Kitchen Backsplash 101

September 18, 2015 | Category: Design & Renovations Tags:

If you’re looking for a way to spruce up your kitchen without a major overhaul a new backsplash could be part of the answer. When combined with a new countertop, painted cabinets, and new hardware, you can give your kitchen a whole new look for a fraction of the cost of a renovation.

Backsplashes are fairly easy and inexpensive to install so if you’re up for a DIY project give it a try.

Glass Backsplash

Which Comes First – The Counter or the Backsplash?

Different designers will tell you different things, and the truth is that there’s no right answer. From a design perspective, some people like to make the backsplash the focal point and they play around with color and pattern. But if you want my personal opinion, I believe that to get the most value out of your space the countertop should come first and be the focal point, and the backsplash should just be there to support it.


Choosing a Backsplash – Materials

Tile comes in a ton of materials from traditional ceramic and porcelain, to marble, slate, glass, pressed tin, and more. Here’s what I recommend:


Backsplash Patterns

One of the great things about tile backsplashes is that you can design them in a number of different ways (seriously, the options are literally endless). One of my favorite things to do is take a really simple tile, such as a white subway tile, and arrange it in an interesting pattern. It’s a great way to add a subtle design detail while keeping things simple.

There are hundreds of different patterns you can use but I generally stick to the following backsplash patterns.

Backsplash Patterns


Grout is often an afterthought for many people, but it’s an important part of any backsplash. Not only does it lock in the tiles and give your backsplash a finished look, it plays an important design role. A dark grout used with white tiles creates a striking effect, as can a light grout with dark tiles. Consider all the options before making a final decision.

Grout Lines

Backsplash Tips

The most important thing to remember when it comes to backsplash ROI (return on investment) is to keep it fairly simple. Your backsplash shouldn’t fight your countertop for attention but should compliment it. Keep it simple, elegant and classic.


All photos courtesy of Skit Inc.

Related Posts