Thursday, September 22, 2011

to paint or not to paint?

* paint brick fireplace!

that's on my project to-do list.

it should have been checked off by now so that
it would be ready for use this winter.

it's not.

i'm generally not one to shy away from slapping
paint on anything but for some reason
i feel tentative about painting the brick.
does that mean i shouldn't do it?

after we moved in i immediately painted the shiny brass
fireplace insert black.

that was easy and greatly improved things.
but in the back of my mind i knew i'd eventually paint the brick.

in anticipation of painting it this summer i cleaned her
out really well in the spring and removed the big
honking insert.

this is how it sits now.

when i took the insert out i realized i'd done a rotten
prep job before painting it. note the black rim around the opening.

so, now, i have to paint the brick.

i do like the warmth of brick. i think i'm afraid i'm going to want
it back and this is one paint job you just can't undo.

however, every time i see a painted brick fireplace, like this one from

 i'm ready to pull out my brush!

i also love the brick treatment in this kitchen.

and this whitewash treatment is great.


what to do, what to do?

i'm leaning toward a whitewash so that some of the warmth
of the brick will come through.

any opinions? i'm wide open.



  1. I like the regular brick. But thats me

  2. I like the whitewash or regular brick. The all-white is too sterile looking.

  3. I'm sure if you paint it then it will look fabulous, but I prefer brick. If you whitewash, then I'd recommend doing it *lightly* so that it is easier to be undone, and if you like it, then keep it or do even more... Dori :-]

  4. I love the coziness of natural brick, but the whitewash does, as you said, let some of that warmth of the brick through. I agree with Wendy-the white is too stark. And as you said, you can't undo it without calling in the sandblasting men from the Mojave Desert.

  5. I agree with whitewash lightly so you see the warmth of the brick.

  6. LOVE the whitewash! Still lets the warmth in, but brings a fresh look with it as well. Yep, I would do you do that anyway??

  7. I vote for the whitewash. With your white walls and white mantel, it's nice to have a bit of contrast, which the raw bricks, or the whitewash, will give you.

  8. Im in the same boat as you! I got a massive red brick fireplace and was leaning towards white washing just the upper portion to make the room feel (and hopefully) look bigger. Id love to see which way you go with your fireplace! Good luck!

  9. I think it depends on your decor. A country look might call more for the white wash while a contemporary feel might call more for the white paint or other more dramatic color. In any event, natural stone is a good thing with or without paint.