DIY Limewash Smear Fireplace

2 Materials
4 Hours

Hello friends! As you may or may not know, I've been working on fixing up our basement. I've already painted the concrete floor for a quick fix and now I'm tackling the fireplace!

We are blessed to have two fireplaces in our home, which I love! I actually don't mind this red brick at all, but it's on the whole exterior of our home as well, so I felt like mixing it up in this space.

The product I used to do my limewash smear is this Classico Limewash in the color Avorio White by Romabio. They have many different colors to choose from. I purchased it at Home Depot and was able to do my large fireplace with one quart! I also purchased a cheap plastic putty knife set to apply the limewash. Once this product is applied, you have five days to make adjustments or wash it off before it's fully cured.

To get started, I just scrubbed the dark areas with some warm soapy water and a scrub brush.

The limewash is thick like a putty. I didn't dilute it like it says you can, because I didn't want the mess of painting it on and then scrubbing it off to get the distressing. I just wanted to smear it on and be done and it really was that easy!

I found dipping my finger in the limewash and going over all the grout lines was the easiest way to get a cohesive look.

Then I used my smallest putty knife to scoop a little limewash on to my medium sized putty knife and scraped it right on the brick.

So easy, right!? You really cannot mess this up! My only tip is to not start in the same spot or the same direction on each row of bricks. I mixed it up with each row to make sure they all looked random.

To see more of this process, visit my story highlights on my Instagram!

I wanted more brick peeking through in some areas over the next few days, so I just scrubbed those areas with a warm wet rag. It was super easy to make adjustments!

For the hearth, I followed the directions on the can and diluted the limewash with water in a foam cup (1:1 ratio). I wet down the concrete, then just painted the limewash on.

This is with one coat on the hearth. I had to do three coats to get full coverage, as pictured below. It dried super fast (like 20 minutes), so I was able to get it finished pretty quickly. It's not chalky either - just a matte finish like the original concrete!

I also decided to paint the wood wall my fav white (Sherwin Williams Alabaster) to brighten up the dark basement! Click here to see the rest of our home.

What a difference! I still have a ton of work to do down here, but am super pleased with the cozy vibe so far! 🥰

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3 of 7 questions
  • Vivian mimms Vivian mimms on Oct 20, 2019

    OK, now I have to know where the plug is?

  • Veronica Veronica on Oct 21, 2019

    Is the log insert removable so the fireplace is still usable? I’ve always wondered about that. And I love what you did! Such an inviting space now.

  • Marina Camper Marina Camper on Oct 21, 2019

    i love how your project turned out. I wanna try it. Just curious if you just wanna do the grout lines to just brighten them up . Would you say it’d be doable to just wipe off the excess off the bricks? Mine is different brick colors and I don’t wanna cover up their different color brick beauty. I wanna paint the walls white as well.

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3 of 27 comments
  • Jacx Jacx on Oct 21, 2020

    Had to go back and look to see why you left that section unpainted. It's to hang your mantel on for support. Either that or for a t.v.

    Really nice job. I detest that red brick color! I adore used brick and you made it look like that. Very pretty. Like the idea of a removable panel. Most fireplaces are garbage anyway. They suck heat out unless an insert is used. Every dumb house in cali has a stupid fireplace, like it ever got that cold! I boarded mine up and built a book case on each side. You'd think I'd hung a dead dog on the wall! Waste of much needed wall space.

    In Iowa we often have Aga stoves that actually heat a room! It gets cold here!

  • Cindi Hughes Cindi Hughes on Oct 21, 2020

    I love this! How do I see your post about painting the concrete floor? I'm about to do that.