Update Brick Fireplace With Chalk Paint

3 Materials
3 Hours

When we moved into our cute little Texas farmhouse 4 years ago, the main living room was dark. Dark paneling on the walls, a wall of dark bookcases, and a dark brick fireplace. You can click here to see how we updated the paneling and bookcases. That fireplace was still driving me crazy. I wanted to paint it, but the family said no. So one day I set out to just CLEAN it...and that is how I ended up with a chalk painted fireplace! icon

It was such an easy project. I didn't whitewash it because I was afraid it would look pink. I didn't German Schmear it. I simply painted it. I left plenty of the original brick showing through, and guess what? My family loves it! It was one of the easiest and BEST decisions I made to add a lighter feel to our farmhouse living room!

Fireplace Before

Once the paneled walls were painted, the fireplace stood out like a sore thumb! It didn't matter how I decorated it, it never looked good. It looked dingy and outdated (sorry brick lovers!)

Dirty Fireplace

Years of use had left dark smoke stains on the brick. I tried cleaning it but nothing helped. The grout looked even worse.

What's a girl to do?

I decided to just try painting a small section of the hearth to see if I liked it.

Clean fireplace and test paint

You want to start with a clean fireplace. I vacuumed and use a spray on cleaner to clean it as best as I could.

Then I poured a little of this white chalk paint into a plastic cup and experimented on one side of the hearth.

I realized immediately that this was going to be the perfect solution to our dark and dingy fireplace, and kept going.

Paint grout lines first

I used a small brush to paint the grout lines first and then brushed over the bricks with a regular paintbrush, being careful not to completely cover the brick with the paint.

Keep on painting!

I painted a section and then stepped back to get a full view. Any bricks that needed a little more paint got it, especially the ones directly above the open box where the smoke stains had accumulated.

You can see that I also painted my shiny oak mantel at the same time!

Let dry

You can see that our fireplace is huge! It took me about 3 hours to paint it. Letting it dry and having to be patient before I styled it was the hardest thing to do!

The painted fireplace looks amazing and has lightened the feel of the space tremendously! Best decision ever!

You can visit by blog at diybeautify.com to see how I style my fireplace for all the seasons...it looks fantastic! I also have hundreds more DIYs and home decor tips like this one! I'd be honored to have you stop by icon

Read this guide for more tips and tricks on how to paint a brick fireplace!

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Frequently asked questions
Have a question about this project?
3 of 9 questions
  • Marilou Simon Marilou Simon on Sep 19, 2021

    Will you be burning fires in your fireplace. Are you worried about soot?

  • Karrie Karrie on Sep 20, 2021

    What are your thoughts for a grey brick fireplace. I love this whitewash look but the bricks are that drab stone grey color?

  • Jack Mcclellan Jack Mcclellan on Oct 14, 2021

    Did you use a white white paint? I was thinking of using an off white so it wouldn’t standout quite as much

Join the conversation
3 of 44 comments
  • Ella Ella on Sep 19, 2022

    It sure turned out to be a show stopper, enjoy !

  • Bry Bry on Sep 19, 2022

    I love what you did to your brick fireplace. Years ago in a previous home, our dark brick fireplace did nothing for our dimly lit family room. I painted the entire thing a soft white color. It looked great. Can't help but wonder what it would've looked like with your technique. If I every have another home with a fireplace that needs a little something, I will keep your project in mind. Thanks for sharing with us.