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Our Painted Brick Exterior + Backyard Projects: Part One

by | May 30, 2018 | Curb Appeal, Decorating Inspiration, My Backyard, My Seattle House, My Side Yard

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Our Painted Brick Exterior + Backyard Projects: Part OneDutch Door source and FAQ

Greetings, friends! I’ve been wanting to get back to talking about our exterior and patio projects for such a long time. Good news, though, we’re finally nearing the “finish line!” That’s not to say I’ve done everything I want to do yet, that would take a few more years! But we’re just about to be “finished” with what we started, and even completed things we didn’t originally plan to do.

Makeovers don’t start with an “after shot” so I want to share what led up to the upcoming reveals by offering a peek into the thought process and stages of our projects, too. So over the next couple of days and weeks you’ll be brought up to date on what we’ve been doing, get some sneak peeks (be sure to follow me on Instagram, too!) and lots of good ol’ after shots coming up, too!

2020 UPDATE: This update post was in 2018! Click HERE to see the latest of our house in 2020!

This has been such a crazy story with unexpected twists and turns and delays, so I really don’t even know where to begin!

But I’ve never shown you the back of our house, before or after it was painted, so we might as well start there. This is where a big part of the makeover took place, so you’ll be seeing this side of my house quite a bit in the upcoming weeks!

Here’s what the back of our house looked like the day we moved in.

Our Painted Brick Exterior + Backyard Projects: Part One

So when we bought this house, it was a fairly typical looking brick rambler. It wasn’t the style I ordinarily  would have thought to look at, but the Seattle housing market was (is) crazy so we were looking at nearly everything.

The previous owner of this house had told us ‘you are going to love living here’. She was right! We do.

There were things we knew we would want to update, but it was solid and well-maintained! This is the kind of house where you just feel happy to be in it. It’s filled with glorious light and a wide view of water, trees, sky and mountains as you look out the back of the house. The property has beautiful blooming trees and the sunsets are spectacular. And, we are within walking distance of a beach (on Puget Sound)! We really couldn’t ask for anything more.

All in all, this house had quite a bit going for it from day one. Yet even so, these types of houses in our area are sometimes torn down to build something new and more grand (when we moved in there was actually an empty lot next door, the house had been torn down. But now there’s a big house!).

Even though I’d personally rather preserve structures when possible, I understand that remodeling an old house can be difficult and very expensive. Building new often makes more financial sense and offers people the chance to get the features, views and square footage they want. But for us, we’re ok with our modest home! In fact, we love modest :).

Our Painted Brick Exterior + Backyard Projects: Part One

Kitchen Makeover

While the footprint and basic elements of our house remain primarily as they were, it’s been fun to watch how a transformation has taken place in other ways. I often say at heart she is still the same ‘ol gal she always was, she’s just starting to look and feel a little more updated and rejuvenated. Or dare I say spunky. May we all feel that way as we age, right?

There are so many ways to transform a house inside and out, but there’s nothing quite like the transformative power of paint.

You may already know we painted our exterior brick white (as I’ve showed the white brick from the side yard ever since we revealed our kitchen last year). It’s made such a difference in the feel of our home! We love it.

Our Painted Brick Exterior + Backyard Projects: Part One

I know some people get very sensitive about painting brick, or worry that it isn’t a good idea to paint brick, but we have ZERO regrets even two years after painting ours. We’ve had no trouble at all with the paint. It still looks fantastic! I expect the paint to last for years to come. It’s Sherwin Williams (Reserved White).

Like any painted house, of course, eventually it will need another coat of paint. Yes, that’s the beauty of NOT painting brick, you don’t have to repaint it! But if you don’t like the brick you have, why live with it for years and years just so you can avoid having to repaint it years down the road?

I kind of think you should love the home you have, you know? ;) I’ve lived in a couple of painted brick homes and I’ve always loved the look, so we took the plunge and are so glad we did. White brick makes this house feel like home.

Our Painted Brick Exterior + Backyard Projects: Part One

Now, there were quite a few other things I knew we could improve at the back of the house. Some we could change right away, some in time. I did not “love the awning I had” so I was very happy to see that go before we got the house painted. (I’d also love to relocate those electrical boxes, but that will be a project for a future time).

Our Painted Brick Exterior + Backyard Projects: Part One

So once again, this is what the back of the house looked like the day we moved in.

Our Painted Brick Exterior + Backyard Projects: Part One

And this is what our house now! Two years ago it became a cleaner, fresher painted white brick house (Reserved White by Sherwin Williams)!

UPDATED PHOTO 2020: Click here for details on our Trex Deck

We are very happy with how paint transformed our home! Yet the exterior projects didn’t stop with the paint (can’t stop, won’t stop!).

Our Painted Brick Exterior + Backyard Projects: Part One

Click HERE for more before and afters of our home (2021 update)!

So in addition to catching you up on the completion of the side yard projects, I’m super excited to show you all that transpired this winter around the back of the house, too!

Stay tuned, friends, more to come … (find POST TWO on our outdoor projects here!)


  1. Sharon

    Hi Melissa! This post is so timely for me as we have just purchased a home in our old neighborhood and are in the process of updating which includes painting the brick white. I will say renovating is not for sissies but seeing the old girl transforming to a sassier version of her self is fun! Our home is red orange brick with a matching huge deck in the same shade…can’t wait to transform the outside but we have to submit everything to the HOA for approval so that will be a few
    months down the road…just hoping the workers finish up the partial inside reno before we move in next week…no stress?…wish us luck! I hope ours turns out as beautiful as yours….

    • Melissa @ The Inspired Room

      Oh, yay, I hope it all comes together for you soon. What a fun project. Fingers crossed it is everything you dream it will be! Thank you!

  2. Deanna Rabe

    I love the way it looks painted white! I am all for painting to update and improve the look of a house!

    Looking forward to your updates and to see what you’ve done outside!

    • Melissa @ The Inspired Room

      Thank you, Deanna! :) Looking forward to sharing the whole project, so I appreciate you following along!

  3. Jen

    What a transformation! Beautiful. I’ve painted interior fireplace white but it’s so impactful on a larger scale. Lovely.

    • Melissa @ The Inspired Room

      Yes, it was a big project so I’m relieved it turned out ha! Thank you so much!

  4. Nancy

    Good morning? This is definitely my favorite home of yours, that I have enjoyed following with you!! Love the windows, the large yard, the white brick, etc. I wouldn’t change anything you have done so far. Looking forward to seeing more. Enjoy your day?

  5. Tracie

    Melissa, you gave your brick home a beautiful update with the white paint. I can’t believe how even the electrical boxes blend in. Can’t wait to see the rest of the reveal!

    • Melissa @ The Inspired Room

      Paint is so good at hiding things you don’t want to focus on! :) Thank you, Tracie.

  6. Deborah Derden

    The white makes the house look so much more expensive, not “old-fashioned” as my teenage daughter is so fond on saying. In her world, “old-fashioned” is the ultimate no-no in homes.

    • Melissa @ The Inspired Room

      I know exactly what she means :). Up to date is where it’s at! Thank you Deborah.

  7. romeogirl

    Love the painted brick. We painted the brick on our second house when we were young and energetic. I really want to do our current house (No. 6) but don’t know if I have the energy. :)

  8. Linda Grubbs

    I’m excited to see what’s coming! I love your sweet house. ?

  9. Seana Turner

    That is a drastic and beautiful difference. There is a white painted brick house around the corner from where I live and I’ve always admired it. So classy. Best of luck as you continue on!

  10. Taste of France

    Bravo to you. It looks so modern. No reason to live with 1950s brick and no reason to rip it out, either. A coat of paint is so much better for the environment than tearing down and building new. Homes can last for generations. We own some apartments that date to the 1600s.

    • Carolyn

      I didn’t know they even had apartments in the 1600s!

  11. Linda


  12. Jojo

    Melissa, I love a painted brick home and I love yours! The white looks so bright and fresh! Looking forward to seeing all that you’ve done to your exteriors, yard & gardens! ???

  13. JoJo

    Melissa, I love a painted brick home & I love your lovely home painted white! Gorgeous! I’m really looking forward to seeing the progress and completed reveals of your home’s exterior spaces, yard & garden areas! ?

  14. Gretchen Mercer

    I love the white painted brick. We lived in an early 1950s home with a feature fireplace and built in planter the same color brick as your exterior. I have never cared for that color, so we painted it a creamy white. It totally transformed it into the cozy, cottage look I wanted. Your home is beautiful!

  15. Franki

    In this case white is right!!

  16. Kelly

    Love it! I live in a 1947 brick bungalow that’s painted a creamy white and I came across some pictures online before it was painted and no question paint adds so much curb appeal! Can’t wait to see your final reveal!

  17. Carolyn

    My husband and I have been living in our daughter’s house for 2+ years since our house was lost in a landslide. I thoroughly enjoy following along on your renovations as we wait for a settlement and (hopefully) FEMA buyout, and dream of eventually having a place of our own again. (Around here, with three boys 5 and under, I’m lucky if I can keep the place halfway picked up!)

    • Carolyn

      Oops, forgot my question: is the chimney painted too?

      • Melissa @ The Inspired Room

        Yes, the chimney is also painted, it looks great! I’ll try to get it in a pic down the road for ya. I’m so sorry about the landslide, that’s just awful. We had a house slip down the hill near us while we lived in Portland and it was so scary.

  18. Laura

    The painted brick makes the exterior look larger and more unified – love it!

  19. Beth

    What an amazing transformation! The white looks beautiful!

  20. Chris Creasy

    ? your white painted brick, Melissa! I am getting ready to paint my batton board lake house white and would like to get gooseneck exterior lights like you have. Do you know the manufacturer, or where you purchased them? Thx!

  21. Mary Elizabeth

    What color is the trim? I love the Reserved White!

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