A fireplace is typically towards the top of the wishlist for pretty much every homebuyer. Not only an architectural focal point, it literally warms up a room. The trick is to look beyond what the real estate gods have given you and see its potential instead. When Kristen of @homewithharper, and her husband bought their new house they were thrilled to have a fireplace, but weren’t loving its deep brick red color. A painted brick fireplace was an easy solution.
“When we moved into our new home our fireplace was a really standard style red brick that we knew we wanted to paint. I’m not typically indecisive, so it was easy for us to narrow down colors. We initially thought about white, but all of our walls were white so we wanted to shake it up and do something different,” says Kristen. “My husband was the one who thought of painting it black, once we found Blackish we had to do it!”
After the paint job, the black brick fireplace created a bold statement in the living room, helping to play up other accents of black throughout. So instead of blending into their already white walls, the modern shape of the fireplace gets celebrated.
“Since the fireplace is the first thing you see when you open the front door, we always knew we wanted it to stand out and it definitely does that now! The black fireplace and the white walls create such a beautiful contrast when you walk in,” says Kristen. “It has quickly become my favorite room in the house. It feels very mature and modern, but cozy at the same time.”
Tips for Painting a Brick Fireplace
If you’re looking to repaint your own brick or stone fireplace, here are some of Kristen’s best DIY tips:
Clean and prep your surface
Give yourself plenty of time to thoroughly prep the fireplace, making sure it’s cleaned inside and out. Then give it a good scrub with a wire brush and a mixture of water, white vinegar, and a little dish soap. Let it dry thoroughly, it might take a day or two because brick is incredibly porous. Gather your supplies and tape around the fireplace to prevent any excess paint from getting onto your walls.
Don't underestimate black
When you’re choosing a color, pick something that can grow with you. “We have a pretty modern aesthetic and so black worked really well. When we primed the fireplace, it gave us an idea of what it would look like if we had gone with white paint,” says Kristen. “We realized then that white would have been boring and it would have taken a great architectural detail and made it blend into the rest of the room.” A darker color also covers any divets and imperfections, so keep that in mind depending on the condition of the brick or stone in your fireplace. Don’t be afraid to go bold with a black painted fireplace.
Prime then paint
Primer will help your paint adhere better to the stone. Remember brick is really porous, so primer will ensure that you need less coats of paint in order to get the color you want. Another fun paint tip, use a mini roller to apply the paint, it’s way faster and helps minimize the appearance of brush strokes. For this project, Kristen consulted with our paint and color experts at Clare to make sure she was getting the right formula.
Don't be scared of wet paint
No matter how careful you are, you might get a little bit of paint on the walls so it’s important to be prepared. Kristen kept a baby wipe handy and was able to easily wash any accidents off the wall before they became a problem.
Related: If you love this fireplace makeover, you might also like 8 DIY Projects You Can Tackle in a Weekend — Just Add Paint!