House For Six

Flooring and Painted Fireplaces

Deme Crinion2 Comments
I was so hoping to have a "look at our new floors!" post for you this week.....but no.  I don't even have progress to show you.  We're still here with a giant concrete hole, cardboard taped down over the edges and somehow don't even really notice it anymore.  It's funny how quickly you get used to things.

Anyhow, we were supposed to hear back from the company within a few days and it's now been two weeks.  We finally called them and supposedly the flooring request was approved and ordered early this week. But as I said...big hole still here.

In the meantime, I took to painting.  All the walls are going white or super light in an effort to "uncave" the room, but first, the fireplace!
I have wanted to paint this bad boy since the day we moved in.  The brick isn't horrible but it's quite orange and quite massive.  I love the chunky, rustic mantle though and wanted to preserve some of the variation/texture in the brick.  So, a white wash technique seemed the perfect solution.

It's super easy and if you have extra white paint on hand like we did, it's totally free!  After giving the brick a good wipe down, I started with a 50/50 mixture of paint and water.  I mixed it in that tub on the mantle and it was way more than I needed.  Forgive the slew of iphone pics to follow...
I used a paintbrush to apply the paint working my way down and over a couple rows at a time.  It can be really drippy, so I tried to get very little paint on my brush and kept a rag handy to blot any drips.  The brick is very porous.  At first it appears you've painted on straight white paint (and you sort of freak out) but after a few minutes it sucks that paint right up.

If you want to go super light, then I recommend applying a very light coat, dabbing the brick with the cloth as you go.  If you know you want more opaque coverage, you could even skip the water mix and do a layer of straight paint.  Just remember, you can always make it more white but not exactly go backwards.  As I learned the hard way...

I did my first light coat, stepped back to admire my work and completely hated it.  It was giving off a really peach vibe...almost fleshy. #gag   But that's what happens when you layer white over orange, right?  So I knew that a second coat was in my future, to which added just a bit of grey paint in the mixture.

In this pic below I'm halfway through the second coat (top half) and you can see the peachy first coat below it.  See how the chair blends into the brick with no contrast?  Not what I was going for. 
At this point, with the top half done, full panic set in.  I still hated it.  So, I put down the paintbrush and walked away from it for a day.  I looked back at some of my inspiration pics and realized what was bugging me:  the grout lines.  All the pics I loved had white grout lines and various degrees of white washed brick.  I had the opposite happening. Oy. 

Since I couldn't go back and make the bricks lighter, I decided to push forward with the rest of the second coat but focused on purposely getting in those grout lines (I was really lazy about it when I started the second coat).  You can see here that the second coat is complete but the grout lines below the mantle are painted and those ones above the mantle are not.  It's all personal preference but I liked the white grout much better.
And this is how she's sitting today.  I'm going to go back and fill in the grout lines above the mantle and then wait on the new flooring and wall paint to do anything else.  I think I'll be happy to end it here but the yellow flooring and blue walls are totally throwing me.  It feels like we're really close but not quite right.  Hopefully the floors and wall color are the missing piece; otherwise I'll be painting this baby solid white.


Thanks so much for reading! We would love to hang out!
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