If installing a traditional tile backsplash feels a little out of your DIY league, putting up one made from a single sheet of solid surface material may just be your saving grace. Shaping, cutting, and gluing up this inexpensive stock material-available from companies such as Swanstone, which makes the beadboard backsplash shown here, in a variety of colors and patterns-is a weekend project most amateurs can conquer with confidence. Check out our Step-by-Step breakdown in How to Install a Solid-Surface Backsplash.
Use graphic encaustic cement floor tiles, such as these Moroccan imports, on the wall. The thick handmade squares fit together like puzzle pieces to form colorful medallions. Similar to shown: 8-by-8-inch tiles in the Meilla pattern, $7.25 each; villalagoontile.com
Stacked subway tile
Lining up tiles horizontally in parallel columns creates a polished, contemporary look. Similar to shown: Rittenhouse Square tile in Matte Black, $1.70 per square