Wednesday, January 16, 2013

on the verge of change: a white painted fireplace


Well, here it is. Already the middle of January in a Brand New Year.

How’s it going so far?

I find myself checking the date a lot and making a special effort to observe things. I’ll actually stop myself in the middle of some random moment and take a mental snapshot of what I’m doing. Who’s around? What feelings do I notice?

That’s because I have a surreal Alice-in-Wonderland experience of January.

I think of January as my poor-Cinderella-step-child-month. It’s so easy to overlook... at least for me. It’s a month that’s usually filled with stretches of long, winter days that seem dutiful and busy. But unexciting. Days where nothing much is happening and yet, each year when I blink, it’s over.

And I’m left standing in the grocery line telling the cashier, “I can’t believe it’s already February!”


But I’m tired of missing January. I’m trying to slow down and savor the small things and I was recently inspired HERE.

So I’ve decided to make a few changes in my surroundings and make this month more memorable.

What kinds of changes are you focused on?

Because we can shine a light on different areas of our life at once. We can make a few tweaks here and there and it all adds up in the end. Tiny, positive changes that can make us feel wonderfully empowered and grateful

if we do it one day at a time.

At least that’s how I do it. With baby steps.


In my last post I shared a few of my smaller painting projects that were easy to do. And today I’ll show you the BIG change that’s on my mind right now. Only I admit it, I’m a bit nervous.

Because I’ve decided to paint my tall fireplace wall…a creamy white.


What do you think?









Let me remind you.

This is a photo I took a few minutes ago of my family room with all the brick.


This is what my bricks look like right now.


photo: commonground

And this is the photo that makes me feel brave.

Do you all know Debra over at Common Ground? She’s got an amazing home. It’s warm and beautiful and has lots of creamy white everywhere, which I love. And this is what her own painted brick fireplace looks like. You can go HERE to see more of this room. And you  really should too, not just to see her lovely decorating style, but to meet someone with a kind heart.

In the meantime, I’ll keep you posted on my progress. I need to wash the bricks and do a bit more research on the paint.

And I’d love to know what you think….



I’m linking up here:


photos: BHG, designsponge, apartmenttherapy, remodalista, countryliving, alantishome,



Unknown said...

I absolutely love the white bricks, they look wonderful.

You are just fabulous at making over part of your home....I love how you just do it!!

I think it can be easy to wish January away....I suddenly realised that yesterday we were half way through the month, time to think about where the time is actually going.

Have a great week :)

PS Love all the fireplaces you have featured.

Unknown said...

That is exactly how i feel. I can't believe how fast time is going but so slow at the same time. I hate when I fell like the month is gone and I've done nothing! I think the white brick would be really pretty :)

Cathi said...

January is kind of a hermit like month for me, where I am quiet and stay cuddled up in my home - but I also appreciate the down time too! This weekend however, I had my bathroom painted and had little bits of things here and there fixed, so it was a productive weekend. I love the white bricks and think your fireplace will look fabulous - you should definitely go for it! In my old house we painted the bricks white and it gives it such a fresh feel! Wishing you a peaceful week to savor! ( Zen Habits is one of my fave blogs!). xxoo

Phyllis @Around the House said...

love the painted fireplaces, so much to look at so much to your blog...I am a new follower of yours and I must go back and see more...come on over for a visit...

Phyllis @Around the House said...

I forgot I loved the resolution thing, I will have to make a note of that...

Number Fifty-Three said...

Can't wait to see your finished brick! My fireplace was a hideous looking brick and I painted it (along w/ the wood paneling above and the mantel all bright white and I love it!


Gypsy Heart said...

Oh, I think the brick will be beautiful painted! Your home is so beautiful already ~ this will be just another perfect touch.

I dislike seeing days pass so fast! Seems one month just begins and we're starting over in another.


Anonymous said...

I think the brown brick fireplace you have now is nice, but if you paint it creamy white it will be BEAUTIFUL! I just painted all the robin's egg blue walls in my house white. We have an open floor plan, so once I started painting I couldn't really stop until most of the house was painted! Thank heavens it's done! I'm loving all the white though. Everything looks clean. It's so calm and soothing. Good luck with the fireplace. Can't wait to see how it turns out.

Pam Kessler said...

Wow. You are very brave! There's something very permanent about painting brick that would freak me out. But, since it's not my brick I have to say that I love Debra's fireplace. I think you'll be happy you painted them (after you get the first few bricks painted). It will give your room a whole new look.

ℳartina @ Northern Nesting said...

Oh Leslie I think it's going to look fabulous!! Can't wait to see what you decide!

Sew a Fine Seam said...

Yes Yes Yes!! Paint that stuff white! Did you see the brick makeover I did for my Mom with white chalk paint? We wanted a look not quite covered - like Jaime did over at Crafty Scrappy Happy. I thinned the paint and it only took one quart. You could do the same thing but not thin it as much if you want it completely covered! IF you diddn't see my Mom's email me and I'll send you a link. It was super easy. I shopped for paint and went and painted it all in one day.

Tina´s PicStory said...

what a cozy place :)

Anonymous said...

Oh, I love the idea and pictures of the brick fireplace painted white. So pretty! Just found your blog... so glad I did. melinda

AntiqueChase said...

go for it!!

Nellie's Cozy Place said...

When I saw your fireplace with that
gorgeous white mantle, I thought,
oh yea.........that is gonna be
pretty. I am wanting to paint mine
white as well, but I have a dark mantle and dark slotted pine on each I know exactly how you feel, cause once it is done there is not turning back, but everytime
I see a white brick fireplace it makes my heart sing, and I just remembered about the white brick wall we had in our first house over 32 years ago that had a bookcase in
it and I painted the bookcase white, it was like an oak color I think, and it looked so much better white, and the brick actually had
something in it that gave the brick a lil bit of a glittery look, but very glamorous look!

Anyway, hope to see the results if you do it.........
Blessings, Nellie

Jamie-So Much Better With Age said...

I love those pics. And your fireplace will love AMAZING painted all white. I love your blog. I'm a new follower ;)

Vanessa said...

Hi, Lesile

I love this idea and can't wait to see the finish product. Have a great week.



Sandi~A Cottage Muse said...

I say do it!
I painted mine and love it!

Di@Cottage-Wishes said...

I have brick too and can't wait to see what you do. Di

Ladies Holiday said...

It is a new year- do it! I think it'll look great (and doing your research first almost ensures that!)

Great C.S Lewis quote too.


Magali@TheLittleWhiteHouse said...

It would look lovely in white!

Lori said...

Love the look of the white but painting them scares the crap out of me! You have an entire wall ~ lots of brick so I know it will be fabulous when it is finished.

I have a love/hate relationship with January. Although it is the brand new chapter in the new year I usually wish it away ~ more so because of the cold as Jan = windchills here in eastern Canada!

Debra@CommonGround said...

Hey Leslie, I'm just now getting here after being MIA all week. Your fireplace wall will be amazing!!! and will totally change the look and feel of your room. I DO have to admit I'm glad that I wasn't the one to have to do the painting, though!! Can't wait to see it finished. Please just don't freak out half way through. that's something that I would do...

Art and Sand said...

Our fireplace was white when we moved into our house and I loved it. I didn't love the wall to wall berber carpet, including the bathroom. Our house was a weekend beach house for the previous owners (we've been told it was actually his "love shack" and he brought a different woman every weekend, but never his wife) and they rarely lit fires in the fireplace. We found that with our constant use in the winter, the white got too dirty and chipped. Although I love the look of white, I don't think we can go back to it.

Pamela said...

Leslie go for it!! It will look fab!

Unknown said...

yes to the white bricks!!! its gonna look amazing in that space.

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