Fireplace transformation in progress

Apparently my limit on restraining from DIY projects is 11 days, because I’m officially at it again. However, I have to admit that week and a half when I didn’t pick up a power tool or paint brush was glorious. My house got cleaned. I actually prepared a weekly dinner menu. Groceries were bought. I saw the bottom of laundry hampers. Essentially, I got a taste of how normal people live.

But, alas, I’ve never claimed to be normal. So on the heels of our epic hickory flooring project and the “I will pull all my hair out if I have to paint another piece of baseboard molding” project, I’ve picked up my Purdy brush once again to attack our fireplace surround.


Perhaps you’ll recall my post asking for suggestions on what color I should paint the surround. The vast majority of you agreed I should paint it the same color as our trim molding (a creamy off-white), so that is what I’m planning to do. The surround was formerly stained in a mahogany color, which worked great for awhile.


But with all the various woods going on around here – hickory floors, cherry kitchen cabinets, mahogany TV console and side table – it was starting to look a little too, well, woodsy. So I’m painting the fireplace surround. Today I put on the first coat of primer.



Check out my little photo bomber. 😉

My next question is, should I put a second coat of primer on the whole thing or should I just move on with the first coat of semi-gloss trim paint? I am painting over stained wood that had a thin urethane topcoat. I lightly sanded the finish (and I mean lightly … I can be a bit lazy when it comes to this step). So I’m not confident the one coat of primer will make the paint stick super well. With regard to primer, are two coats better than one or am I just wasting my time?

I’m hoping to knock out this project by the end of the week, so stay tuned for the final reveal.

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11 Responses

  1. Haha! I know exactly what you mean about “normal” people. If I’m not in the garage, we eat like kings. It may be nice to pick up my boys from pre-school once without paint or sawdust in my hair.

  2. Tammy Gilleland says:

    The fireplace is giving the room a fresh crisp look. The white primer already makes it look soft and clean. A good choice and will look great when done.

    I work from home as a consultant. When my work day is finished at 5 pm, I am always working on a project around the house. Last week, I refinished two pieces of furniture. I’ve cleaned every closet, cabinet and drawer in my house over the past few weeks. My husband said, “can you please sit still? You are making me tired just watching you.”

    There is just so much that needs to be done after living in the same home for 23 years.

  3. I think that would depend on what kind of primer you are using…we use Zinzer primer that requires no sanding…

  4. Liliana Wells says:

    One coat of primer should hold the paint well. After the paint is dry, see if the paint is thin in places. Or live with one coat for awhile and see how you like the depth of the color. What kind of primer are you using? I think you should lightly sand it after the primer. Good luck. It looks better already.

  5. Donna Gibson says:

    One coat of primer will do well. It covered the dark look, and the regular paint will look fantastic. Love the white too. It will brighten the room for sure! Make sure you have plenty of ventilation, cause you do have kids in the house. You don’t want a headache. Great project!

  6. Nikki says:

    I think the 1 coat of primer would be plenty. It makes me want to do mine… Yours already looks so bright, clean and fresh I have mine painted black in an eggshell finish and lightly distressed, but the floor or I believe its called the hearth is in black granite so I really feel stuck with leaving it black because I do not want to sand it down and stain it, that would be more work then I can handle right now lol. Any advice or ideas would be greatly appreciated from anyone… Thank you 🙂

    • Susan says:

      I totally understand why you wouldn’t want to sand that down and start again! Maybe painting over the black might be your best bet if you’re really not digging the color anymore. I have seen some pictures of white surrounds with black hearths and they look pretty good. Thanks for the feedback and for stopping by.

  7. Dee says:

    I was just looking at your pillow post and saying didnt i just see that fireplace painted.And i did.LOL love the room wonderful job. Now get over here And work your magic on my house.

  8. Joy2Journey says:

    I have been away from projects too to catch up on all the household necessities! Ugh, my creative mind just wants to create … maybe I need a maid 😉 Cant wait to see the finish. Oh, wait, I am catching up on emails so maybe you are already done!!! Hugs

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