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Red Brick Walls: A Timeless Design Choice

You may think an exposed red brick wall is an old-fashioned style, but you'd be wrong. In recent years, home builders, architects, and designers have embraced the timeless beauty of brick walls. With its texture,...

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You may think an exposed red brick wall is an old-fashioned style, but you'd be wrong. In recent years, home builders, architects, and designers have embraced the timeless beauty of brick walls. With its texture, character, and undeniable charm, red brick has become a popular choice for interior designs across a range of styles, from Ultra Modern to Industrial, Contemporary, Colonial, and even Traditional. Whether used for entire walls or as a simple backsplash, exposed red brick adds elegance and personality to a space dominated by tile and stone. And it's not just for fireplaces anymore!

Red Brick Walls Are a Growing Trend

Gone are the days when red brick walls were covered up and painted over. Interior red brick is no longer seen as old-fashioned; it is now being used in new homes of all styles. While most people still prefer to use brick in the living room or around a fireplace, this is mainly due to the misconception that bricks are difficult to clean and only suited for rustic settings. However, the idea that red brick won't work in a contemporary home is outdated and untrue.

In fact, an exposed brick wall often becomes the star of the room, providing the perfect backdrop to highlight architectural features and other elements. Red brick is versatile and can be used in any room of the house. While it is most popular in living rooms, we also see it in kitchens, dining rooms, bedrooms, offices, and even bathrooms. Bold and beautiful, exposed red brick used inside the home is a fantastic design choice that will stand the test of time.

Is Your Brick New or Existing?

Adding a red brick wall to your home is a great way to add another layer of detail and dimension. If you already have existing brick somewhere in your home, coordinating your colors and accessories becomes a little easier. You just have to match your other colors with the color and tone of the bricks. While this may limit your options, it also provides a starting point for your design.

If you're planning to build a red brick wall from scratch, you have more freedom to create the exact look you want. However, this also means you'll have to put in more work. In addition to choosing the brick, you'll have to select all your other colors and materials.

A pro tip is to start by picking up brick samples from your local masonry supplier. Seeing an actual sample in real light is always better than relying on pictures. Lighting conditions can significantly impact how a material looks in your home, so place samples where you want the brick for a day or two to observe how they appear at different times of the day. Don't make any final decisions or spend any money until you find just the right color combinations and red brick tone.

Four red brick samples all with a different texture and tone.

Red Brick Comes in a Variety of Colors

Did you know that red brick comes in a variety of colors? The term "red brick" is actually a general term that should be called "reddish brick." There's a wide variety of bricks that qualify as red brick, ranging from super red firehouse brick to more rustic reddish-brown varieties and even brick that appears almost purple. Even brick veneer, which is most commonly used inside the home, comes in a range of colors.

A pro tip when designing a room from scratch is to start with the brick and then choose your other colors and accessories. There are only a few dozen brick colors compared to thousands of paint colors, making it easier to start with the brick. Furthermore, a red brick wall serves as a focal point, so nailing the color is crucial.

If you have an existing brick wall, your life becomes a little easier as the decision is made for you.

Red Brick Walls: Classic Yet Versatile

Red brick walls have been a classic design choice for centuries. Many homes still feature a traditional red brick fireplace in the living room, often accompanied by built-ins or a decorative surround. However, brick is no longer confined to fireplaces. It is spreading into other rooms, including kitchens, dining rooms, offices, and even bathrooms. Regardless of the room, a red brick wall becomes a focal point that can be designed around.

Whether you want to accentuate your existing brickwork or create something completely different, red brick walls offer a variety of options to inspire you.

City apartment with red brick walls that are slightly white washed. Black frame windows with drywall and concrete floors give the room a modern feel.

Red Brick Walls: A Great City Look

A red brick wall, or even two, can add a lot of contrast to an otherwise plain wall. If you are used to walls covered with drywall and painted white, consider spicing up your interior design by adding brick. City apartments often feature more red brick because many buildings were constructed using bricks. In fact, many red brick walls in city photos are not just facades; they are the structural walls of the building. Older buildings were built to be strong, using multiple layers of concrete, block, brick, and steel to support multiple floors. While modern buildings lack the same charm, brick veneers offer a convenient way to achieve the look of a chic city apartment no matter where you live.

Red brick accent wall in a monochromatic gray living room.

Red Brick Accent Wall

A red brick accent wall is a great way to elevate your living room design. It adds detail and color to a monochromatic space, creating a wonderful contrast. Let the brick speak for itself by keeping the wall bare; resist the urge to cover it up with pictures or furniture. The brick itself is the real beauty, and anything else would only distract from it.

Beautiful living room featuring gray walls and red brick. White-washed wood flooring.

Red Brick Main Wall

In this example, we see the main wall painted red brick, with a gray accent wall. Both styles work great, showcasing the versatility of red brick as a design choice. Gray paint is currently trending and pairs perfectly with red brick. The white-washed wood floors and vintage-style area rug add texture and warmth to the room. The inclusion of plants and flowers tastefully enhances the overall design. Artwork with minimal or no framing is a smart choice, as it doesn't distract from the brick. A darker shade of gray complements the gray walls and other accents, creating a beautifully designed space.

Red brick wall in a modern home featuring an all-glass bedroom wall. Dark hardwood floors with white walls.

Red Brick Adds Contrast

Adding a red brick wall is a great way to introduce contrast to any room. The mid-tone red bricks contrast beautifully with white walls, black window frames, and furniture. Mixing rustic elements with a modern design style creates a unique and stunning interior. When choosing a brick, consider the effect you want the wall to have. Do you want a harmonious feel or something different? Adding contrast in terms of both tone and style ensures that your brick wall stands out.

Red brick accent wall next to a stone wood-burning fireplace surround with tan brick insert. Thick timber floating mantle.

Red Brick & Stone

Combining red brick with stone provides not only contrast in color but also texture and detail. Natural stone is irregularly shaped, while brick is uniform. The grout lines also differ, with stones having thicker grout lines compared to bricks. This contrast adds depth and interest to a red brick wall design and creates a unique visual impact.

Modern apartment with a red brick feature wall, exposed black steel, wood cabinetry and furniture with concrete floors.

Red Brick Walls Are Modern

Contrary to popular belief, red brick walls are not limited to traditional or old-fashioned styles. They are widely used in modern, urban, industrial, and contemporary homes. The combination of old red brick and sleek, clean finishes results in a modern look that is anything but outdated. The example above showcases a beautiful city apartment with an existing red brick feature wall, complete with exposed steel beams and concrete slab floors. The incorporation of real wood and glass, along with various textures and materials, contributes to a warm and modern design. Red brick adds character to the space and complements the overall aesthetic.

Red brick kitchen wall with dark wood flat-faced cabinets and cream-colored stone countertops.

Red Brick Kitchen Wall

Often overlooked in favor of more common finishes like tile or stone, a red brick wall looks just as fantastic in the kitchen as it does in the living room. The example above features a modern kitchen with dark wood flat-faced cabinets, cream stone countertops, and a solid slab backsplash. The black-framed windows perfectly complement the brick, creating a modern feel. No matter what style kitchen you have, including red brick in the design is a great idea, as it adds color, texture, and contrast.

Modern kitchen featuring gray flat-faced cabinetry with no hardware, white countertops, and a red brick wall.

Modern Kitchen With Red Brick

Another example of a modern kitchen with a red brick wall showcases gray flat-faced cabinetry without hardware, white countertops, and a red brick wall. The white-washed wood floors provide a unique touch, while the minimalistic design allows the brick to be the focal point. This kitchen is a perfect example of how gray pairs well with red brick and, when combined with other natural materials, creates a harmonious design. Running the wall bricks behind appliances and cabinetry ensures a clean look and an authentic brick wall appearance.

Open floor plan living room, kitchen, and dining area with matching red brick wall and fireplace.

Open Floor Plan With Red Brick

For open floor plans with a red brick fireplace, incorporating a brick accent wall is a great idea. It brings the rooms together, creating a sense of connection throughout the space. By using matching red brick for both the fireplace surround and the dining room wall, the design achieves a cohesive look. Extending the trend to other rooms, like a bathroom, office, or dining room, adds a touch of consistency. Connecting different spaces with a common thread elevates the overall design.

Beautiful contemporary kitchen design with cathedral ceilings, exposed wood beams, real wood flat-faced cabinets, and red brick walls.

Red Brick Walls Are Beautiful

Ultimately, we all want our homes to be beautiful. The photo above showcases a stunning contemporary kitchen design that pairs red brick walls with exposed wood beams, real wood flat-faced cabinets, and an open concept. The combination of these elements accentuates the beauty of the brick. The design makes excellent use of contrast and texture, resulting in a visually striking kitchen. The lesson here is to choose elements that accentuate one another, allowing each element to shine.

Red brick wall and fireplace surround painted white in a sunroom with vaulted ceilings.

Painted Red Brick Walls

If you have existing red brick walls or a fireplace that you're not fond of, painting the brick is an option to consider. While it's a daring choice that shouldn't be taken lightly, it can transform the look of a room. Painting the brick white provides an opaque, all-white wall with a brick texture. This look has gained popularity in recent years, and some homeowners are even building red brick homes and then painting them. German Schmear is another option where a white glazing or wash is used, allowing some of the red to show through. The design varies based on the desired outcome, with some German Schmear jobs featuring more or less red.

Conclusion: Red Brick Wall – Is It Right For You?

Beautiful kitchen with taupe colored cabinets, wood butcher block countertops, and a red brick backsplash wall.

Adding a red brick wall to your home is a versatile design choice that adds both character and warmth. Whether you want to recreate a rustic feel or achieve a modern look, red brick walls offer endless possibilities to suit your style. From accent walls to entire rooms, the beauty of red brick is undeniable. Its timeless appeal and wide range of colors make it a fantastic option for any home.

Consider the existing colors and materials in your home when choosing a red brick tone and style. Whether you want to create contrast or harmony, red brick walls can enhance any space, from kitchens and living rooms to wine cellars and sunrooms.

If you have any questions or comments, feel free to reach out to us. We'd love to hear from you and help you make the right decision regarding your red brick wall.