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elijah's avatar

Have you ever painted bricks?

Asked by elijah (8647points) February 20th, 2009 from iPhone

I have a brick wall in my LR surrounding my fireplace. I’m painting the room a dark grey and am considering painting the brick wall white, either a thick glossy white or a more distressed look with flat white and some brick showing through. Have any of you done it? Is it a pain to do? Do you regret it? I know that once it’s on I’m stuck with it, short of sandblasting it off.

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19 Answers

elijah's avatar

The brick wall is about 14×9, with a simple “floating” grey stone shelf running the entire length.

gailcalled's avatar

Is the brick wall brick coloured now? I have always thought it a very attractive look. And you are right. Once you spray the bricks, baby, you have a white brick wall forever.

The grey stone shelf sounds very attractive. And you can install hardware into brick for hanging art, quilts, etc, that can be removed easily. Think twice, spray later.

elijah's avatar

@gailcalled it’s just multi colored bricks now. Some reddish, some tan, some darker red/brownish. Just a typical classic brick wall.
I’ve been thinking about it for a year and a half, since moving in. I’m really leaning towards painting it, but people keep telling me not to.

gailcalled's avatar

What about evening out the color….so that they are all reddish colored. I have a brick wall behind my wood-burning stove; the bricks are not uniformly colored but I never thought about the difference until now. I love mine.

elijah's avatar

On a side note, I drove past a house yesterday and in the front window was a giant vase of flowers. I immediately thought “gailcalled!”.
fluther is taking over my life

elijah's avatar

I’m just thinking that a white wall would be a great focal point in a dark grey room, especially with adding white crown moulding and trim.

Dog's avatar

What ever you decide to do- I would seal the brick wall first with a clear sealant so that you could possibly remove the paint in the future if you wished.

blondie411's avatar

I read a bunch of blogs, and this one girl was documenting how she is transforming her fireplace and she was unsure about painting the fireplace. Well she posted pictures of some inspiration. Take a look, her blog name is The Lil Bee and she’s really awesome.

http://www.thelilbee.com/2008/11/lets-build-fire.html

elijah's avatar

@blondie411 thanks for the link, that glossy black is absolutely amazing. Unfortunately I think a whole black wall would be over the top though :-(
I love the painted bricks, every time I see a picture I know I want it. There’s just that slight nagging feeling of what if I don’t like it 3 years from now?

blondie411's avatar

Yeah, these were pictures of fireplaces and you are talking about a wall. I know I have seen on HGTV or TLC (one of those many makeover shows) them painting a brick wall, it was white though I remember. I think if you can to pull as much inspiration as you can from different blogs, flickr, magazines, and it will all come together.

Hold on I think I have another link…

elijah's avatar

Yeah I’ve seen a million pictures, online and in my magazines, and I know I love it. I just wonder if people regret it down the road.
And I  HGTV and TLC. I can watch it all day!

blondie411's avatar

That I don’t know. I say go for it!

augustlan's avatar

I say go for it as well. Either you are an interior brick person, or you are not. As long as you own it, make it your own! It’s not that hard to paint brick, but you will definitely need a brush to get in all the nooks and crannies. If you are painting the bricks around the firebox itself, be sure to use paint specifically designed for high heat situations.

An alternative to painting the brick is covering it with some other facing material, such as beadboard or plywood or something like that. That way you can paint it now, and it can be easily removed at a later date.

gooch's avatar

Easy to do but big regret later

steelmarket's avatar

Just throw up a wood stud wall and gyp board over the brick. Then you can paint, paper, add molding, whatever you want and always take it down later. You can use 2×4s turned sideways so the wall is not very deep. You will only lose 2 inches of depth from your shelf.

elijah's avatar

I want to keep the texture of the wall, so a false front isn’t an option. I think I’ve decided to paint it. I regret not painting it every time I look at it, it just looks so plain and I don’t know, boring. I think I would have bigger regrets if I do nothing. I’m going for it!!

augustlan's avatar

Just FYI… if you really hate it down the road, it can be removed by sandblasting it. Pain in the ass, but do-able!

elijah's avatar

From what I’ve read sandblasting it causes a lot of damage, but there is a product called soy something (I can’t remember exactly) that goes on like a thick paste and slowly eats the paint. You have to do a lot of scrubbing between applications. You can take it off completely or leave some paint for a white washed effect.

augustlan's avatar

You should post before and after pics… I’d love to see them.

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