Thursday, April 19, 2012

living room = done!

Hooray, it's the final post of the living room series... the one I'm most excited about!  As you recall, I made this chevron artwork, refinished the brass fireplace insert, made some paint chip art, some no-sew pillows, and painted and decorated the built-in shelves.  And finally, the biggest, most tedious part that made the biggest difference in the room - painting the brick fireplace!  Now, if you're like my father and you think brick is artwork and should never be painted, I'm sorry.  I just had to brighten up the room and redo the light-sucking, brown and traditional fireplace.  

I wanted to do this before we even moved in, but I knew that once brick was painted, it's never going back to the way it was.  I had to think this over.  About seven months after moving in, I got the itch.  Most Saturdays start out at our house like this: Today show + coffee + couch + Pinterest.  I started looking up "white brick fireplaces" to see how it would look.  I would glance over to Ehren with that "I'm up to something, don't be mad, please continue to love me" face.  He knew something was up.  Our conversation went like this:

Ehren: what?
Jamie: ...nothing...   
Ehren: oh great, what do you want to do now?
Jamie: I want to paint the fireplace.
Ehren: this happens every weekend!  you get an idea in your head and then you have to do it!
Jamie: it's not like we're gonna do it THIS weekend.

...Famous last words.  It was done by the end of the next day.  So let's look at the before, shortly after we moved in:



So brown and so not my vision.  I called Lawrence Decorators to get advice on how to prep and paint the fireplace.  They said to clean it, use masonry sealer, and then paint with whatever paint you want.  Here was what I found online that gave me peace of mind to go ahead with the project.  It's kind of crazy how similar the pictures are to our living room.



I vacuumed and wiped down the fireplace for a cleanish slate.  Has anyone ever told you how hard it is to clean brick?  After it was clean, I started the masonry sealer coat. 


First part of the masonry sealer.

Ehren's doing a great job.. look at that form!
Cozy is once again exhausted from home improvement.
After the masonry sealer and waiting a long four hours, we started painting with the real paint.  We just used the same kind used for woodwork/baseboards but in white.  

Beginning of the real paint.
Since we painted the fireplace white, we had to paint the built-ins from "dove white" to white".  They needed another coat of paint anyway due to scuffs and scratches.


And 14 hours of painting later (with both of us painting), we were done!  Since the masonry sealer provided such a nice surface for the paint, we only had to do one coat of real paint (approximately half of a gallon).  Doesn't it look brighter? 



And here is the accumulation of all the previous posts (taken with our camera instead of my phone)










View from the kitchen.
View from the dining room.



The coffee table is my favorite piece of furniture in our house.  It is a resin cast of railroad ties from the Philippines - has a lot of meaning for us!  Plus it's huge and doesn't show crumbs, water rings from glasses, dust, etc.  


Well, what do you think?  To recap, the living room looked like this:


And now looks like this:


Our living room is finally the "vision" I had when we moved in.  It took about 7 months to complete but it was way worth it.  I was able to plan things out and "get it right" the first time.  My advice is: don't be afraid to paint brick!  Especially if you want to brighten up the room and make it more contemporary. 

Cozy agrees. 



91 comments :

  1. I LOVE LOVE LOVE it! I wasn't sure I'd like the painted brick, but I DO!

    I should look back and see if I could find a "real" before picture!
    Nice work.

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  2. SO SO SO SO SO CUTE!!!!! haven't seen you in forever.... Living room warming party?

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  3. Looks SO awesome Jamie! I LOVE it! I have to say that it was great that you made the painting of the fireplace your "finale", it really brought it all together in the end!

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  4. you guys did an amazing job! I saw this on YHL and I can't believe its the same room! I also love your table -unique, hefty and just plain gorgeous! Just wondering why it hold special meaning to you guys, since I'm Filipino? :-)

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    1. Hey, thanks for commenting! My husband is half Filipino so that's why it was special to us. :)

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  5. Beautiful makeover. Such a dramatic difference. The whole room looks great. Love your cute dog too.

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  6. Question - would it be possible for you to share your paint colors in both the living room and kitchen?

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    1. Yes I would like to know the paint colours as well...just found your blog...very nice - love the transformation!
      Cheryl from Ontario

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    2. No problem!

      Kitchen: Vermont slate blue - Benjamin Moore
      Living room walls: Annonymous - Behr
      Built-ins: Trout grey - Benjamin Moore

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  7. Just popped over from Young House Love! Your living room looks fantastic!! And you're from Lawrence? Even better! Thanks for repping Kansas so awesomely!

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    1. Yes, I'm from Lawrence - born and raised :) Are you from Larryville, too?

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    2. Nope, but my husband and I are currently living in McPherson--we try to make it up to Lawrence every month or so to stay with some friends who live over near Haskell College... we LOVE Lawrence! :)

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  8. Your living room looks great! Love it! do you have a tutorial on how to make the cool chevron art?

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    1. Found it! I will have to try it :)

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  9. It looks great! how long have you been updating your house? I will be doing some updates soon!

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    1. Thank you! We moved into our house July 2, 2011. The list of updates is unending!

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  10. What a fabulous transformation!! Saw you over at YHL.

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  11. I just saw you at YHL too. Fabulous!! Questions: 1) What paint finish did you use - satin? semi-gloss? flat? It's kind of hard to tell. 2) What did you do to the grout spaces? It sort of looks grayish but maybe that's the shadow from the light.

    We've been in this house 30 years and I'd love to paint our brick but we're chicken, big-time! Our trim is Dove White so we'd go with that instead of white.

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    1. Thank you! I used a flat finish. And the entire fireplace is white, didn't do anything to the grout spaces. All of the trim in our house is Dove White but I'm going to gradually change it all to white. Thanks for looking at my blog.

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  12. Just came over from Young House Love! I love the living room! Do you know the name of the paint color in the living room? I went through some back posts and didn't see it. Sorry, if I missed it. Great job!

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    1. Thank you! The living room is "annonymous" from Behr at Home Depot. I think it's the perfect medium grey - doesn't look blue or brown no matter what the light source is!

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  13. Jumped over from yhl. Love how it turned out! I took the plunge and painted my fireplace last year and its the best makeover in the house. Totally brightened the whole living area! Definitely worth the effort.

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  14. Popping over from YHL. We have a very similiar looking room, with high ceilings, dark wood beams, brown leather sofas and red brick fireplace, with a built-in (us - on one side). I think we even once had the same ceiling fan. I have been debating about whether to paint the fireplace, but now seeing yours I think I am in! It looks great!

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    1. Do it! Makes everything so much brighter!

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  15. Love it! Saw you on YHL - Yay! I really like how you didn't put your tv above the fireplace :) Great makeover!

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  16. I came over from Young House Love as well. The room looks fantastic, and your GSP is adorable! Love the ikat print chair in the corner and the chevron art.

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  17. I love it! Came from YHL. Very cute!

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  18. just found you via YHL and i love the trasformation!

    i am also obsessed with your coffee table, as is pretty much everyone else visiting your site i'm sure!

    xo julesinflats.com

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  19. Another visitor from YHL. Such a lovely room. I have a space with an extremely tall wall about the fireplace and might be copying your yellow chev art!

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  20. Also over from YHL! Where, oh where did you get the coffee table?

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  21. LOVE IT!!! I ESPECIALLY LOVE "I'm up to something, don't be mad, please continue to love me" face. I read it out loud to my husband and he was very relieved to know he's not alone in that sense. I make that face at him EVERY WEEKEND. :)
    XOXO
    Katie

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    1. Totally. It's never good when the first thing I do Saturday morning is get on YHL or Pinterest. Always makes for trouble. :)

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  22. LOVE the make over! This is exactly how I want our living room to look!

    Where did you get the gorgeous grey ikat chair in the corner? I love it!

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  23. I love your space! I was wondering where you got your tv/media stand? It's awesome.

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    1. I bought it online and now I can't find it anymore. I think the company was Southern Enterprises but they don't have it on their website anymore.

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  24. I can't believe it! Our dog's name is cozy too! I NEVER would have thought there would be another dog by that name :) My husband and I were trying to come up with names in the car and we passed a bilboard that said "Cozy exit ahead" for a hotel. And we thought it fit! Looks like cozy's make great dogs haha
    And I love the transformation by the way!

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    1. That is hilarious! It's such a fitting name. And, yes, Cozys make the best dogs :)

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  25. I love your makeover! The room is gorgeous. The colors are perfect and everything looks so warm and inviting :)

    MyersMaison.blogspot.com

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  26. Your living room transformation is beautiful! I can't wait to get my hands on our grey brick fireplace!

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  27. Beautiful!
    Where did yo get the chair in the corner? or is it something you re-covered? I'd love to know the name of that fabric!!!!

    GREAT JOB!

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    Replies
    1. I got it from Target not too long ago. I bet you could find it online!

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  28. Gorgeous guys! I love the painted brick!

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  29. Lovely transformation1 saw you over on YHL and came right on over. Our living rooms are literally clones of each other, right down to the ceiling fan. Except we have stone instead of brick. Would love to know where you got the TV stand and the metallic silver vase on the mantel. Thanks!!

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  30. Hello! Congrats on being featured on Young House Love! A friend of mine saw your blog post and instantly recognized my living room that you used as inspiration, but it didn't look like you linked the credit back to me. I'd appreciate you either linking up to my blog or taking the picture of my living room off your website. Everyone appreciates a little bit of love and traffic from fellow bloggers! Sorry I had to leave a comment, I couldn't figure out how to email you. Thanks and great job on your beautiful living room!! Here's the link to my blog post in case you need it: http://www.homemadeginger.com/2011/02/just-can-of-white-paint.html

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    1. I am so sorry about that! I thought the pictures linked back to the pin I found on pinterest, but I was wrong! I already fixed it. Sorry, again :)

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  31. Found you via YHL....WOW, your room looks amazing!! That coffee table is so cool! I took a can of the black high heat paint and a brush to my brass fireplace insert one day while the hubby was at work and he didn't even notice for several days (even though I had said I wanted to do it sometime). He was hesitant because it was a really nice insert. I didn't even prime mine and it still looks great and it's been years.

    Keep up the great work. I look forward to checking out more of your projects.

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  32. Wow - I also came over from YHL. I love your update! I have brick, too, but the room is so small that I think I will keep the brick the way it is. I would love to try painting it one day in the future. We just got our house 2 months ago. So, yeah, like you said, the list is never ending. We have lots of things to do and paint. So, congrats on completing your living room!

    ashley (therealvalley.blogspot.com)

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  33. I found you via YHL too. I think your updates is GORGEOUS! I have a fireplace that is a reddish brown color and I would love love LOVE to paint it. Thanks for sharing your project and giving me some inspiration to get going on mine! Again, beautiful update!

    ~Pearl at flippin-fetch.blogspot.com

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  34. Congrats on the YHL feature! I love your living room and completely support your brick painting! :) We painted our fireplace and spray painted the brass insert. It was an instant transformation!

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  35. Saw this on Young House Love, this redo is BEAUTIFUL! I love EVERYTHING about the room. I can't wait to check out the rest of your blog!

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  36. Also over here from YHL, such a great transformation! I'm thinking all you need now is a really large scale (possibly round) wow light fixture!

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    1. I would love to do that! However, I love having a ceiling fan.. especially as hot as this Kansas summer has been. We will be updating the ceiling fan as soon as I can convince Ehren that it's a priority :)

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  37. LOVE, LOVE, LOVE your coffee table!!!

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  38. Looks great! And I was so excited that your inspiration photos were from Megan's living room makeover on her blog, HomeMadeGinger!

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  39. Looks awesome. You guys did a great job on that fireplace. And that coffee table is to die for!!! Found you at YHL - now your newest follower!!!


    JL

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  40. Just curious ... where did you find the rug in the room? I am LOVING the transformation! The dark mantel on the white brick ... SUCK a pop of color!

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    1. I got it from www.rugsusa.com and it was 60% off at the time. Here's the link!

      http://www.rugsusa.com/rugsusa/rugs/rugs-usa-modern-trelllis/light-blue/200HJHK03A-P.html

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  41. Found your blog through YHL. I Love the coffee table - its so unique! Your new living room looks great! I'm sure your enjoying it! :-)

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  42. Popping over from YHL. Love your coffee table. Was that a DIO too? What sort of legs are under it?

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    1. I wish I could have DIY'd that but it's from Z Gallerie. It's a resin cast of railroad ties - probably not something I could undertake!

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  43. Where oh where did you pick up your coffee table?? I'm in love with it! My family is from Tarlac province of the PI and we go back regularly. Many thanks!

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    1. Wow! That's so awesome. My mother in law is from Naga City. I went there for the first time 2 years ago and I looked very out of place (pale, blonde, tall). I got a lot of stares :)

      The coffee table is from Z Gallerie... they also have coordinating end tables and dining room table.

      http://www.zgallerie.com/p-10418-timber-coffee-table.aspx

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    2. Thank you!! I took my husband there for the first time a few years back and everyone kept staring at him too...I understand completely.

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  44. Came over from YHL to say great job!

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  45. Hi Jamie, I just arrived from YHL. Great job on the family room makeover. I got very excited when I realized that your new house is the same layout as my new house, also purchased this past spring (2012). We are still recovering from some of the new home expenses, but I'm eager to finish some of the rooms. I'll be watching you for inspiration!

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    1. I think this is a very popular 1970s floor plan.. there are a bunch in our neighborhood. There are so many new expenses when you first buy a home (which explains why it took 7 months to finish the living room). But the way I think of it is, if you get it done fast and all at once, then you'll have nothing else to do and won't have anything else to fix up. Good luck and be patient!

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  46. This look AWESOME! I love your art and the choice of colors. Very fun :D We are doing a full home remodel! Check out our progress @ my blog. Would love to have some feedback once we start going with the interior process. PS- Found you from YoungHouseLove... how exciting!

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  47. What is the white paint you used for the brick? Color name and brand? Thanks!

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    1. Here's the link to the kind of paint we used. We just used "white".

      http://www.benjaminmoore.com/en-us/for-your-home/paint-products/waterborne-satin-impervo-paint?lang=en_US&role=H#advs=0&tab=2

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  48. How did you refinish the fireplace doors?

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    1. You can see how I did it on this post...

      http://feldmeyers.blogspot.com/2012/03/living-room-transformation-part-ii.html

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  49. Love it. Stopping by via YHL, but loving your art (my last name is the letter F, too), your dog (we just got a GSP puppy last weekend) and your recent home purchase (we just closed July 31).

    I am a new follower :)

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    1. GSPs are the best dogs! What'd you name yours? And thanks for following :)

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  50. I have two GSPs - and they both love to lay with their head under the couch... just like Cozy! How funny are they?!

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    1. That's hilarious. I think they are all the same. There are a lot of GSPs in our neighborhood and they all have the same mannerisms.

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  51. Where did you find your kitchen counter stool? How do you like them?

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  52. Lovely makeover. We are in the market for leather sofa and I like the sofas you have got. Where did you get yours and how do you like it?

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  53. Found you on pinterest...I'm contemplating doing this brick paining and i have the similar built-ins around mine...any regrets 1 year later? I'd love to know and if/when I post about it I'll get an inspiration reference!
    -katie@mydiyhabits

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  54. Absolutely no regrets! I have said many times "painting the fireplace was the best thing we've done to this house". My sister just bought a house with a similar fireplace and it was painted white within days of moving in. Dooooo it!

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  55. You've convinced me to paint our fireplace. Yours looks great! And I love the grey wall color you chose. I'm curious...where is your kitchen rug from? I love the color and it looks high quality!

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    1. Awesome! I bet it looks great! I got the kitchen rug at World Market on clearance. I love it because it's greys instead of browns. I've never seen one like it so I had to have it. Hopefully they still make them!

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  56. thanks for beautiful post, its contemporary and cozy too, you described the whole scenario in a great way. loved it!

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  59. Love the Timber coffee table from Z Gallerie! Where did you find the end tables??

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