When it comes to designing a kitchen, a backsplash is one area where you can have some fun. While the cabinets tend to be a practical choice and the countertops a question of utility, a backsplash finishes off a kitchen's look. Here's what you might think about before adding wow to your walls. With lots of tile and backsplash options, consider which material will fit your needs. Ask yourself what is more important in your space, form or function?
Ceramic and Porcelain
Ceramic and porcelain tiles are impervious to stains, you don't have to worry about a pot of spaghetti sauce boiling over. A ceramic or porcelain tile can also be very cost effective as well. Below is a kitchenette we designed with a fun 4x12 ceramic tile.
Glass tile is also a safe choice because upkeep is easy, a quick wipe with a sponge and your backsplash is back to new. Glass tile is not your most expensive choice, but it is not as budget friendly as most ceramic tiles.
Natural stone backsplashes are a more risky choice. Even though they are beautiful they are a porous material that can be hard to clean. Honed natural stone such as limestone and marble can spot with grease or acidic foods. Use these materials with caution or in areas that don't get a lot of everyday use. This is a mother-in-law kitchen we used a carerra marble as the backsplash. This was a good application because it is not a full service kitchen that is used daily.
If you are a passionate home cook, be sure to steer clear of tiles with a lot of texture, such as a stacked stone or a mosaic with a lot of grout. Grease can find nooks and crannies and you could find yourself cleaning for hours.
So... What's in Style?
One of our go-to patterns is a simple subway pattern. Subway tile is very in right now, and we don’t see it as a trend that will fade away anytime soon. This simple classic pattern is here to stay, so you don’t have to be afraid that the look will date your kitchen.
Some great ways to take this look to the next level, are by alternating the pattern. Try an inset pattern over the stove-top. You can turn the tiles on their side, try a chevron design, or inset a completely different tile for a pop of color above a sink or as a border. Homeowners with more contemporary taste might position the tiles vertically rather than horizontally. The kitchen below we wanted to do a very simple and subtle design over the stove. We chose to use the same subway tiles but in a herringbone pattern rather than the typical brick pattern.
A backsplash is a great opportunity to be creative, don’t be afraid to think outside the box. The best design decisions are the ones based on your taste and what works best for your family. If you love the outcome then that’s all that matters.