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Should I paint my exposed-brick walls? Add to ...

The question

Where do you stand on exposed-brick interior walls? I can’t decide whether or not to paint them.

The answer

Your question takes me back to my student days, when I was living in a narrow Victorian house with a peeling, crumbling, dusty brick wall separating us from the person next door. There was no acoustic barrier, so the sounds of conversations flowed unabated between us and our neighbour (fire probably would have spread just as easily). The slightest rub against the brick would leave you scraped and dirty. Clothing didn’t stand a chance. As a result, I am not fond of exposed brick.

I prefer smooth walls or, if texture is called for, wallpaper. For me, painting solves the dust issue, but doesn’t address the fact that brick typically has missing pieces and uneven grout lines (which drive me insane). And to hang anything on that wall, you would need special plugs that are not easy to install. So forget paint. Put up studs, insulation and drywall and cover up that brick. And remember that, if you are mounting a flat-screen TV, you can recess it into the wall and put a power supply in place. Just say no to exposed brick.

 Dee Dee Taylor Eustace is an architect and interior designer. Follow her on Twitter: @ddtaylordd. Have a design dilemma? E-mail style@globeandmail.com.

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