My mother was ordering new grey leather furniture for the living room which gave me the opportunity to upgrade her dated fireplace! I had a hard time convincing her to do it but we ended up at Home Depot and $11 later it turned out fabulous!! If you're on a budget this a great project for you...
Here's the brick fireplace before I started. You need to dust and wipe off all the dust/ cobwebs it has collected before painting. Then you will need to put newspaper and tape around the fireplace/walls if you don't want a mess! It does "splatter" sometimes so this just helps.
After it's dry, mix 1 part white paint with 2-3 parts water in a container (preferably a clear one). I just used an angle brush and mixed it REALLY well.
This was the paint we chose at Home Depot...BEHR paint and primer Flat pure white. I am no expert and was unsure if you needed the primer in it but the guy at the paint counter said it'd work fine. You could probably use any ol' white paint you find!
So the technique I used was to brush the paint mixture over 3 bricks at a time, waited a few seconds then used an old bath towel and wiped it off. This leaves the perfect "white wash" effect. If you want the brick whiter, leave it on longer before wiping or add less water to the paint. As you can see above it turned out pretty nice! I painted the mantel white to finish it off. Happy painting!