choosing brick color

tonib40February 4, 2007

Hi Everyone, I was wondering if I could see some pictures of some brick houses so I can choose a good color for a two-story 4000sq ft house. Went to the brick place Friday and was overwhelmed by all the choices. I would like to see some lighter colors like gray or tan or if you know of a color that would be ok on that size of area. Thanks

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I went to see the mason who was to do my job. He was at a job site and those brick were exactly what I wanted. So that is how our choice was made. No regrets at all.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2007 at 9:38AM
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You could try Go to products and you can narrow your search. After you pull up different types of brick and different mortar that conform to your search, on the right hand side you can see the brick you've chosen on a house (you will somewhat need to use your imagination because it is computer generated) but what I found helpful was when I found in that right hand portion of the page something that said "gallery". That was actual pictures of the chosen brick on one or two or three houses. Not all of the brick you choose has gallery pics, but it is a website that is worth playing around on. There also was a site I used a while back,, for potomac valley brick, but I can't get that to come up for some reason. They also had an area where you could try different bricks along with trim and roof and mortar colors. Good luck with this. I found the brick decision extremely difficult. In the end we went with stone and hardiplank shakes!


    Bookmark   February 4, 2007 at 9:39AM
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Keep this in mind. Mortar color can DRASTICALLY change the way a particular brick looks. Your brick dealer should tell you this. The best thing you can do is drive around and actually look at brick choices on an actual house. It's difficult to get an idea of how a particular brick will look looking at only pictures or an individual brick.


    Bookmark   February 4, 2007 at 3:10PM
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Try to select your brick early. We built a house and they weren't producing the brick at the moment--I had to select another, then another, and finally settled on one that was available; I certainly didn't want to hold up construction waiting on brick when they couldn't even give me a date of when it would be available.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2007 at 8:14AM
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Can only emphasize the importance of the above posts. Perhaps one good approach is to visit brick suppliers and get some ideas from sample boards; but then it is imperative to get a list of homes built with that brick as well as the mortar used. As jamesrgeib mentioned, the mortar color (and joint type) will dramatically impact the appearance. Indeed, if one is going for a custom look, even the sand mixed with the mortar can have a significant bearing on the final look.

If at all possible, find out whether you can buy a few dozen bricks and ask your mason to build a sample wall (and let the mortar dry). You may wish to view a few options on mortar joint on the sample wall as well.

Unless one is going with some very classical and standard brick/mortar combinations, do not skimp on this step.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2007 at 8:59PM
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We just chose our brick after spending hours on the major manufacturers' websites and visiting many different homes with specific brick colors that we had narrowed from the samples at the brick showroom. We finally decided to ride through subdivisions with recent construction and choose houses that we like because brick mortar and brick joint detailing matter to the overall look. We found the perfect house and asked the homeowner exactly the mortar color and technique used for the joints, as well as the brick color used. He even gave us a hint about making sure the mason broke all of the bundles of brick and pulled from them evenly to ensure an even color tone. Wow, we never thought of that!! Good luck!

    Bookmark   February 6, 2007 at 10:47AM
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I have tlearned to use a darker warmer mortar than you initially think looks good with the brick. That will show off the natural color of the brick instead of the joints.

    Bookmark   February 6, 2007 at 11:40AM
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Bridget Helm

Try triangle brick. I think their website is Their tumbled estate series is really nice and has some lighter colors. I LOVE sanibel. Also, oyster bay is an interesting white brick. I think that cape cod was nice too. They show an entire house done in each brick on their website. The homes are large and are all brick so you get a good idea. I saw the bricks in person as well. They look the same in person and online.
Good luck!

    Bookmark   February 7, 2007 at 10:56AM
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Try Boral Bricks' website. I think the tool is BoralVision and you can choose from about 15 styles of homes and select from a array of bricks/mortar/roof and trim colors. This will give you and idea but you must go see it in person. We were able to almost exactly reproduce our look with the tool but only after selecting a very dark brown (almost black) mortar when we are actually using Buff (a medium brown). It did give us the look wanted and we then spent weeks driving around looking at houses to make the final selection. A lot of the brick companies keep locations of houses by brick and mortar style/color. So if you tell them you want to see a certain finished brick application, they can give several addresses and you can drive by and look at them.

In the end we got very lucky and found a house very similar in style to ours with exactly the look we wanted. So that made it easy. What was even easier was that our builder was the builder of the house we liked as well.

I agree with mightyanvil. The Boral website has a section where they show the effect of different color mortar. They showed our brick with the mortar we selected and a light grey/ivory. The bricks did not even look the same. It went from a warm old style look to a somewhat commercial/warehouse look.

    Bookmark   February 10, 2007 at 3:16PM
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We looked at the website,, and the Brick Institute of America ( once we had made a decision on the brick color.
We asked the Brick supplier for a listing of homes in my AREA that had this same brick choice.

They gave us a listing of about 15 homes in my state (all within 40 miles of my home;) that had been bricked in the past 5 years. We did re-con work to make sure the brick we were using would look right with both a 1 story home and with arch work. We visited several large housing developments that had full brick exteriors to get ideas and perspectives on what we might envision for our home.

After that we also chose a BrickMason that was capable & had demonstrable work of laying corners doing arches, quoins, watertable and capstones. Make sure that this person is licensed if you are doing speciality work !!!

It may cost more initially but you don't want your work falling down 10-20 years from now. Masonry takes the proper foundation, support and water drainage to last a long time. We asked this person for a portfolio of their work and references. We are hapy now that we spent the extra time to check these things out.

    Bookmark   July 4, 2007 at 12:00PM
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