Published at Tuesday, December 10th 2019. by Dylan in Kitchen Backsplashes.
When you've decided on the scope of your unique backsplash project, it's time to get creative and start thinking about materials. While it's certainly possible to create a unique and eye-catching backsplash design with traditional materials like ceramic tile or stone in styles like mosaic or subway, you may want to explore more out-of-the-box styles for your kitchen. For example, many homeowners have begun repurposing common materials for their backsplashes—things like bottle caps, coasters, used gift cards and even pennies can be used to create a truly unique and visually stunning backsplash in your kitchen. Obviously, any backsplash that you assemble on your own from these types of found materials will require a significant investment of DIY time, as well as some know-how when it comes to the required materials. But if you're contemplating an eye-catching design that incorporates an array of items like these, you can also find great resources online with step-by-step instructions on how to create the unique backsplash in your imagination.
One of the first decisions related to your kitchen backsplash design will be scope—just how much backsplash do you need? For some kitchens, especially smaller ones, a few tiles extending up from the countertops and ringing the room can be plenty; anything more extensive might run the risk of overwhelming the space. For larger kitchens, countertop-to-ceiling backsplashes aren't entirely uncommon, as grander executions like this can optimize the use of available space and create a dramatic effect or build on an existing theme.
Ask about wear and tear. How easily can you clean the tile, and what is the best way to seal it? Ceramic tile doesn't need this extra step, but natural tile does if you want to maintain its appearance. "If the tile is stainless steel, find out if abrasives will scratch it, and I would suggest getting a grout additive and sealing the grout itself so it stays fresh and clean for longer," Van Deusen says.
If your budget breaks through the ceramic tile ceiling, you may want to consider granite tile or other natural materials. Popular for kitchen countertops and floors, granite, travertine or even marble tile are often employed in backsplash design, providing an elegant and durable option and a high-end look. All of the kinds of natural stone tiles are available in a range of colors and textures, from slate-like matte finishes to rougher, pebbled designs. Color choices are nearly inexhaustible as well, and many granite retailers can find or even dye their products based on your needs if you don't see the shade you're looking for on site.
If you’re a wine lover through and through, why not try a backsplash made entirely of wine corks? If you happen to have a wine refrigerator or cabinet, you could try this backsplash in the area you store your wine. It’s a fun way to document and keep track of all of your wine adventures by saving and using your corks.
If you've decided a new or updated backsplash is just what your small kitchen needs, your first step will be to identify the materials you'll use for your backsplash. You'll have myriad choices, from traditional backsplash materials like ceramic tile and glass to more high-end materials like stainless steel and granite. Your material choice will likely have everything to do with two factors: the style you're shooting for via your kitchen design, and your budget. For anyone attempting to install even a small kitchen backsplash while maintaining a budget, high-end materials may be cost-prohibitive. On the other hand, if the design style you're trying to implement absolutely needs a granite backsplash despite a limited budget, there are plenty of synthetic materials you can consider that will approximate the look of just about any natural stone or other material.
Your first step toward installing an inexpensive backsplash is to define exactly how much backsplash your kitchen needs. First, you'll need to decide if you want the backsplash to cover the entire wall area above your countertops, or simply a portion thereof. Obviously, the more extensive your backsplash design, the more expensive it will be. So, if it's your intent to create an inexpensive backsplash, you may want to consider covering only a portion of the walls above your countertops. Many homeowners implement a design that covers 25% to 75% of the wall above the countertops. If you're trying to minimize the effect on your budget, you should choose the minimal level of coverage that will still provide adequate protection for the walls based on how much cooking you do and how close the wall is to the most active cooking area.
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