Amazingly Easy Instant Gratification Project!

Yesterday I was going to work on more stuff like you read about in yesterday’s post.  Crafty, productive, finishing projects I’ve already started kind of a day.  However, my mom and I were chatting on the phone that morning.  She was telling me how her fireplace door has a broken panel of glass that she needs to replace it, but she also needs to finish cleaning out the fireplace.  That got me to looking at my filthy fireplace.  It’s really quite Spring-like outside now and we won’t be having another fire this year.  I already had candles in the fireplace, but I hadn’t properly cleaned out the soot and ashes from the winter.  After I got off the phone, I ended up unscrewing the log holder from the back so I would be able to clean better and leave it out for easier candle arranging.

Then I decided I really just needed to stain my silly, dated, shabby chic-ish white painted “used” bricks. (You can buy “used” bricks at hardware stores with the bits of white paint on them.  “Used” bricks cost more.)

Yeah, I’m not sure how exactly I made that drastic leap either, but I did.  I’d even recently on a sleepless night created a new Pin Board with tile ideas for my fireplace.  However, tiles cost money that I don’t have in the budget right now.  Recently, I’d seen this article from “Ask Anna Moseley” through Pinterest on staining bricks to update their look.   Brilliant!  Then I don’t have to worry about tiling over paint (vs. stain) when I do get money for it.  Go to her article if you want a How To.  It’s already so well written I don’t need to re-write it.

I will show you pictures, though!

I used wood stain, minwax “red mahogany” because I already had it.  It took about 5 oz for the whole thing.  Only one coat was needed.  My house was smelly,  but I opened windows and used lavender spray.  So worth it.

I also arranged a cute new display on the mantle for spring with my Grandma Fran’s yellow glassware and yellow food coloring enhanced water for my yellow flowers.

It seemed a bit weird to ignore all the other things I had planned on doing, but this was so gratifying!  I am pleased on so many levels.  The bricks fit together in a geometric way that wasn’t noticeable before because it was all sort of white washed blah.  I put the new display on top and a nice bright white candle arrangement inside with cheap metal trays under and behind it for cleanliness and light.  Even the brass on the doors looks amazing to me right now (unless brass is fantastic Moroccan, I’m not usually interested AT ALL).

What’s rocking your world right now?  Do you have any all-consuming projects you fall in to and get absorbed by?


9 thoughts on “Amazingly Easy Instant Gratification Project!

  1. Marty

    Great job on the bricks, Andrea – but I need to know about that painting!! Did you post something that I missed? And the bottles look wonderful with it.

    I think I also missed your rap talents. Loved it. Thanks!!

    1. madamesaslow Post author

      I’ve never posted about that painting above the mantle. It’s one of my favorites of my own work. I started that as a junior in the college dorms. It hung in my bathroom (my dorms were fancy/expensive and I had my own bathroom). It was the only place I had space for it AND I could work on it there, as opposed to the wall over the bed. I’d add some more paint to it every time I was feeling inspired. Years later and it’s finished (for now).
      I have SO MANY bottles and jars. I kind of hoard them. But at least I use them all the time.
      Rap talents? She’s a brick house?

  2. Kathryn Stovall Dennis

    LOVE how the fireplace looks! It had absolutely no POP before and didn’t fit in with the rest of your color saturated home. Good cheap quick change. And, nothing that can’t be undone/redone/covered over later. You are amazing. KSD


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