Old jewellery can be spruced up and given a new lease on life with a little effort. Whether it is old costume jewellery that has become discoloured or a cheap piece that needs to be improved, it can be coloured to improve it. There are a few different ways to colour jewellery gold and the method depends on what effect you are trying to achieve. Paint can help create an eye-catching piece or replicate a piece's original state.
Clean the piece of jewellery to get rid of any dirt that will affect the finish. Wash in warm soap and water and dry thoroughly before beginning. If painting plastic jewellery, wipe down with paint thinner after washing.
Invest in a quality paint if you wish to achieve a quality finish. Krylon's Premium Metallic 18 kt. Gold Plate is a quality paint and gives an even finish. Patch test a bit of the jewellery that won't be visible before beginning to paint.
Lay down a few sheets of newspaper before you begin to work and put on the plastic gloves to prevent your surfaces and hands from getting covered in paint. Hold the spray can a few inches from the piece of jewellery and spray evenly. Do not attempt to build up the colour in one go--coat the piece as many times as necessary to achieve the colour you desire. Leave the piece to dry for two hours after painting. Do not be tempted to paint it again before then if you are recoating. Pieces may be feel dry to the touch after about 20 minutes but will not be completely dry for two hours.
Use gold nail polish if you only wish to add slight touches of gold colouring to the piece. Choose a good quality nail polish to avoid chipping. When you are finished coating the piece of jewellery in either the gold paint or the nail polish, varnish it protect it. For a greater shine, put an extra coating on. Do not overdo the varnish--too many coats will be prone to chipping.
Do not attempt to paint real gold jewellery or expensive pieces. As with any craft projects, mistakes can happen. Use only pieces that are not valuable and that can be easily replaced.