Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Again With Family Room Brick

A while back, I asked for feedback concerning the idea of painting our family room brick white. I think I want to do it - I've almost decided for sure. The paneling all around the rest of the room is going to be white, though, and the upper portion of those walls will be the same shade of white. I had also sort of had it in my head that the sofa would be white (although, that's not set in stone). So, my only concern about painting the brick white, is that then we'll wind up with too much white in that room. But, as much as I try to get around it, the brick isn't a very attractive color. Hmmm. What to do?

Back in December, we decided we really needed to get some more seating down in the family room. When friends and family came over, we were all crowding into the living room. IKEA's "Tullsta" chairs are super cheap, and we figured getting them in white might give us a good visual for white with the brick while giving guests more room at the same time.

The brick is still too orange, but the contrast of the darker brick and the white chair is nice.

So, I'm wondering, what about painting the brick like a medium gray tone? Darker and grayer than the greige carpet, but light enough that I can leave the mantel wood alone and still have it looking right. Remember that we plan to spray paint that brassy fireplace screen/grill black with high-heat spray paint, too. Whatcha think?

With other projects lined up ahead of this one, we're talking September at the earliest for painting the brick, but it never hurts to think things through. Several readers (including my mom - Hi, Mom!) recommended painting the paneling and walls first and then deciding on the brick. I think that sounds very smart and we'll likely follow that plan. Still, I'm trying to picture gray brick in my mind's eye.



Courtney said...

Painting the fire place will make the room fell bigger because warm colors come out at you while cool colors recede .I like the gray idea! It will create a focal point and give the room an anchor with all the white you will have. Maybe if you took the color of the carpet and went a little darker. Spray painting the brass part of the fire place darker will really add dimension and varying shades. Also what ever color you paint the fire place you could find similar fabric (in solid or print) to make throw pillows with to put around the room to tie in that new shade into all the white!

Erin said...
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Erin said...

What about leaving the brick alone...Paint the walls/paneling and the mantel white? You could also replace your fireplace cover. We spray painted ours a brushed nickle and it turned out fabulous. Super easy cheap quick fix. We were about to buy a new one when we figured we'd give it a try! I can't wait to see your room complete:)

Vintage Simple said...

I still like the idea of white best - you could always add pops of color with pillows, curtains, an area rug... But gray could look nice, too.

At any rate - anything but the brick. Just my humble opinion. I'm sure whatever you end up deciding will be the right choice for you guys!


Katie Jo Jo said...

Hi! I just ran across your lovely blog today and I think it's just great!

I would definitely wait to paint the bricks. Personally, I love bricks just the way they and I kinda think that whenever you change the brassy thing in the middle, you might like the bricks more.

I'm excited to see what you decide!

Jacci said...

You know, I just had the thought that the PRIMER will be white. Once I get the walls done - if we then decide to paint the brick (99.9% sure we will) - I'll get a preview of white on it when we prime it. So, we can prime the brick, check it out, think it over while the white primer is on, and go from there.

I really want to do this YESTERDAY, but there a half dozen other things I want done just as soon ;) Patience.


Ginger@cottageonrosewood said...

I saw a post on Young House Love (sorry can't remember which one) about liming brick? It turned out gorgeous. It was much lighter, more muted, but subtle and it was almost white, but more of the brick showed through. Oh, I can't explain it but if you google it, you'll see what I mean. Just a thought.

Chelsea said...

Tough decision! I grapple with that decision every now and again, too, with our stone fireplace. I saw a photo once of someone who painted their stone fireplace white, and it looked superb! But at the same time, I kinda like how it looks now, ya know? Anyways, I agree with you and your Mom to paint the rest of the room and then decide. :)

Jacci said...

Ginger, I **love** the look of limed brick, but I know it rubs away fairly easily. That's the charm of it, I know - and I'd love our bricks peeking through the lime, but I wondered about it with children in the house. Maybe something I should google (?). Anyone know about safety concerns?



Britten said...

As someone who has removed paint from brick fireplaces I beg you to make painting the brick a last resort. Classic red brick is timeless.
I was thinking about getting those same chairs from Ikea. How do you like them? Are they holding up well?

Anonymous said...

I think painting everything else (walls/paneling) first is the best idea. I also like Erin's idea of getting rid of the gold. You'd be surprised how big of a difference that will make! I love the idea of gray too! Good Luck!!

AshleyandJoshua said...

I love the gray idea!! I think they gray with the white will be *so* beautiful!

Grace said...

I think you have a very wise mother and you should listen to her. I would definitely paint the walls and brassy bit first (I just used a paint brush on mine and it looks great - then you can do it while it is in place. The brush strokes don't show because it is oil based paint).

I would also put more on the mantel before deciding so that more of the brick is covered - things like a large mirror and possibly a row of white jugs. My gut feeling is that the gray will look fantastic, but you might need to change the wood mantel to black or bleached wood (not sure though).

Have you seen Meg Crossley's basement in Canadian House and Home magazine. The only picture I could find on-line was the front cover shot for the magazine (http://www.houseandhome.com/magazine/2009/makeovers). If you are interested I could take photos from the magazine itself and email them to you. Her room looks like what you are aiming for.

Jacci said...

I really appreciate you guys weighing in. Good thing we have some time to decide. I came across two great photos tonight that I'll share later this week :)

Britten - the Tullsta chairs are actually really comfy. They don't seem like they will be at first - a little stiff, small. But my pregnant 5'11" sis was even comfy in them, so that has to count for something :)

As for holding up, we've only had them for 3 and 1/2 months, so not sure I can speak to that. I haven't had to wash the slips, yet, though - so that's a bonus!

Thanks again, guys. Oh, and yes, we're painting the brassy thing. If you read in the post, I mention that it will be black :)


Jacci said...

Oh, and I meant to say before that the mantel arrangement is definitely not going to stay the same. That's all just random stuff filling up some of the space until we do more in here :)

Renae said...

Guess what? If you paint it gray and don't like it, you can always paint it white! I'm still on the "paint it" bandwagon...i'm so excited to see what you choose to do!

Beautiful Handmade said...

I'm definitely thinking something in the sand/beige/grey color would be perfect - it would lighten things up but still provide enough contrast to be interesting.Yes, yes paint it!

Renae said...

Hey, I know this post is months old but did I ever send you this link:
flythroughourwindow(dot)com? She has gorgeous painted brick in her house. Just thought i'd send this if I hadn't already. :)

Jacci said...

Oh, yes, Renae. I'm an established stalker of both Darby and Erika's ;) Thanks for thinking of me!!!