~Whitewash your Brick Fireplace ~

I am a Pinterest Junkie. I openly admit it. No shame.
Late one winter evening while lounging in front of the red brick fireplace, I had an epiphany!  
Ok, so it's not THAT bad, but so ready for a change!
While at one time I loved my brick fireplace, I was coming to the realization that I no longer loved it. I actually didn't really like it that much any more.
It was that moment that I searched "White Wash Brick". 
OMG!!!
Pin. Pin. Pin. Pin. Pin.

{before} Red brick detail
 I was unstoppable.  I am also very impatient and really love immediate results.  
I wanted to begin right then and there; without delay. 
 I had realized that I had everything I needed to make this happen....NOW!!
   Ummmm, really Dawn? Give your head a shake; it's midnight!! Wait 'till tomorrow.
And so I did.

Just GOING FOR IT!!!  ( Hah haa! See how impatient I am? No drop cloths, only a couple of plastic garbage bags!)          P.S. I highly recommend drop cloths or other protection of surrounding surfaces to save from scrubbing walls, floors...etc.
 While I am no interior design expert or professional painter, I do have a lot of personal experience. And I'm not afraid to jump in and try new things.  
Be Brave!

List of materials needed:
  • White paint (I used left over White ceiling paint)
  • Water
  • Bucket
  • Brushes (I used 2" ones from the Dollar Store for this)
  • Rags for cleaning any sploshes and splashes
  • Drop Cloths (also available at the Dollar Store) 
  • Time (yes, despite being impatient....this will take time!!)
First coat!
 Instructions:
  • Clear area of your "stuff", remove any items from the mantle and surrounding area to give yourself plenty of work room.
  • Cover any furnishings/carpeting that cannot be moved out of the area & tape off any walls/floors that will need protection.
  • ShopVac or use regular vacuum with brush wand attachment to get any gritty bits off of the existing brick.
  • Once you are all ready to go, mix white paint with water. The Ratio of Water to Paint will depend on how transparent you want the end result. For this project the Ratio was approx          2 parts water: 1 part paint.  Adjust according to your desired outcome (more water for transparent results, more paint for more opaque results). You will need quite a bit of this glorious white milky liquid to complete the project so remember the ratio you use originally to remain consistent if you need to mix any additional paint!  I also highly recommend painting a few inconspicuous bricks to do a test run!
  • Starting at the top and working your way down, begin to brush liquid onto the bricks, working it into the crevices and grout in between.  You'll probably find your "rhythm" after a few rows and get into your painting GROOVE and find the brush strokes that work for your brick!!      My project took two coats to achieve a slightly more opaque color that I was after.  Since the bricks were red, the white wash did make it seem slightly pink in spots, I simply went over the really pink parts with extra paint. Blend, blend. blend!!!  It's honestly pretty hard to mess it up.
    All done!! Feels like a completely new room!
  • Be extra vigilant of mopping up any paint splatters and use those rags to get them up before the paint dries. 
  • Congrats! Your bravery has paid off! Grab a glass of wine (or a rum and coke, if you're like me!) and bask in the glory of your new fireplace!
I now have a beautiful huge fern inside the fireplace, SO bright and lovely!

While this project can seem daunting, it's actually a lot of fun!  It was so worth it.  Our living room seems so much bigger and the fireplace is more of an accent now instead of an eye sore!

Can't wait to replace the "builders concrete" mantel with a lovely wooden one!  
That will be another blog post!!




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