How to Paint a Concrete Hearth to Look Like Stone

In my last post I showed you how I transformed my brick fireplace using a fake stone product called AirStone. If you would like to see how I did it you can find the post here – DIY Budget Fireplace Makeover.  

DIY Stone Fireplace Makeover on a Buget

Today I am going to show you how you can paint a concrete hearth.

For Part 2 of my fireplace makeover – I painted the grey concrete hearth in front of the fireplace using a faux stone paint technique.  The original grey color of the concrete hearth looked off and the builder never finished off the edges so it was time to finally get it the way I always imagined.   With the help of some craft paint, sealer and AirStone, I was able to make the hearth look like it perfectly belongs with the new stone fireplace.

BEFORE: Fireplace Hearth

Grey slab with unfinished sides.  The dark streaks are just water that has not dried.

Fireplace-Hearth-Before

I never liked the gray and love the Autumn Mountain color of the AirStone so I went to work to get the two to look more in the same color family.

Faux Stone paint techniques

 

AFTER: Faux Stone Painted Fireplace Hearth

Faux paint Technique Stone

 

 

Step-by-Step-Instructions-2

 

 

Hearth-painting-supplies-ne

Supplies Needed:

AirStone
AirStone Adhesive
Molding:  3/8″ x 1-1/4″ Painted Stop
Hack Saw
Miter box
Pencil
Craft paint – Beige, Grey, Brown, Yellow Ochre.  I used Martha Stewart – Wet Cement, Apple Barrel Beachcomber Beige, Folk Art Yellow Ochre, Folk Art Butter Pecan, Apple Barrel Nutmeg Brown, Folk Art Linen.
Glaze – I used Martha Stewart Crafts Glaze, but any glazing liquid will work.  Valspar and Ralph Lauren each make one. 
Sea Sponge
Plate to mix paint on
Clear Matte Water Based Sealer  – a craft paint sealer will work fine. 
1/8” or small tipped paint brush
Wet Rag

 

How to paint a fireplace hearth

The height of the AirStone was about 1/4” too short to match the height around the edge of the hearth.

 

Molding-around-hearth

To solve the problem, I added white trim molding around the hearth to lift up the AirStone so the top of the AirStone would be the same height as the hearth.

The builder of my house never finished the edge around the hearth and left the floor very uneven.  Since the floor is uneven a few stones are slightly raised and a few are slightly lower.  In a way, this looks pretty natural.

 

AirStone-Around Fireplace Hearth

I wanted to nail the trim molding to the floor, but the wood floor is not thick and is directly on concrete, so I decided to use Liquid Nails to attach the trim molding to the floor.  Once that was secure, I added the stones using the AirStone adhesive.

 

AirStone-around-fireplace-h

 

How to Paint a Surface to Look Like Stone

Faux-Stone-Painting-techniq

1.  Place a dollop of paint from each color of craft paint onto a plate. In the middle add about 1/8 of a cup of glazing liquid.

 

How to create a stone surface with paint

2.  Dip a wet and then rung-out sponge into the paint a few times to mix the colors just a bit – not too much as you want to have color variations. Start dabbing the sponge onto the surface turning the sponge all different ways as you work.

 

Stone - Faux painting tutorial

3. Keep dipping the sponge in your paint and continue dabbing the surface to mottle it with paint.  Note: You can see the stone color with which I was trying to coordinate the hearth color.

 

How to paint faux stone

4.  Let dry.  Add a few more layers of paint following the same dabbing technique using the paint and glaze mixture until you are happy with how it looks.  Dab the paint on an angle, not in straight lines – it will look more natural.  If one spot looks too heavy, dab a damp rag over the surface to remove some of the paint.

5.  Once you like how it looks, apply 2 coats of matte water-based sealer to protect it. Let the first coat dry before applying the next.

 

How To Add the AirStone Stones to the Side of The Hearth

Faux-stone-paint-tips

1.  Figure out how many stones you will need and line them up. Cut any if necessary to fit.  I used two corner pieces, the rest of the stones were the flat edge type.  Apply the adhesive to the back and press into the side of the hearth, letting the adhesive ooze out of the top. Use a wet rag and your finger to clean the adhesive off the painted hearth.  Repeat on all the other stones and let dry.

Note:  You can add the stones around the hearth before painting the hearth.

 

Faux Stone Painting Tutorial

The adhesive is white. When it was dry, I went around with a thin tipped paint brush using cement colored paint to make the adhesive look a bit more like mortar.

Faux-Stone-Paint-Technique

 

 

Faux Stone paint technique

All done. Now the fireplace transformation is complete and I am one very happy DIYer.

 



Comments

  1. Nina says

    Hi. I love your DIY fireplace! I have a question about the paint though. Does the glazing liquid make the bricks look shiny at all? Why use the glaze? I’m guessing it helps spread the paint around before drying. But, my concern is that any glaze will look shiny. Thanks in advance for your reply. :)

    • says

      Hi Nina – Glazing liquid is not shiny, it is matte. I have used many different brands and none have been shiny. Glaze is the term for a medium that when mixed with paint makes the paint more transparent so you can layer paints and create depth in your finish. It takes the opaqueness out of paint. It will not add shine. My hearth is matte – no shine at all.

      • Nina says

        Thank you for explaining about glazes!! I didn’t know they help make the paint transparent. Wonderful info! I’m getting so motivated to try this. Thanks for your expertise and great instructions! :)

  2. Noor says

    Love it! This is exactly what I am looking for. However, I still have one small hurdle to overcome- the red brick hearth. I can airstone the front faces like you did, but it will be so ugly if I just repaint the bricks to match. suggestions?

  3. Sophie O'Brien says

    Hi Diane,

    I’ve just stumbled upon this fantastic tutorial. Your results are excellent and look very warm and natural.

    I would love to be able to do this with some very dated mottled grey slate tiles in my bathroom but am nervous given it is a wet area. Do you think it’d be crazy to attempt this? Thanks – Sophia

      • Sophie O'Brien says

        Thanks for your reply Diane.
        They will get wet as my children use the bath in there daily and I need to mop once in a while too. However we always use bathmats so the tiles are usually never sopping wet.
        I suspect some type of paint could work quite well despite that though, as there’s a spot of old acrylic paint on one tile that has never budged despite cleaning efforts.
        Thanks – Sophie

  4. Kavita says

    Your fireplace makeover looks beautiful! And I love your new screen-may I ask where you got it? Thanks!

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