Emma Sleep

Internal brick wall before and after: 80s brown to on-trend grey

Supported by Monsta Shop

If you follow along on Instagram and watch my stories, you’d know we’re kicking off a renovation series at Bonnie’s new home. Bonnie is one of the main ladies behind the scenes of Style Curator, so we’re excited to help her turn her original ’80s townhouse into a modern, light and airy home.

First on the list of jobs to tackle was painting her internal brick wall. It’s the first thing you see as you enter — running from the kitchen through the dining to outdoors — and the brown brick was making the space feel small, dark and dated.

Check out this quick video to see the before and after transformation or keep reading for all the details.

Related article: Bonnie’s kitchen reveal: From poky and brown to open and airy!
Related article: Bonnie’s bathroom renovation before and after: The reveal of her new bathroom

Transforming the dated brown brick wall

We love the texture of the brick and didn’t want to lose that so we decided to try one of the new Monsta colour wash paints on this wall. Colour washes are different to traditional paints in that they don’t have a heavy, opaque base. Essentially they just tint what you’re painting without masking any of the beautiful brick texture.

The ‘Grey Monsta Colour Wash’ paint we used has completely transformed this wall — turning it from ’80s drab into modern and fab!

We’ve achieved a beautiful mid-dark grey colour that’s so fitting with the new direction we’re going to take Bonnie’s townhouse.

Stay tuned to see how we transform this space even more as a new kitchen and flooring will be installed over the coming months.

Tips when painting bricks:

  • Prep brick walls for painting by using a scrubbing brush and sugar soap in warm water. The walls had so much debris and we discovered blu tack and other things that we removed
  • Use painter’s tape and drop sheets to protect adjoining walls and the floor
  • Use a paintbrush rather than a roller or spray gun. It might take a little longer to apply but you’ll get a better, more consistent finish
  • Purchase extra paint. We used twice the recommended paint quantity to paint the bricks. Depending on the type of brick you’re painting (and whether or not it’s been painted before), you may need up to twice the recommended paint quantity. Bonnie’s bricks are incredibly textured and the concrete mortar was particularly porous. We used 8L of wash paint to apply two coats to this wall of around 24m2.

If you’d like to try the Monsta colour wash paints — there are 8 colours to choose from — don’t forget to use code word ‘Monstaweekend’ at checkout to score $20 off! See the colour range on the Monsta website here.

More reno ideas

Gina Beschorner Style Curator

Welcome to Style Curator, your destination for daily interiors inspiration, styling tips, reno advice, home tours and DIY projects!

We're on a mission to help you create a home you love. And with plenty of tips and tricks, tutorials and other home inspo, we give you all the tools to achieve it!

I’m Gina, Founder and Interior Designer, and you can read more about Style Curator here.


Get the best of the blog to your inbox each week PLUS instant access to our free downloads!

    We respect your privacy. Unsubscribe at any time.
    Interior style quiz

    Shop our fave online stores

    Aura home
    Koala Eco

    As seen in

    Style Curator in the media



    1. Looks amazing! Planing on using the Monsta ‘Dark Grey’ on our yellow bricks. When painting some samples on the wall, one coat is of course not enough but two coats of the wash looks really quite dark compared to Bonnie’s wall. Perhaps I painted too heavily? Is there a particular brush/technique that you used to achieve such a quality finish?

      • Hmmm good questions Adam. We used the paint quite sparingly to avoid drips so perhaps that contributed to the lighter finish. You could also do one coat in the light grey wash? But I’d test that on a small discrete section first to check you like the effect. I’d love to see photos of your painted wall 🙂

    2. Love this look! We have a similar unit to Bonnie’s with an 80’s orange brick wall that we’d really like to do something with and the colour wash looks perfect. From the photos it looks like some of the brown of the bricks is still showing through the wash — do you think a 3rd coat would fix that, or would we be better off just painting with regular paint?

      • Hi Simon, in the photos you do still see some brown but not in person so that’s why Bonnie stopped at 2 coats. Behind her kitchen splashback she did 3 coats though (as there was son glue stuck to the bricks we had to cover) and in photos that looks perfect. I’ll publish her kitchen tomorrow so you can see ?

    3. I always believed every material can be used and reused, it’s just important to find a new, creative way to do that. Painting brick walls is a great way to loose the orange but keep the texture. And isn’t grey the perfect color for interior walls?

      • Thanks lovelies! We’re so happy with how this wall has turned out. Very soon the new kitchen and flooring will be going in too and we can’t wait to reveal more of the reno soon 🙂


    Please enter your comment!
    Please enter your name here