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Monday, March 22, 2010

Painted brick houses

I have written another painted brick post with 15 real life examples of painted brick houses and the colors used on the trim and paint, please see link at the bottom of this post.


For many years, I dreamed about building a brick Georgian house. In fact, this is the picture of the ‘dream house’ that I posted in January of 2008:

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I love the symmetry and order of a classic Georgian house. This house still speaks to me…the windows, chimneys, palladian windows – all elements that I find to be quite beautiful. Architecture by Harrison Design Associates.

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Working on a home from scratch, somehow I knew that I wanted to go more French in style. Perhaps more accurately, a home that combines some aspects of the Georgian that I love, but which is inspired by French architecture but does not slavishly emulate it. In some ways, what I like seems to combine aspects of both French design with perhaps a little English influence.

When I saw this magnificent DC house on the blog of Architect Design (above), I was immediately struck by its beauty. However, what struck me even more was Stefan’s description: the house (designed by Paul Cret, a French architect), was built between a Louis XV house and a Georgian style house. The house in this picture was meant to compliment the French house on one side, but make an easy transition to the Georgian house on the other side. It is stucco, which is very commonly found on French style houses in Europe (and America). I seriously considered using using real stucco on the exterior of my new house. There are countless spectacular examples of masonry stucco houses in Atlanta that are extraordinarily beautiful. (Photo credit: Architect Design)

However, I keep coming back to brick. It is my favorite material for the exterior of a house, and it is definitely a favorite in Atlanta. Red brick does not seem to go well together with a French style house, so I researched painted brick. I love this picture from Apartment Therapy DC – although the picture splices together two different houses, it shows the transformative effect of paint on a Federal or Georgian style house. (Photo credit: Apartment Therapy)

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In Atlanta, it is very common to see what was formerly a red brick house updated to make it look more European. Case in point: this house in Atlanta started its life as a 1930s Federal style house, but in recent years it was totally renovated (taken down to the studs) and transformed into a Neoclassical masterpiece. Architectural design by William T. Baker, landscape architecture Alec Michaelides of LandPlus. (Photo credit: Things That Inspire)

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Another home whose architectural appearance and color palette has immense appeal to me is the personal home of designer (and attorney) Ty Larkins, whose home appeared in the December issue of House Beautiful. Although I marveled at the interiors of this home, what really stood out to me was the exterior, as this is on my mind these days. I contacted Mr. Larkins to ask about the exterior of his home, which looks like it is an older house even though it is newly built (a ‘new old house). (Photo credit: http://www.tylarkins.com/)

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Mr. Larkins told me that he used old brick on the exterior of his new house, then had it painted with latex paint (not too flat, not too glossy). I think the result is beautiful! Painting brick is a great way to get the monolithic appearance of stucco, or achieve a certain uniform look as an alternative to stucco. (Photo credit: http://www.tylarkins.com/)

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The painted brick look is clearly one that has great appeal to me. Last spring, I had the pleasure of touring the home of designer Lori Tippins. I recently emailed Lori, and asked about the exterior of her home. Lori told me that many people think that her home is old even though it is newly built – and she partially attributes that to the fact that she used hand made bricks in the construction of her home (as opposed to machine made). They are not old, but they have interesting shape and character. I love the texture that they give to the exterior of Lori’s home. (Photo credit: Things That Inspire)

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This beautiful new house in the Brookhaven area of Atlanta was designed by architect Rodolfo Castro, who worked for Summerour Architects before establishing his own firm Castro Design Studio (website, and Facebook page). I often walk my dog in this area, and was shocked one day to see what had been a red brick house was suddenly painted white (Benjamin Moore Ballet White –OC 9; the shutters are Benjamin Moore 977 Brandon beige – the colors were selected by Rodolfo and interior designer Jessica Bradley).

 According to Rodolfo, the owners loved the durability of brick, but wanted a more delicate look, and from the first day of design knew that they wanted painted brick. I think the result is spectacular, and the slate roof is the perfect touch for this timeless house. I had the privilege of a private tour of this house by Rodolfo himself (at the tail end of construction), and it is as beautiful on the inside as it is on the outside. (Photo Credit: Rodolfo Castro)

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I love this new home in Charlotte, designed by Pursley Architecture. When this house was designed, the goal was to make it look like an old house – like it had always been there, and had a story to it. Although the article in Beautiful Homes magazine does not note why the owners or the architect chose painted brick, I think it is beautiful and charming and does lend a sense of age to the home. Image via Beautiful Homes, photography by Michael Partenio.

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Architect Stan Dixon’s award winning renovation of a 50s ranch home is painted brick.

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So is this charming new house, also designed by Stan Dixon. I love this house; I drive on this street at least once a week just to see it. The house is so beautifully designed and grounded to its environment, people often comment that it looks like it has been there for decades. The lovely landscape architecture certainly contributes to this effect - landscape architect was Alec Michaelides from LandPlus.

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This beautiful new Georgian home in the Brookhaven area of Atlanta, also designed by Stan Dixon, is painted brick. This is very common in Atlanta homes, old or new – Atlanta seems to like its painted brick homes!

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This beautiful home, designed by Louisiana architect A. Hays Town (1903-2005), was one of the first house that I saved into my architecture inspiration files. I included the house on my post on green doors, and was delighted when an architect who had apprenticed to Mr. Town emailed me and said that he had worked on this home. He said that the house has a brick exterior, and had a ‘mortar wash’ technique in which the bricks are loosely set, then the mortar is rubbed into the exterior creating a unique and beautiful layer. The reader also noted that his clients will often purchase old brick to attain a certain look in a new house.

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When looking into the mortarwash technique a bit further, I came across a product made by Boral Brick called ‘Pastelcote’. This home, in a lovely enclave in the heart of Buckhead, was the Southern Accents Showhouse in the early 2000s, and was designed by Greg Palmer of Harrison Design Associates (website, Facebook page). I spoke with Greg about the house, which he describes as Normandy inspired. Boral Pastelcote was used on the exterior – the house is bricked with Boral bricks, and Pastelcote is a special finish applied to the exterior to give it texture and and solid color. Greg told me that Pastelcote was inspired by a brick treatment in Australia that is very similar to mortarwash. He also noted that he has used it on homes where the clients want the monolithic look and appearance of stucco, but prefer to use brick.


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The Glen Parsonage, designed by Philip Trammel Shutze, has an interesting finish on the brick (here is a link to a larger view). You can see the forms of the bricks quite clearly, but there seems to be something smooth over the bricks. I am not sure if this is a result of years of painting, or whether it is a special treatment – perhaps the mortar was spread over the surface of the bricks to give a smooth appearance. Any Shutze experts out there who could answer this for us? Photo credit: Architecture Tourist.

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Another type of brick treatment that I see in Atlanta is a whitewash or limewash treatment; it is achieved by using a thinner, more translucent mixture that allows the natural color of the brick to show through. Whitewashing brick is lower maintenance, as it is supposed to age with exposure to the elements, achieving a certain patina that is beautiful and elegant.

This magnificent house was selected by Atlanta Homes & Lifestyles as one of the most beautiful examples of classic architecture in Atlanta. When it was renovated several years ago, the architecture firm Spitzmiller and Norris did a masterful job both inside and out in making this extraordinary house even more special. I spoke with Rick Spitzmiller about his work on the house, in particular on the front exterior of the home. Rick said that the beautiful whitewashed brick makes this grand home much more approachable and less imposing despite its elegant facade and grand face to the street. The result is a house that is truly grounded to its beautiful environment, and very welcoming. I thought this was a fascinating observation.

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A close up of the front door of the home. I had the pleasure of seeing this house on a tour of historic homes, and it was by far my favorite home on the tour. The house sits on almost 5 acres, and the grounds are simply magnificent. The landscape design is by Graham Pittman.

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Here is another house in Atlanta that was recently renovated by architect Stan Dixon. This house was designed by James Means (1904-1979), an architect whose work is much loved in Atlanta. Means trained under the great Neel Reid, and his houses are known for their beautiful scale and proportion. This house was originally constructed in 1970, in a Virginia Tidewater style. However, the brick used on the house lacked the character typical of Means houses, so the original brick was limewashed to soften the appearance of the brick while still maintaining the character of the original house. Landscape design by Howard Design Studio. (Photo credit: Things That Inspire)

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Here is a close up of the limewashed brick. Architect Stan Dixon had the limewash applied to reflect natural weather patterns – so, for example, in the area where the rain would pound down on a surface, the limewash is lighter. This gives the limewash a patina right away.

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Another treasured painted brick house in the Druid Hills area of Atlanta was designed by Neel Reid (1885-1926)– discovered through the Architecture Tourist.

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Finally, a picture I saw on a post this weekend from the wonderful new Atlanta blog, Whitehaven. The author went on a tour of homes by Neel Reid, and took a picture of this charming house. The brick intrigued me. Is it painted – or is the color integrated? Helen, one of the authors of Whitehaven, said that the tour guide identified the brick as ‘buff colored brick’ that has never been painted. Given that the house was designed in 1909-1910, I found this to be fascinating. Painted or not, it shows that this look has been a distinct style in Atlanta for at least a century! (Photo credit: Whitehaven)

I could literally include at least 50 more pictures in this post, as a painted brick house can be found on virtually every street in Buckhead, but I think I can rest my case. Painted brick seems to be a classic choice for Atlanta houses, and unless something radically changes, it is more than likely what I will have on my new house. Readers, I am curious; do you see painted brick much in your neck of the woods?

I have written a new blog post on painted brick houses, please visit to see 15 more examples of actual painted brick houses and the colors that the architects, designers, and homeowners selected for the brick and trim.  http://www.thingsthatinspire.net/2014/03/painted-brick-houses-what-color-to.html

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99 comments:

  1. I love the look of painted brick. My favorite though is stone. Living in the NE we do not see very many brick houses and very few painted brick houses. I enjoyed looking at all the pictures - very pretty.

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  2. This is a beautiful blog. In my mind, partly because I love the look of brick and partly because I like having things remain authentic, painting brick is almost like painting a good piece of wood furniture. It also adds to future maintenance costs. Rather than building the house with red brick, you might want to go with a low-key yellow look. There are many fine examples in Toronto.

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  3. Painted brick is very common in Charlotte, and brick houses too. I love all the houses you featured, so pretty!

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  4. I just moved to western New York and haven't seen any painted brick (yet), but when I lived in the south, it was everywhere! I remember lots of painted brick when I would visit Memphis and Nashville as a child, because my Dad thought it was crazy to paint over brick. I like it though. I love your blog and look forward to your new house pictures!

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  5. I adore the A Hays Town Home The exterior is exquisite. In Kansas City we have it all in the Historic District. I love stone, brick, painted when not stark, especially love the look of sandblasted brick.

    Karena
    Art by Karena

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  6. I live in a painted brick house. As far as maintenance is concerned, the older and more beat up it gets the better it looks. Originally it was unpainted, ordinary and matched nearly every other house on the street.

    I remember the very first visits by our designer friend Gordon and Bill Harrison. Their separate visits were a year apart and they'd never met. Before they got to the front door both said, "Paint the Brick."

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  7. I had a feeling this might be a 'Southern' or regional thing. When I visit California, I barely see any brick houses at all (I go to Orange County mostly). In Connecticut, where I grew up, there were definitely brick houses. In the DC area, where I lived as a young child, brick houses are everywhere. I think red brick comes and goes in popularity. Right now, in Atlanta, red brick does not seem to be 'in' - many of the Georgians being built now are either painted or a soft color brick is used.

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  8. There are many things that can be done with the mortar to adjust the look of the brick, and work well when painting the brick.

    Another option is stucco over brick. Have you considered this?

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  9. That first house is breathtaking! Painted brick is fairly common here in Chicago. I still prefer the traditional red brick though.

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  10. Each and every house on this post is breathtaking! Can not wait to see your finished home! We do not see a lot of painted brick, more of the white washed variety, in this area (NY/Conn. border). There is however one home near us that I love, the whole house, bricks, stones, clapboard, shutters, everything is painted white...it is stunning!

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  11. What beautiful pictures, enjoyed this post! My favorite is the first photo, guess I like the classic brick. Must be a New England thing. Thanks for sharing!

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  12. A Georgian style home is a true favorite of mine. The pitch of the roof is one feature I love. This post is very thought-provoking as I have never really focussed on painted brick and now will take notice of it as I drive around neighborhoods.

    I truly enjoyed this post!

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  13. Beautiful pictures, enjoyed this post! My favorite is the first photo, guess I like the classic look of unpainted brick. I think it's a New England thing. Thanks for sharing.

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  14. We are on the coast of N.C. Painted brick here is a disaster due to the humidity and moss and mold. It takes on a lovely green tint.;) It is beautiful in your area though. Great post!

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  15. i live in a painted brick house in st. louis- not too many in my area. mostly unpainted brick & original wood siding in my neighborhood.
    i actually have a bit of a dilemma with my house- it's an American 4-square with a brick addition on the back, and the addition is unpainted. i would LOVE to have the whole house look lime-washed... but i'd have to strip the paint off the original part of the home. i'm guessing that's pretty pricey, or maybe ill-advised! oh well... it will look nice with the back half painted to match. it looks silly right now- like a kid with a t-shirt & no pants on! : )
    great post- love the pictures!!

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  16. Love the architecture of all of these homes. I live in Arizona and there are no brick houses. They are all stucco with red tile roofs. I would love any of the homes you have shown. They are all stunning. Hugs, Marty

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  17. I love painted brick houses and would have one. I don't see them much up here in Kentucky or in Florida but I did when I lived in Georgia.

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    Replies
    1. I live in Kentucky and am so wanting to paint my home. I have made the comment to others and they look at me like I am crazy. I love painted brick and I think I may be getting my husband on board...perhaps I should just dive in and change the trend here.

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    2. I too live in KY. We have had a historic home in the family since the turn of the 1900s. The house was built circa 1804. While my great grandparents lived in the house it was painted. I am guessing in the mid 1950s based on old family photographs. It is a crisp white federal Kentucky four square with black shutters and a black metal roof. It sits quimajestically on a hill near the edge of town. Unfortunately the family home and farm was inherited by a second wife, who gave it to her grandchildren.

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  18. i can still remember my favorite house,
    it was in westchester county,n.y.
    it was all brick, painted white with black shutters.
    the front door was painted a lacquered red, and
    it had an aged copper overhang.
    that was over 30 years ago!
    i can still see it in my minds eye.

    xx

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  19. You are speaking my language here! I love painted brick, new or wearing off!

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  20. I am enjoying reading about what style of house is prevalent in the areas where my readers live!

    Atlanta definitely has a lot of brick; thinking about Buckhead, I would say this is by far the most common cladding on a home. Cedar shake seems to be popular too, for a more casual style home. There are definitely stone homes too - of course, this is more expensive. There are definitely stucco homes. Some wood siding. Keep in mind that the Buckhead area is my frame of reference, not the suburbs.

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  21. Instead of 'thinking' my brick needs painting now I 'know' it does. Hmm: limewashing, whitewashing or painting?

    Gorgeous post stuffed with incredible visuals and verbage.

    Designing landscapes around Atlanta I'm seeing painted brick at all price points. Especially love seeing tiny old ranchburgers painted. They look like they've been let out of jail!! Ha, paint your house for 4k and increase property value 8k.

    Garden & Be Well, XO Tara

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  22. Beautiful post! Definitely agree with what was said about painted brick making an imposing house seem more approachable and welcoming. I love the painted hand made bricks on Lori Tippins house. Only painted houses here (45 mins from Toronto) are in the older section of town.

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  23. These homes are all beautiful, but please please please do the appropriate research before painting your brick! It's not a simple matter of slapping on a coat of paint. Brick is a porous material and needs to "breath." Painting it blocks its ability to do so and often ends up damaging the brick over time. I believe there are products you can use to prepare the surface, but I've never looked into it too much.

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  24. Lovely post! We live in Central Texas, and although I have seen some of the older homes being painted, I have not seen many newer homes made of brick -- mostly stone. I've been debating painting our "buff colored brick" house, but I wonder if the color I would pick would be so similar to the brick that it would hardly be worth it. Makes me feel a little better after seeing your last photo and comments. Maybe I'll just embrace the buff! Again, thanks for a wonderful post!

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  25. Love reading your posts since I live in Metro Atlanta. :-) My fav is definitely the first one that you showed...the brick Georgian. I'd love to know what they have climbing up the front. I've always heard ivy will damage brick, so I wonder what they used. The effect is so beautiful with the red brick. My second fav look was the washed brick. Thanks for the home tour! Susan

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  26. what gorgeous homes you have displayed. i cannot imagine being able to decide on the unlimited details for constructing my own house so KUDOS to you for the undertaking, and for showing us your inspirations. i will spend lots of time reviewing these homes for something to incorporate chez-moi. if i lived in atlanta i would spend all my time roaming the streets looking at the lovelies!! the city must be amazing with all those beauties! jkj

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  27. I live in Uruguay, near Montevideo. The most (old) houses are painted. But I like brick - with white elements (windows, door/s...). Beautiful pictures!

    Hugs for this post

    VINTAGE

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  28. I live in Washington, DC, where there are many beautiful brick homes of the Georgian or French Mansard style. My favorite brick home, and I see many here, has a washed effect where the white color appears to be peeling off. Having said this, there is a pretty (new) brick building in downtown Hershey, Pennsylvania, which uses a light salmon-colored brick. Just beautiful with ecru painted shutters. Thank you for your great post!

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  29. I became a fan of painted brick while working in Memphis, where new brick homes are nearly always painted to appear old. They layer tone on tone tans and khakis, which always look cool during their hot summers. Thx for the great photos.

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  30. What a beautiful post! I enjoyed every bit of it. I'm also a fan of painted brick, as well as Georgian colonial homes.

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  31. I LOVE painted brick houses! Although I live in Houston now, I am from Shreveport, Louisiana, and there are hundreds of charming brick homes there.My question is,. why don't more people do this? It would improve the look of all the zillions of atrocious brick houses that builders have been throwing up {sic} for the past few decades. Painting the brick on those things, and changing out the cheap leaded glass front- doors to solid wood, would go a long way in giving those horrors a little curb appeal.

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  32. I love the painted brick and the "washed" affect. I don't think you could go wrong with any of those options.Good luck on making your decision!

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  33. Holly, I grew up in an older part of Dallas with many lovely traditional homes. I never really thought about it, but I was always attracted to the houses with painted or sort of "white washed" brick - I think because it gives them an older look. When the "McMansions" were first being built, (as in, tearing down the cute cottages with charm to just fill the entire lot with ostentatious house) we used to refer disdainfully to the new ones as another "red brick,white paint". You have given some beautiful examples of both red brick and painted brick done in the right way. Lovely, lovely photos. Hope your house project is going well!

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  34. Love these grand brick homes you have in Atlanta! There are hardly any brick homes here in Nor Cal, but our last house in Seattle was a Georgian Colonial. I always wanted to paint it but never had the guts to do it. If I saw this post 6 years ago, i would have!

    Serena

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  35. I live in Tacoma, Washington and I cannot think of even one example of painted brick out here. It is very interesting, but I must say that I prefer the whitewash or limewash to the full painting.

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  36. I live in Georgia, so I see lots of painted brick - and I love it. I have always wondered how often re-painting is required. Does the paint adhere to the bricks better than to wood? I love the whitewashed look and Ty Larkins home. Perfect.
    -Trish

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  37. What a gorgeous collection of brick homes. Whitewashed brick does have a more European flair, it gives the look of limestone that is so widely used here. I was born in Virginia so I am partial to that style of home, I think they have lovely proportions. I also love that French style home in the second image.
    Bonne chance on your decisions. I'm positive it will be beautiful whatever way you choose to go.
    Happy Sunday to you,
    Mimi

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  38. Hi,

    I live in Dallas and I do see homes that have whitewashed and painted brick. We, too, have seen an interest in homes that have a more French feeling, and so many homes here are now clad in limestone. When we were deciding whether to stucco our house or do a brick and stucco finish we considered the option you call a mortar wash. Here we call it a slurry treatment and it is stunning. Ultimately we wanted the smoother look of stucco but that slurry finish is just so warm and lovely. Plus it is great for maintenance, and mellows over time beautifully.

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  39. Beautiful post. When I visit Atlanta I always comment to my husband on the painted brick houses. It seems so much more prevalent there than in East Tennessee. I have dreamed of painting our brick, but am a little worried about the upkeep. I may do some research. Thanks for the food for thought and the lovely images!

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  40. I would like to write to you just to tell you that it is delightfully refreshing to read your blog, they are always interesting, didactic, knowledgeable and enjoyable too. I live in Europe, I read many US decorating/decorative blogs and find that many times people overlap business, interest and personal life in a way that sometimes are unnecessary to the rest of us readers. They end up sounding "fake" many times and too often just repeat each other to compete among each other and leaving us readers unattended... they carry on about their jealousy... I am probably unfair because a blog is a the old fashion scrapbook that our grandmother's and mother were accustomed to cherish.. which means it is entitled to be personal.

    This said: CONGRATULATIONS once again on your blog!
    Also, we have many brick houses in Spain, but usually never painted!

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  41. I appreciate how you strive to give credit to the architects and designers whenever possible. Great post, and very enjoyable.

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  42. Hi Holly,
    I think it would be a lot of fun to post a sketch of your new home and have your readers weigh in on your decision... it helps if you know what the actual exterior is going to look like.

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  43. What a wonderful post! I love the pictures but I love the discussion even more! I do believe region matters as does neighborhood. My neighborhood has quite a few painted brick homes and they are amongst the prettiest. There was a home I admired quite a bit but it had a combination stone/stucco/brick look that smacked of new construction spec homes. Someone bought it, bricked the whole thing, painted over it and then sandblasted it. AMAZING. We choose stucco (it's a greek revival and marble didn't make sense ;) Can't wait to see what you decide! Marija

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  44. What beautiful homes! Here in Australia it's quite common to see brick homes either rendered or 'bagged'- similar to the image where you can still see the outline of the bricks under a coat of painted render. We are about to start rendering our brick home very soon, and it makes it look so much fresher and brighter - can't wait!
    Love your blog!
    Kerri x

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  45. Oh, the possibilities! I love houses that have character, so I wouldn't be able to say I have a preference of one over the other.

    Sadly, around my neck of the woods....there is way to much siding/brick combinations!

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  46. We don't have much call for this in Northern California...sadly. We see some of it in the older neighborhoods.

    I have to say, though, that I'm pretty much ready to move into the Stan Dixon home. That is gorgeous!

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  47. Being from Atlanta, I love painted brick and have always wanted to have a home with such. I now live in Dayton, Ohio, in an older area, where there are several painted brick homes. My home now is an ugly orange-tone brick and I, off course, want to paint it. I noticed in your blog, most if not all the homes were painted a lighter color. I am considering something a little darker. Because it is not the norm here, I would like to know a little more about the proper way to paint brick before I hire someone. Anyone have any insight on this?

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  48. Painted brick is one of my favorite exterior materials...it's in my 'someday dream house' file too. Growing up in the painfully practical rural Midwest, I don't think I knew of but two or three painted brick houses. Much like stained woodwork, farm folk believe in leaving things as nature intended them to look. Thankfully here in Birmingham, (especially in my Mountain Brook neighborhood) painted brick abounds. There are many 1920's Colonial Revival homes here of painted brick, but also some Tudor and French examples.

    Another wonderful post full of beautiful images!

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  49. I love your blog and agree--brick is all the rage here in Atlanta, and I love limewashed brick. At least one of the houses I think I've seen before in Buckhead, too. I love the distinctive architecture that comes with living in an older city.

    I saw an episode of Sarah's House today and they talked about some treatment that actually penetrated the brick and allowed it to be tinted any color, and is wasn't a paint. I thought it was interesting--you might want to check it out.

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  50. Holly dear, I think you should write a book about stunning brick homes. A coffe table book. I would pre-order it! You have a great, great eye. And your texts are always so informative and well written. Happy new week! ox Mon

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  51. I can look over and over again to all these fantastic houses!
    Thank you for sharing!
    xx
    Greet

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  52. Holly,
    I adore many of the homes you posted. In Boston, brick is very common. My first house was painted brick with a box out that had a copper roof and wrought iron window boxes. My house now is 1930's Royal Barry Wills Colonial - the front is wood and the sides and back are chippy brick. It is a common painting technique here. Red brick that is painted white and them blasted to remove much of the paint. I wish the entire house was brick, but I was told that at the time it was built it was more prestigious to have wood sided house, becasue it showed your wealth in being able to replace the wood and repair it as needed. Not sure the validity, but interesting just the same.
    Great post!
    xx-Gina

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  53. My home is painted dark taupe brick. It looks so much more pulled together than without the paint. It is also a natural native sand stone brick that had pink undertones and would never be a beauty.
    I say paint!
    L.

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  54. I also adore painted brick homes, but I think the brick and mortar style make a huge impact!! A woodmould brick really gives more of a handmade, authentic texture when painting exteriors vs the wire cut standard brick. I personally like when the paint has some wear to it - I have painted brick houses and then immediately had them pressure washed to age the overall look and it turns out great!! Thanks for the post!

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  55. Now this is not in regards to your new build but personally I find historic brick homes that have been painted to be a travesty. There is no good way of restoring the splendor of good bricks. You can use chemically intensive gels or your can high pressure blast but both can potentially damage the brick and don't always do the job. Take the Beechwood house in Newport for example, which has been recently sold. It was brick all the way through the early 60's from what I've heard yet today it is cream and yellow; like a lemon meringue pie.

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  56. I love the houses on West Paces and Collier... the whitewashed brick is my favorite, i love walking through those neighborhoods and looking at the homes!

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  57. I have toyed with this idea once too often but wondered how I could convince my husband. This wonderful detailed post is the ammunition I need:)

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  58. I also prefer brick to stucco, and I love the look of so many of these homes: especially the lime-washed one. There are a lot of great bricks that are already made to have that effect; my parents used some with a very similar look to the limewashed home when they built their home last year. Also, I'm not sure if this is an issue in ATL as it is in Houston, but stucco has a horrible tendency to develop a mildew issue; brick, on the other hand, does not!

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  59. I love painted brick when it feels as if it's always been that way...

    Especially love it when there's some type of vine growing on the house- adding to the feeling of age.

    And Marija's mention of sandblasting after painting sounds like a great idea!

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  60. The external walls of our c.1972 Aussie 'beauty' are just about to get the Treatment. If the folk who are residing in the house in 2072 whinge about having to sandblast the paint off the old bricks, they'll have to dig me up first. We did the same to our dark open-face tumbled brick internal walls 3 years ago & it was a revelation of biblical proportions! Your fantastic post is so wonderfully researched, it's just sealed the deal for me, thank you.
    Millie ^_^

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  61. I love this!!! I wanted to do this when we built our house. love love painted brick.

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  62. wow, look at that, very creative and inspiring, I wish I could design something like that

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  63. I would love to have any of these houses ;) I think the red brick ones look a little more homey.

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  64. Thanks for the kind words about our blog! We do have many painted brick houses in Atlanta. I particularly like the limewashed or whitewashed brick. Having read this post, I'm noticing even more painted brick houses.

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  65. You and I have the same dream home!!!! I am in love with brick, Georgian style - and PERFECT symmetry. Which is why I also find colonial rather bewitching. Thanks for giving me so much to dream about!

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  66. This is a wonderful post! I really enjoyed all the lovely examples. I do lean toward liking a white painted brick over a red brick (although aged antique bricks are gorgeous). We are in earthquake country, so most homes are not made of brick.

    Again, nice post!

    xo,
    cristin

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  67. Stunning post as always, I really love the painted look! I can't wait to see your new house!

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  68. Oh what gorgeous houses. I also love brick, but brick and stone together!? LOVE IT!
    Lila Ferraro
    Queen Bedroom Sets

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  69. TTI,

    Fantastic post! This goes down in the books as one of the most informative. It is amazing what you learn when you are constructing a home!

    ~Angela

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  70. Holly, I have tried to read and comment in this post probably five times, but every time I looked through it I would got so excited by one of the houses, I would have to stop and read about it and them got distracted by something else.... I think that is the mark of a great post... it gets people excited. I love the house Rodolfo did. I emailed it all around. It's so beautiful, and I love the paint combination. A very very wonderful post, as always.

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  71. I hope to have a painted brick house one day. these are all quite gorgeous.

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  72. We live in a red brick house in the NYC area. We desired to have our brick painted (after having resided in the South) and were sternly warned not to due to the harsh winters - apparently the paint flakes off easily. Still loving the painted brick the photos.

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  73. BRILLIANT POST. i love painted brick and adore the lime washed brick... this is a wonderful reference for us all to keep in mind... thank you! have a wonderful weekend..xx

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  74. I love the painting brick - It adds texture and soften the lines of the house showcasing the best of the architectural details.

    Great entry!

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  75. A. Hays Town seems like a brilliant architect! I wish there was more information about him available. The understated luxury this blog exudes truly inspire me!

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  76. i know this has very little to do with painted brick, but i would love to see floor plans/elevations of the house you are building! Someone as creative as you will probably come up with my dream home before i do! I love your style and would like to see how it translates in the home you are building!

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  77. Wow just stumbled upon your blog. I live in Georgia and have a Georgian brick home. I've thought of painting but worried about the extra maintenance. Then I was told you don't want to put paint on brick, but a special masonry coating they now have. See here: http://www.ebuild.com/articles/458555.hwx

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  78. I already posted previously, just wanted you to know I am having withdrawal symptoms, for a blog, yours (wink)

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  79. I love painted brick, in fact my personal home used to be a red brick georgian. When we renovated a couple of years ago, we wanted more of a french country style home, and did a cream wash on our brick. It turned out great! We purposely left some of the red showing to give the home more of a weathered look

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  80. Can we PLEASE paint the Georgia Governor's Mansion? I think you should start a petition on you blog.
    : )

    Beautiful post!

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  81. Michael JavelosMay 4, 2010 at 5:01 AM

    I believe the brickwork of the houses by the architect William Lawrence Bottomley are amongst the most beautiful in the country. Many are to be found in Richmond, Va., but he was quite prolific and there are fine examples of his work to be found along the Eastern Seaboard.

    Many thanks for this fine article.

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  82. Thanks for this collection. We have been wrestling with painting over our brick (a rather hideous burnt orange) for a year. This tipped the scales.

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  83. This post is just what I've been looking for to learn a little more about painted brick - a look that I find very beautiful. I am a Canadian moving to Wilmington, NC (20 mins from the coast) and have purchased a 2 year old home that I love for many reasons but the brick colour is just so boring - a muddy grey/mocha colour with mud coloured mortar! It really needs some help. I have learned a lot from your post and will be looking forward to investigating painting brick further when we finally move in August. I truly hope there is something we can do to give this house the face lift it deserves! Wish me luck and thanks for some great information.

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  84. I have an older brick home and I have been seriously wondering if I could paint it to give it a makeover. When I found your post, I decided to DEFINATELY paint my house. I'm so excited!!

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  85. This post was so helpful and informative. I was searching for painted brick homes and found your post. I am not loving the brick color of my home as much as I used to and was just thinking about how it would look painted. I really like the lime wash look, keeping a hint of the original brick. My favorite home in my neighborhood is painted brick, and the only one I've really seen in my town. Though a town away it's very popular, and I have friends who have painted their own homes. Now to convince the hubs ; ).
    Take Care, Carrie

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  86. Beautiful and amazing! I am thrilled to have found your blog!

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  87. Our house has painted brick and we want to give it that worn look. It isn't so easy to find opinions from people who live with painted brick. I am glad I found your blog. I am looking forward to keeping the painted brick and putting in the effort to make it look more worn, rather than freshly painted.There aren't many worn painted brick homes in our area of Illinois near the big city.I do wish I knew how to go about the procedure for aging the solid painted areas.

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  88. Love your blog and this post couldn't be better...any leads (books, magazines, architects, photos) to single story brick Georgians? Renovating a brick house that needs some exterior rethinking.

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  89. This is very refreshing to find after reading so many posts on the net that are negative about painting brick. I was wondering about painting an interior brick wall fireplace. I have a floor to ceiling one that I would love to lighten and brighten. Any thoughts? Thanks!

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  90. The most amazing in brick houses is to compare their looks before and after painting, when I was traveling to Serbia I saw a new trend in painting houses, they don't use a single color, but paint different images, often from children books.

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  91. I live right outside of Charlotte, NC. Unpainted bricks seems to be the most prominent here. I LOVE painted brick and am thinking about painting the brick on a house we currently have a contract on. Most people I have talked to around here think it's crazy to paint brick. I have been told that Charlotte is known for brick. Unfortunately, it makes a lot of the houses look very unoriginal. I think the paint adds a unique feel to it. I think we would be using the Boral Pastelcote. Love this post, as well as several other posts I have found on Pinterest.

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  92. Very nice photos! They are truly inspiring. It may time to be able to complete the right look for your abode but with the proper design, building materials and schedule on how to do it you can definitely have the house of your dreams.

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  93. I, like many of you would like to paint my brick house but worry. Im going to photoshop a snapshot to see if it gives me the effect Im hoping for before investing and before doing something that cant be undone. Love the site!

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  94. I missed this post the first time around. Thank you for linking to it.

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  95. hi,
    as a newer resident in the MILWAUKEE wi area from birmingham alabama, we have discovered the local find of "cream city brick."
    when the germans and other settled here in around the 1870's, they began constructin homes of brick and were shocked to see that the fired brick from this area was CREAM in color
    due to the chemical makeup of the water in lake michigan .they expected to see the red brick they were familiar with form the old country.that has been so interesting to see as i have seen many of the red brick homes in the south/virginia, georgia, etc.

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