Paint That Ugly Brick

3 Materials
3 Hours

I used General Finishes Milk Paint to give my orange brick a new look in the den and neutralize that ugly orange color. This gave me a whole new option for paint color on the walls.

40 year old original orange brick. So hard to match a room for paint. After 4 wall colors failed it was time to change the brick.

The mortar was already a dark grey so I used a milk paint by General Finishes called Seagull Gray. Dabbed each brick with a round brush. Took about 2 hours.

I waited overnight to let it dry and used another color of General Finishes called Driftwood to lightly feather over the brick. This was fast and quick, and you can make it as light or heavy as you prefer. I did light brush strokes and the design in the brick became accented.

From ugly orange brick to rustic gray

Here you can see the finished product. Contractors cannot believe I did this. I have many colors to chose for accent walls but will stay light in the den for lack of bright windows.

The jury is still out as to weather or not to us a high heat paint for the brass fireplace cover or get an updated model. Feel free to comment.

General Finishes QD Water Based Milk Paint, 1 Quart, Drift Wood, Driftwood

General Finishes QSGG Milk Paint, 1 quart, Seagull Gray

Brossum Large 2-in-1 Round Chalk and Wax Brush for Painting Furniture, Handmade with All Natural Bristles with Ergonomic Handle

I went to Sherwin Williams and had them match the Seagull Gray for my walls which were an old brown paneling. This you see here is called Peppercorn and too dark for the room . I will update when I paint the paneled wall and fireplace.

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Frequently asked questions

Have a question about this project?

3 of 5 questions
  • Mona Goldenberg Mona Goldenberg on Jul 14, 2021

    Can you use this paint on outside floor brick

  • Elizabeth Fernandez Elizabeth Fernandez on Jul 15, 2021

    Great job on the brick - it looks like a new install. Ever give a thought to redoing the wood surround and mantel? As I'm sure you know, there are wood stains in so many colors. If you're a wood purist and don't want to touch it, bravo for you and just disregard the suggestion. Enjoy your beautiful work!

  • Soo49938387 Soo49938387 on Jul 24, 2021

    Are you going to remove the very dated fireplace screen?.


Join the conversation

3 of 18 comments
  • Ingrid Ingrid on Jul 15, 2021

    Thank you for letting me know this. I was concerned about brush strokes and if I had to take it outside and spray it. Black high heat is the way to go. Did you use natural bristle or poly brush? 1 coat or 2?

  • Barbara Barbara on Jul 15, 2021

    A white wash, which is a diluted white paint using a rag wiping down the brick and mortar will give you a softened look. I wish I knew how to post a picture. But if you are going for the bold and beautiful than this looks great and even better with a black insert to go with the walls.

    • Ingrid Ingrid on Jul 16, 2021

      I watch all those house flips and get ideas. I saw one where the lady made the house up in Boston "Shabby Chic" by painting the red brick white and then sanding off parts of the paint, looked good.

      I can't use my cell phone to post, I have a regular desktop PC and send the pictures from my cell phone to my email, then download it to post. LOTS of effort. LOL.