Posted On November 7th, 2019

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As promised in my last post about our living room redo reveal, a few more details about how we painted the brick and changed out this mantel for those also looking to make the jump.

Below is the after. White as snow brick [Benjamin Moore white dove, same as the wall colour] and a move I am still loving even though it took me years to commit. And let me tell you, that is not something I usually need to say about myself.

I'm more a jump in and fix it later person if that becomes the case.

 

Above was the Before. [cell phone pics so excuse all the glare]

About 6 years or so ago I think it was, I had white washed the brick to lighten the tone. It was a peachy purple tone in the house and the whitewash was my first step. Added some water to the paint, painted it on and used a rag to wipe off the excess as I went. I had already staged the mantel for the after of full on paint. I guess I was a bit excited.

 

 Everyone says they love the in between mess shots, so here's one of them. Computers, mugs, kid toys, my start to styling all while ripping everything apart. Good times, but it has to get worse before it gets better.

You can see just a bit of the original brick colour under the mantel and to the right as there was a speaker sitting there for years.

 

Cleaned off and ready to roll.

How to paint your brick.

A super good vacuum to loosen the debris and a designated paint brush as once you start painting brick you won't want to be using this brush on anything else. I did not water the paint down this time and just literally went brick by brick. This ended up taking 2 coats plus touch ups. Even with the previous whitewashing, the brick just sucked up the paint like a sponge.

 

 Our "mantel" since we moved in here is really just a fancy term for cobbled together plywood with trim on the front. We added a piece of chair rail to the bottom years ago but it has never looked like a real fireplace mantel of any kind. Without getting into a full rip out, I came out with the idea to paint the top of the mantel out in white to match the brick and rip the front of the mantel off and replace it with a heavy piece of wood to give the appearance of a real timber.

 

 We used black limba for the wood and you can see here how it was affixed to the existing frame. We could not for nothing find a piece of any kind of wood longer than 12' so we did end up with a small seam on one side but it is truly hardly noticeable after Trevor got it in place so I am calling it a win. Our mantel finally looks like a real mantel that deserves to go above a fireplace.

 

 

 

So at the end of the day, I am super happy with the project. Painting the brick took forever and way longer than I had anticiapted which is the story of my reno life. Trevor always says I think everything takes 5 minutes when in reality it probably takes a week. Whatever, it always gets done.

 

Have a great day everyone,

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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