August 29, 2010

A Living Room Facelift

Did any of you notice something different when you looked at the pictures in this post?

If you say the fireplace, you’re right!

Two weeks ago, we decided to move forward with our idea of painting our brick fireplace. The fireplace is HUGE… is takes up almost one entire wall in our not-so-big living room. The brick was a mix of red, orange, tan, and black. NOT attractive. It sucked the life out of the room. It also made the room feel smaller than it already is.

I know some people are not a fan of painting brick. I get that. You can’t go back once you paint it. And some brick looks great au naturel. But this brick was NOT cute and something needed to be done. So, fans of painted brick, read on…  and those who have a panic attack thinking about it, maybe you should skip this post.

Here is what the fireplace has looked like ever since we bought our house over a year ago:



See? Ugly, retro brick. Not to mention we tried everything we could to remove the soot stains in front of the fireplace with no luck. Mission: Beautify Retro Brick Fireplace was on.

After taping off all the edges, I used a roller to roll on white primer.


Then I used a paint brush to paint the grout – a task that just about killed the nerves in my hand.

IMG_9935 Here is what it looked like after I got it completely painted white: (with exception to the bottom edge, which I left for Joe to do because I couldn’t move my hand any more)IMG_9983 When we had started the process, we planned on painting it white. I had seen white fireplaces before and thought they looked really modern and classy.

After seeing it white, we changed our minds. It needed color.

I took a can of paint that we had planned on using for our hall bath. It was a bit dark so I mixed in some white. I rolled it on, and it resulted in this:IMG_0008 We decided not to paint the grout the same color. We love the effect of having the grout white and the bricks tan.IMG_0010Once we were satisfied with the color of the fireplace, we had a few more things to do. The first thing was to re-paint the inside of the fireplace. It looked as though the paint had been there for years, and was stained with rust and soot. It made our freshly-painted fireplace look unfinished.

Joe picked up some flat black spray paint from Meijer, made specifically for fireplaces that can withstand high heat. It took a few coats and now it looks as good as new!

The second thing we needed to do to make our fireplace makeover look complete was to add some color to the living room. Having tan walls and a tan fireplace, along with brown leather furniture, things were seeming a little bland. I picked up some blue curtains from Big Lots and throw pillows and candles from Target. They did the trick!


Here is a before and after picture:

IMG_9926  IMG_0261

So, what do you think?


Amanda said...

Love it!! I think you need to come paint mine lol I don't have black in my bricks but the other colors.. yep thats mine :/

-stephanie- said...

I love before and after pictures. I think you did a fabulous job and everything looks fresh. Love it!

maren said...

Looks fabulous!!!! Really brightens up the room. You've got to love it!

Susie said...

Love the new look. Makes the room bigger looking and brighter.

Kelsey Kim said...

Looks so nice! I like that you didn't keep them white, but painted them the tan and kept the grout white.

Stephanie said...

I think it looks AWESOME!!!! Love what you decided with the fireplace!

Lindsay said...

It looks great!! I love the accent colors you added in too!

Brandi said...

I think it looks GREAT!!!! Good job :)

Colleen: said...

It looks fabulous and if I may say so, SO much better!!!:) What a creative solution!

Krystal said...

Looks way better!

I'm following from Meet me on Mondays

Christine said...

It looks very updated and crisp. It looked like it took a lot of work-nice job.

I found you on the Monday blog hop and I am following you now.

OutnumberedMama said...

It looks incredible! Really brightened up the room - great work!
I found you on Mom Blog Monday Blog Hop and I am now following you. Hope you can visit me too!
and Busy Moms Who Love to Read

Jocelyn said...

Wow! That is amazing what a fresh coat of paint will do. Your room looks so the before and after shots. I am your newest follower:-)

Marissa said...

Wow, VERY cool makeover! Love it and such patience painting the grout so perfectly :) I'm impressed!! LOVE those accent pillows for the couch too!!

Marissa said...

newest follower from meet me monday :)

Terry said...

Great Job. It looks so much fresher.

Following you from Monday Morning Follow. Would appreciate it if you could stop over and follow me back.

One of my followers will win a Halloween Apron 10/5

Nickie said...

Nice makeover! I love painted brick myself... gives it new life!

I'm a new follower from Meet Me Monday!!!

Visit me at Southern Expressions

Karen said...

It looks really good!! Good gob!

Tiffany Lockette said...

Looks great Steph!Makes the brick look more updated.

Tiffany said...

I think it looks awesome! So glad y'all didn't stick with the plain white paint, it was too bright. The more toned down look, looks so much better! :) And the color of your curtains is great!

Bernadette said...

i love it!
...i have those same blue curtains :)

Unknown said...

LOVE IT! Thank you...we're thinking of buying a house with a brick fireplace very similar to yours but were unsure what we could do to it to make it look better! Now we might actually go through with buying the house!

Emily Ekegren said...

LOVE LOVE LOVE IT! We are looking at houses and I see so much ugly outdated brick. Thanks for making it look easy!

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