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Sunday, October 20, 2013

Painted Brick Fireplace

Today's post is a classic example of a DIY gone wrong, that actually ended up even better than anticipated. When we moved into our home a few weeks ago, I knew that I wanted to paint the fireplace. Some people love old brick, but it just wasn't working for me, and it made the room in the basement look a lot darker.

Plus, there was a section of mismatched brick and ugly mortar in the middle of the wall, where a hole was clearly patched.

I was at first inspired by this gorgeous painted fireplace, so I started by following those instructions. The two paint colors that I chose were "Creamy White" by Behr Ultra, and Behr "Blanket Brown", both satin enamel. I used a roller to paint the brick with the white shade, and a paint brush to paint between the bricks and completely cover the mortar. I used roughly two coats, to completely cover the brick.

Now, the blogger at the previous link stated that her brick had a rough texture, and was uneven, which helped to get the almost spattered look of the painted fireplace. Because my brick was mostly smooth, I used a pair of scissors to give the roller some texture for the top coat.

Then, I rolled it in the brown paint, and lightly painted over a section of the wall.

I don't have a photo of that part, but maybe it was the color, maybe it was the texture of the brick, but whatever it was, it was unfortunately not the effect that I wanted. 

We mixed some white paint with the brown to lighten it up a bit, and tried again. Still something was off.
"I kind of like the white better," my husband said. So we decided to try and wipe off some of the brown paint, wait for it to dry, and then repaint that section white. As I grabbed a paper towel and smeared off some of the paint (which actually just smoothed it out), my husband stopped and said, "actually, I kind of like how that looks."

A new plan was born.

We painted the walls, still using the textured roller and a light hand, and coating the wall and fireplace in sections. It's important to roll vertically instead of horizontally, or the paint will cover the mortar. Then using a dry paper towel, smudge the paint horizontally along each brick. This part of the process is really quick, and the goal isn't to make it look completely perfect. 

Here is the finished product (excuse the table full of supplies)!

Close up:

Painted brick fireplace.
All in all, I think it turned out really well for a a DIY accident, and it really makes the room look much brighter and put together!

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Thursday, October 10, 2013

Recycled Chairs: Wooden Chairs Turned Teal & Chevron

We've recently moved into a new home, and after ripping out some hideous wallpaper (post to follow), and painting our bedroom our beautiful shade of teal, I had some paint left over. In a rush to get some seating ready for our housewarming party, I used it to transform some old dining chairs into cute, comfy seating.

Using some upholstery tacks, grey and white chevron printed fabric, and leftover paint (and some primer!), I was able to turn these chairs (which I got for free from a friend) into something eye catching and new.

To prime them, I used Kilz Original primer, and painted one coat (kind of haphazardly) over all four chairs. I wasn't really worried about getting paint on the seats, since I planned to cover them anyway. After letting the primer dry, I painted each one with a coat of teal paint. The paint brush definitely leaves some lines in the paint, but that was the look that I was going for. If you want a smooth finish, you might want to try a roller.

To cover the seats, I simply cut enough printed fabric to stretch over the top of the seat, and stretch around the edges. I placed of bit of polyester batting between the fabric and the top of the seat cushion. It doesn't add ton of cushion, but it fluffs up the seat a little bit to make it look newer, and less worn in.

I used some upholstery tacks to attach the edges of the fabric underneath the seat cushions, and reattached them to the frame of the chair, and there you go! Brand new chairs from an old dining set that was destined for the dumpster.