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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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