Sunday, March 25, 2012

Fireplace Makeover on a Dime

Oh, I have so wanted to improve our fireplace for so long!  While I do not mind some aspects of our circa 1970s "chic" home (such as our vaulted ceilings, unique windows, and asymmetry here and there...), the fireplace has really felt like an eyesore.  The fireplace sported floor to ceiling red-orange brick that just did not flow with the rest of our furnishings....

Several years ago I did have the mantle built up by a talented carpenter and stained a pretty brown; however, the "lovely" brick still remained.  Here is a before shot:

As well as here (it does not look too bad with fall decor even though the remainder of the furniture is primarily black and white:

I posted a while back about improving the fireplace (here, if interested), found some beautiful inspiration, and got to work attempting to draw out how I would love for it to look:


Then, because I work full time and lack a carpenter for a husband as well as those nifty saws, tile cutters and other assorted tools I would need to actually perform this job as a DIY type of thing, I went ahead and got two bids to actually transform my fireplace.

But the bids were farrrrrr more than I wanted to spend at this point.

So as a compromise, we painted it.  Yep, leftover primer and a quart of Behr Premium for $13.

I know some people really think it is awful to paint natural brick (my husband being one of those!). But after living with it for over 15 years, something had to give for me!

No, it is still not my dream fireplace.  However, it is less of a focal point now which helps tremendously.  Blending into the walls with a neutral color allows me to decorate it for any season more easily.  And the beautiful brown mantle now stands out more.  Here are some shots below as I attempted to add a few touches of spring:

I really do not like perfectly symmetrical mantle arrangements (with the same object replicated on either side of a mirror, flatscreen or piece of art), but I do like balance.  So I shopped the house for some objects that would supply balance as well as supply a hint of spring.  Could have done a better job now that I look at these photos, but here she is for now anyway.  Just keeping it real.  :)

Spring flowers....

Not bad for 13 bucks!

This link is a wonderful resource for painting fireplaces:

PS!  (below) I added this sweet little painting that I found today at a thrift shop for $2.99!!!  It's now happy at home on the spring mantle and love it.  :)

Thanks for visiting!




  1. Love your touches of spring on the mantle. I also like the brick painted the lighter color. It looks fantastic.

  2. I like the painted brick. We painted ours white about a year after we moved in (13 years ago) and I still like it better than the natural brick. Robyn

  3. i think it looks great! a definite upgrade.

  4. Oh my, take a bow!

    You've put a "spring" in my step with your creative loveliness.

    Have a blessed day!

  5. I hope you will share this starting tonight at The CSI Project, The challenge is Spring Vignettes and Decor. That includes Easter. It will be a great party!!! Lots of inspiration.

    Dee, the CSI Girl

  6. Love the color. Curious is it a grey/white. It looks like concrete. If you could share the color that would be great.


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