And so, against the advice of the majority, I decided to experiment with stripping back the bright red fireplace.
After lots of online research, I came across a product which is apparently 100% made from soybeans, is non-toxic and practically odour free ie. the perfect thing if one has a small girl running about. The thick gel also encapsulates the paint, reducing the risk of airborne particles, which is particularly reassuring when lead paint might be involved.
So I bought some, not believing for one moment that it would work. We spread the gel on thickly overnight and woke up the next morning to find this
Which a bit of work with a scraper (the paint by this stage is all soft and gloopy) and a wire brush in the grout, soon turned into this. They still need another clean and a wax, but I think they’re pretty much there. And no paint to be seen.
So what do you think?
Should I persevere? They’re not the most beautiful bricks in the world and I’m a bit worried about the whole thing seeming too heavy and dark (will definitely get rid of the horrible dark stove at some point), but I think they have a certain charm.
If I do continue, has anyone got any ideas as to what I could put into those three recesses? Something interesting and fun which will lighten the whole thing up and break up the big expanse of brick.
I’m currently thinking something syroco, spray painted lime green or tangerine (thanks to Pink Loves Brown for the idea). In fact something like those bronze panels she’s just bought would be perfect. (I haven’t run this past the Husband yet though). But has anyone got any other thoughts? Tiles? Plaster reliefs? Ironwork? Mosaic?
Excuse the prosaic title of this post, but I really want people to be able to find this post when they search.