Strictly speaking, a kitchen backsplash is optional. However, it does help protect the walls above the counters and behind the stove from splashes and stains. It can also add an element of style. That’s why you should consider various factors when choosing backsplash tile for your kitchen. Here are some tips to help you make an informed decision.
Consider the Style of Your Kitchen
Ideally, you should choose a backsplash that complements the overall style of your kitchen. For example, subway tiles work well in both modern and traditional kitchens, while mosaic or patterned tiles might suit a more eclectic style. Glass tile lends a more modern feel. The backsplash design should also tie in with your countertop and cabinets to create a cohesive look.
Pay Attention to Tile Size
When choosing backsplash tile for your kitchen, pay attention to the size of the tile. It can impact the visual perception of your kitchen. For example, large tiles can make a small kitchen feel more expansive. On the other hand, smaller tiles or mosaics can create an overly ornate pattern and make the space look busy and cluttered. Try to find the balance for the space you have to work with.
Experiment with Colour, Shapes, and Patterns
White subway tile is a safe and easy choice. In fact, its timelessness might be perfect for your space or an excellent choice for a rental unit. However, choosing backsplash tile for your kitchen provides an opportunity to add a unique design element. You could match the tile to the existing colour scheme or use the backsplash as a focal point by installing tiles with a contrasting colour.
Another option is to experiment with tile shapes and patterns. Herringbone, chevron, or arabesque patterns can add visual interest to your kitchen while maintaining a neutral colour scheme. However, please be careful because distinctive patterns can overtake the entire look of the space or become dated quickly. These bevelled tiles are my new favourite. We found them for a client who has a condo in a former schoolhouse. I think the pencil line around the bevelled edge is just perfect!
Think About Maintenance
Kitchens can be messy. It’s one of the reasons people install a backsplash in the first place. When choosing backsplash tiles for your kitchen, consider how easy they are to clean. Smooth, glossy tiles are generally easier to wipe down than textured or matte finishes. Also, darker grout can be less susceptible to discolouring, whereas lighter-coloured grout may show grease spots or tomato sauce stains.
In the image below, you can see how my client found the best balance for their home. Instead of choosing tile, they chose this gorgeous tempered glass backsplash. It gives the kitchen a streamlined look and adds a bright pop of colour to the space while being extremely easy to clean.
Bring Samples Home Before Finalizing Your Choice
When shopping for tile, bring samples of your countertop and cabinet door finishes with you to narrow down your choices. However, before making a final decision, bring home the samples of your preferred tiles. Look at them under different lighting conditions, during the day and at night. If you’re shopping at a big box store, you might have to buy a few tiles, but a design showroom will usually lend you a sample board. If you find it difficult to choose tiles from the board they give you, sometimes your sales rep can request individual tiles from their supplier.
Keep Your Budget in Mind
Finally, determine how much you can spend on your project so you don’t fall in love with a fabulous tile that doesn’t fit your budget. There are various tile materials with a wide range of prices. Generally, ceramic and porcelain tiles are more budget-friendly, while natural stone and glass tiles can be more expensive. The good news is that the backsplash area is typically not a huge space, so splurging a little on some beautiful tile may fit within your budget.
Choosing backsplash tile for your kitchen that enhances the aesthetic of your kitchen and suits your lifestyle can be a challenge – and once your backsplash tile is installed, it’s not easy to remove and replace if you change your mind. That’s why you need to take your time and explore the options. And feel free to seek advice from a design professional. I’d be happy to help work within your budget to bring joy and style to your home. Contact me today to learn more.