Bold, Beautiful Backsplashes
Choosing a backsplash may be one of the last decisions a homeowner makes when building or renovating a kitchen, but it can also be the most transformative. When designing a backsplash there is an opportunity to play with color, texture, and pattern. “The goal when choosing a backsplash is that it should add to a room, not just disappear,” says Brett Cooper, showroom manager at Portico Fine Tile & Design. “A common mistake people make is going in with a fear-based approach—not wanting tile to detract from beautiful counters and cabinets.” He suggests that a backsplash be different from yet complement other materials.
Stone Mosaic from the Opus Anticato Collection | Harlequin Mosaic with Rimini Border | walkerzanger.com
A custom backsplash can rise to the level of art. While many people think of backsplashes behind the stove, Cooper suggests thinking about your whole kitchen and the flow of the tile. “You don’t want it to be piecemeal. Sometimes it makes the most sense to tile around the hood and up to the ceiling, and think about edging details as a way to add a nice finishing touch.” Grout is also part of your design. A contrasting grout can be striking, though most often people choose a complementary color. Once your backsplash is installed and sealed, to keep it looking its best, reseal every year, especially in areas of heavy use.
Azure Custom Flower Glass Mosaic | Designer: Caroline Beaupere | Photographer: Matthew Arnold | annsacks.com
A backsplash can be a great marriage of fashion and function, and to achieve the right look for your space, Cooper says, “Bring as many pieces of the puzzle in when choosing your backsplash. Samples of countertops, cabinets, and even fabric swatches from window treatments and upholstery will help with your decision.” It is also important to bring tile samples home so that you can look at them in your space, checking for how the changing light will affect the material. “The trend in homes is open spaces, so it’s important to consider the backsplash as part of the larger space and how it can tie rooms together.”
Climbing Vine Jewel Glass Mosaic In Aquamarine (Leaves) and Quartz (Vines) | Designer: Sara Baldwin | newravenna.com
If your new home or old kitchen needs a makeover, adding a backsplash can be a relatively inexpensive way to transform the look of your space. To create maximum bang for your buck, choose a confined area for something special. “Behind the stove is the perfect place to use a more expensive material and to get ambitious with elaborate designs,” Cooper says.
Kingston Lacy Hand-Cut Natural Stone Mosaic In Calcatta Tia and Bardiglio | Design courtesy of Rogers & Goffigon | Photo: Model Design | newravenna.com