Ideas to change a brick fireplace to modern

Written by sara john
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Ideas to change a brick fireplace to modern
Small changes can turn an old brick fireplace into a modern focal point. (Ryan McVay/Lifesize/Getty Images)

A fireplace remodel is one way to create a modern feel in a home, and can often be done with a few minor changes. After you've made a complete home overhaul, you may need a new fireplace design to create a more cohesive feel in the design. Standard brick fireplaces can date a room and often become damaged and worn over time. Whether you're changing the whole thing or just making a little upgrade, you can make a big splash by adding modern pieces and materials to your fireplace.

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Slate is one of the most versatile and wearproof materials on the market and has been used for decades to update standard fireplaces. Its durability and relative low cost have made it a growing favourite to improve the look of fireplaces. The stone is naturally heat- and water-resistant and requires little maintenance. Alhough primarily dark in colour, slate can be found in shades ranging from black and grey to pink, red and brown, and is often mottled with different colours, usually warm earth tones. Slate comes in a variety of shapes, sizes and textures, making it ideal for both a finished or rustic look. You can choose either standard slate tiles or "broken" pieces, which are nonstandard shapes that can be used to create a unique look. Most types of slate can be applied right over existing materials, making it fairly easy to change the look of your fireplace.


Ideal for a quick, easy and inexpensive upgrade, fireproof paint can bring new life to old brick. Several companies, hardware stores and home improvement outlets offer kits to make designing and painting a fireplace easier. The painting process is generally quick and inexpensive, and it can make a big difference for brick. To keep the design modern, fireplace paint can either be applied to blend with the rest of the room, or it can be done to contrast the rest of the room. Bold colours --- red, chocolate brown and black --- are particularly popular, depending on the style you prefer. Additionally, coloured tiles can be installed around the face of the fireplace and throughout the hearth. These tiles, in a variety of colours, finishes and textures, can add depth and interest to a newly painted fireplace.


For today's homeowners, mantels can make the difference between having an out-of-date look and a modern focal point. Mantel styles have become more varied than ever and provide more than just a spot for family pictures. Traditional full-sized mantels are still used, though the materials and colours offer more variety. Slate in a variety of colours has become popular, especially in rooms with a sleek, modern design. Hardwoods in dark, natural colours or white have stayed in style for country or eclectic rooms, while some minimalist rooms opt to get rid of a mantel altogether. To create an interesting focal point, use a selection of framed art, vases or other interesting pieces to make the space fun and unique.

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