Updating Rock and Brick Walls in Your Home

Posted: 05/12/2015

So you fell in love with the “bones” of your new-to-you home… not so much the 70s décor. As you renovate your new found treasure, it’s easy enough to replace wood paneling with sheetrock. And, while it’s not easy, scraping a popcorn ceiling is doable.

And you love the full rock wall inside your sunroom. Or the all brick fireplace. Well, “love” is a strong word. Maybe it’s more likely that you love the idea of it, but the deep red color of those bricks certainly dates the room.

There are a few easy fixes here – they might even be easier than you expect – where you can change the appearance of your interior rock and brick surfaces while maintaining their integrity, emphasizing their beauty, and not getting all Italian-villa-exposed-brick-cheesy.

Painting


The obvious answer to changing the appearance of interior stone or brick, shy of doing a complete demo and starting over, is to paint it. But this approach only has appeal with certain décor choices. It’s a very pristine look and works well with a modern design. 

Painting brick is fairly simple and shouldn’t take more than a day if you’re working on an interior space. Keep in mind that, depending on the color you go with, painting stone or brick may require a primer.

Whitewashing


If you’d like to keep the natural integrity of the stone or brick – maintaining a rustic look, but without the stark contrast to the rest of the room – then whitewashing the stone may be a great option. All you need to do is:
  • Take a before picture of the stone or brick
  • Clean the stone with a wet cloth
  • Place a splash guard over the floor b/c there will probably be dripping
  • Water down the paint of choice in a bucket of 1:1 ratio paint and water
  • With a cloth or sponge, soak up some of the water mixture and  ring it out tow where it’s wet but not dripping
  • Rub the watered down paint on the brick surface until covered

Allow each coat to dry and then take another picture. Compare it to your before picture because the changes you see with the naked eye will be subtle, so the pictures will help you to determine if you want to apply another coat or not. Continue to apply coats until you reach your desired muted tone to fit the design of the room.


If you’re unsure how to get the look you desire, or want some other ideas on how to deal with an unsightly stone or brick wall or fireplace, HA Construction is happy to come take a look and help brainstorm with you. Our expertise may come in handy in helping you to think outside the box.