When mixing materials with your resin that have nooks and crannies, such a gold leaf, mix your resin and hardener first. Once the resin is thoroughly mixed then add your leaf. Materials like gold leaf that can fold and make little pockets of unmixed resin will ruin your blank.
When making ribbons with Alumilite use a glass plate or sheet of HDPE that will fit in your pressure pot. The trapped bubbles in these thin pours will expand as the resin warms up while curing, leaving you with a pitted surface.