Tutorial: Painting a Brick Fireplace

9:27 AM


We have this extra large brick fireplace in our living room which I love. I just hated that oak mantle and 1978 brick. This project has been on my list for months. I spent a lot of time researching the perfect paint to use. My biggest concern was safety, because we use the fireplace a lot and I was afraid that the heat would chip the paint and the idea of burning paint chips just scared me. So after I found a paint that would be safe around the heat, it took me another month to decide on the colors. So finally, over Christmas break Drew and I worked together for a few days to paint the whole living room. 

If you need instructions on painting your mantle, check out Jessica's tutorial.


1. Clean the brick.
I started by sweeping off dust, grit, and cob webs. Then I scrubbed everything with hot soapy water. Let it dry, then I swept again. Then I used Vinegar and a coarse scrub brush on the sooty area just in front of the fire box. Then I gave it one last sweeping until I couldn't gather anymore crumbs. This is the most time consuming part but a well prepared surface will just hold up much better.
2. Prime the brick.
I used a special primer called Zinsser Smart Prime. It's a water based product that contains similar resins used in oil based products, so it has a longer drying time allowing full penetration of the brick. I applied the primer with a brush, because I wanted the mortar left the original color.
3. Paint base coat color.
I used acrylic paint by Bejamin Moore. The color is Stormy Monday in a matte finish. I applied the base color with a brush.
4. Create faux brick finish.
Use a sea sponge for this step. Get the sponge wet and squeeze out all the water so it's soft. Start with a color 1-2 shades darker than your base coat and just start slapping it on. If you're not totally confident, start on the side or a less noticeable spot until you get used to it. Let the first texture coat dry then add another shade slightly darker.

I used Bejamin Moore colors Stone and Iron Mountain. For the third and fourth sponged layers I mixed all my grey colors to create as many shades as possible for a more natural look. 

Here is our finished fireplace! My husband was impressed that the brick still looks like brick and I totally love it. I'm working on the rest of the living room projects like a vertical garden, hand-built book cases, curtains, and paintings. It should be finished pretty soon and I'm so excited.

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Tomorrow is Jessica's live webinar through burdastyle if you are interested in learning about altering a suit!

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3 comments

  1. I am amazed how natural your brick looks. Did you have to put a clear coat over the matte paint?
    Looks so good with the painted mantel.

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    Replies
    1. I didn't put on any clear coating, I just left the matte paint plain because I didn't want the finish to be glossy at all.

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