It didn’t take me long to get the bug. You know the one. You start a project which leads directly into another project and into another. Before you know it you are knee deep in projects and you can’t see your kitchen table or counter.
After creating my accent wall I decided to dive right into whitewashing the fireplace in the living room.
I recently got rid of an oversized sectional and while waiting for new furniture to be delivered I figured I would take advantage of the now open space.
I finished painting the trim, painted another accent wall, and finally decided to take a leap of faith and cover the fireplace.
A year or so ago I covered the walls on either side of the fireplace with a bluish beachy themed wall paper and the red/orange brick just clashed.
I turned to the most reliable DIY source I know for some research. Youtube. After watching many videos and reading other blogs I mustered up the courage to dig out the can of white paint I already owned a bucket and some rags.
There is nothing more satisfying with a home improvement project than not having to spend an arm and a leg accomplishing it. I just happened to have a half gallon of white paint on hand, as well as a sample container of a grey paint.
I have to admit the sample containers from the paint department at Lowes are a great tool and extremely inexpensive if you don’t need much paint.
You will need:
1 bucket to mix the paint and water
Equal parts paint and water – I used 1 part paint to 1 part water
gloves are recommended
Here’s how I did it:
After cleaning the bricks and trim of any dust and cobwebs I applied painters tape around the actual fireplace unit to protect it from any spillage or splashing.
I did not remove the mantel since I intended on painting it afterwards anyway. If you are not painting/staining the mantel piece itself, I recommend removing it or covering it for protection as well.
In my 3 gallon bucket, I mixed 1 part water to 1 part white paint and stirred until well mixed. It should have a very thin consistency (hence the recommendation for gloves).
I covered the bricks on the floor and the surrounding floor with a drop cloth. I did not want the floor bricks to end up too heavily coated while I covered the rest of the fireplace.
I started at the top and started with a clean rag that I had saturated in my white-washing mixture. This was extremely messy and not recommended. Although it is not the process I used, I feel like a very large sponge would have been the best applicator of choice.
Anyway, I decided while splattering diluted paint everywhere that I would try the brush instead. This was a more even and purposeful application as the paint ran down and soaked into the bricks and I could even it out with the rag by dabbing over top of it.
Continue the process until you are satisfied with the coverage of the bricks. Depending on how light or dark you are wanting the bricks. I suggest stepping back periodically to evaluate the piece as a whole.
Once I was satisfied with the majority of the fireplace I began working on the floor bricks that I had covered originally.
Once those were covered I dumped out the extra water from my bucket so I just had paint left. I mixed the white paint with the grey sample I had left over to make a light grey color for the mantel and trim.
With a little elbow grease and patience, you can make a quick change to your fireplace bricks and freshen up the room.