Backsplash design ideas
If you want to refresh your kitchen but can't afford a full-scale remodel, a smart place to start is with tiling a backsplash, which only takes a weekend. You can switch out a backsplash without moving cabinetry or appliances, and the sky's the limit in terms of material choices, colors, and patterns. If your kitchen currently only has bare walls, you'll also delight in the easy clean-up a smart backsplash provides. As you start dreaming up your design, get inspired by a few of our favorite backsplashes from thisoldhouse.com.
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Repurposed Summer-Front Backsplash
"We bought this 'summer front' at a farm auction for $110," says Kentucky homeowner Renay Davis, who had been looking at pricey basket-weave tile to protect the wall behind her cooktop. This Victorian-era cast-iron antique, once used to cover a fireplace during the off-season, is now a fancy focal point that saved the Davises more than $800 in materials. The Davises coated the piece with tile sealer to make it easy to clean, then mounted it between the wall studs.
The Ever-Popular Glass Tile Mosaic
Glass tile mosaic backsplash
In this $967 kitchen redo the biggest splurge was the colorful mosaic tile (Casa Italia, Green Mix Mosaic Glass from Floor and Decor Outlets of America), but the green-and-white glass-tile backsplash brought in a finishing touch of color. Says the homeowner, "Now, when I walk in and see the kitchen, it makes me smile." They recommend renting a small wet saw for about $59 for an easy installation. (See more of this remodel, linked above).
Ceramic Subway-Tile Backsplash
Subway tile has been a staple of kitchen and bath design for decades. There's a (huge!) range of available styles that you can explore to learn which colors and patterns suit your taste. In the design shown, zigzag angles accentuate the material, turning a simple white-tile backsplash into a handsome focal point.
Select a backsplash grout
You can opt for colored subway tiles in a more traditional pattern, too. But give some consideration to grout as well. Shown here, neutral lines of off-white grout harmonize with wood counters and shelves. Check out All About Ceramic Subway Tile if you're considering this material.
Hand-Painted Tile Mural
Stove alcove backsplash
The kitchen remodel of this 1930s Spanish-Revival house included a stove alcove, set off with a cascading arch and hand-painted tile mural. The homeowner from this remodel advised, "Stay flexible. We originally planned a tiled floor but decided to keep the original fir when it was uncovered under layers of linoleum. The tile 'rug' we designed became our stove backsplash."
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Backsplash design ideas