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 ...and thanks for stopping by. I'm Claire Douglas,  DIY and home interiors writer specialising in money-saving and creative home interior projects. I've spent years developing my 'bespoke on a budget' approach to DIY and home interiors and I love sharing all my tips and tricks in tutorials and posts here on my blog, in articles I write for some of the leading titles, in the press, on Instagram, Tiktok and my online course

Brick slips: how to get the look of real bricks for less

Today's whistlestop tour of interior inspiration is focused on brick slips.

Let's face it: exposed brick walls are a dream for many, but due to the potentially hefty price tag, they often don't become a realisation. However, there are ways to achieve this classic look on a budget with the help of brick skips (aka brick veneers, thin bricks or thin brick slips). 

As well as looking at how and where you can use brick slips on your interior walls, we'll look at the benefits and get lots of inspiration from successful projects. 

Why Brick Slips? The benefits

We touched on this above with the potential for cost savings, but you might be wondering why choose brick slips in the first place? Well, apart from the obvious aesthetic appeal, brick slips bring so many other benefits to your interiors; let's take a look...

brick slips on kitchen backsplash
Image credit: The Brick Tile Company

1. Easy to clean

Brick slips are a low-maintenance option when it comes to feature walls because they require little in the way of aftercare making them the perfect finish if you want all the impact of an authentic brick finish without any hassle. Unless you install your brick slips in a place where they could get greasy or dirty (like behind a kitchen hob or worktop), they require very little cleaning, just a dust and a wipe. For greasy locations, seal the brick slips for easy cleaning. 

2. Long lasting

Although brick slips aren't solid bricks, they are still very hardwearing and if installed properly, will stay in place for decades. Popular with modern renovation projects, they offer a way to create a traditional brick wall appearance that will last as long as a 'proper' brick wall. 

brick slips on wall in living room
Image credit: The Brick Tile Company

3. Brick slips suit a variety of interior styles

Love the industrial look? Brick slips are your ticket to achieving that coveted warehouse-inspired aesthetic. Done correctly, you can create a blend of rough and refined with the heavy texture finish of traditional brickwork paired with sleek furnishings and accessories. Traditional brick slips can also work well to create a farmhouse / country cottage feel and modern brick slips can work well in a modern transitional style home. 

4. Make a big impact even in small spaces

Living in a cozy apartment? Fear not! Brick slips can be your secret weapon to make small spaces appear larger. Strategically placed brick accents can open up your rooms and create an illusion of grandeur and architecture that belies the bijou truth. Often placed on chimney breasts to create a striking focal point for the room. 

brick slips being DIYed
Image credit: The Brick Tile Company

5. A dream to DIY

As a keen DIYer, I'm always looking for exciting projects to transform rooms on a budget and brick slips are an easy way to do this. Luckily, the DIY installer has a huge brick slip range to choose from as well as many helpful guides on YouTube and the like. 

6. Versatile

Walls are just the beginning. There are plenty of less conventional applications for brick slips, from chic kitchen backsplashes to statement furniture pieces. The possibilities are as limitless as your imagination - a principle I swear by. Why not pick from the wide range of brick slips to create a custom product that oozes uniqueness and character? 

Tips for DIY installation of brick slips

brick slips
Image credit: The Brick Tile Company

1. Planning & measuring

  • Measure the wall accurately to determine the number of square metres and total brick slips needed.

  • Plan the layout, ensuring that the slips are evenly distributed and corners and edges are accounted for.

  • Ensure you have all the tools and raw materials that you'll need to hand.  

2. Surface prep

  • Ensure the wall is clean, dry, and smooth before starting. Remove any existing wallpaper, loose paint, or debris.

  • If the wall is uneven, consider using a thin layer of plaster or mortar to create a level surface as you want the final finish to be akin to a real brick wall. 

3. Applying adhesive

  • Use a notched trowel to apply an even layer of adhesive to the wall. The notches help create a uniform layer.

  • Work in small sections to ensure the adhesive doesn't dry out before placing the brick slips.

brick slips being installed
Image credit: The Brick Tile Company

4. Positioning

  • Press each brick slip firmly into the adhesive, using a slight twisting motion to ensure good contact.

  • Maintain even spacing between the slips for a professional look.

5. Cutting brick slips

  • Use a wet saw or an angle grinder with a diamond blade to cut brick slips to fit corners or edges.

  • Wear appropriate safety gear, including safety glasses and gloves

6. Check alignment and use a level

  • Periodically use a level to ensure the brick slips are straight and aligned.

  • Make adjustments as needed before the adhesive sets.

Are brick slips a good way to elevate your interiors?

brick slips in kitchen on the back wall
Image credit: The Brick Tile Company

As interior designers will tell you, in a world where design trends come and go, brick slips stand the test of time. I always advise against blindly following home interior trends and only getting involved if it's a style that really speaks to you, so rather than worry about what's trendy, the best approach is to create a timeless interior packed full of things you adore and that spark joy. As a fan of all things texture, the beauty of rough and imperfect brick cladding really appeals. In conclusion, brick slips are a great idea to elevate your interiors in 2024.

How much do brick slips cost?

Brick slips vary in cost depending on their age, quality and history eg whether they are reclaimed or not. On average brick slips cost between £20-£65 per metre-squared. If you are completing a small DIY project and don't need hundreds and hundreds of tiles, you might be lucky looking on Facebook Marketplace and eBay for leftovers that people are selling.

Are brick slips and brick tiles the same thing?

Some people will refer to brick slips as brick tiles, so the words are often used interchangeably, however, you can also buy tiles that have a faux brick effect (similar to a brick-effect wallpaper) so you'll need to understand a few more details about the specific scenario before deciding which type the person is referring to when they talk about brick tiles.

Related blog posts

I've been on a roll with tile-related blog posts of late! First, there was the perfect pink tiles round-up, followed by the DIY tutorial showing how to install DIY stick-on floor tiles in a bathroom. Then I shared an inspo-filled post about how to jump on the green tiles trend. Last winter, I added a post about roof tile vents and how to use them to beat condensation. For those looking to complete a bathroom revamp I shared a product review for a fantastic grout reviver. Most recently, I wrote about the best kitchen tile stickers for those not quite ready to commit to actual tiles. Hopefully you'll find some useful info in there somewhere!


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