Thinking about adding (or changing) a backsplash in your kitchen? Today, there are plenty of choices for materials, colors, and options. Consider these important factors—before committing to your final design.
HOW MUCH BACKSPLASH DO YOU NEED?
Are we talking about 3 ft. behind the kitchen sink? Or will the backsplash wrap around to another wall (or go behind the fridge or the stove, for example)? Deciding on a length will help you determine a budget. Generally, the longer the backsplash, the higher the budget.
FULL VS. HALF BACKSPLASH?
Also, decide now if you want a full-height or half-height backsplash. Full-height backsplashes can extend all the way to the ceiling, while half-height backsplashes (say, up to the bottom window ledge) can save you money and time in materials. You can also try a smaller 4 in. height backsplash.
CONSIDER YOUR OVERALL KITCHEN STYLE.
Are you looking for a change to your kitchen? Or do you want to keep the style intact? Make sure the backsplash matches your kitchen style—unless you really want to make a statement.
WHAT WORKS BEST WITH YOUR COUNTERS?
If your countertops are dull or neutral, then a splashy, colorful backsplash will liven them up. But if your countertops (or sink) already boast a bold color, then you may want a more neutral tone (such as white or stainless steel) as a background.
DECIDE ON A BUDGET.
A new backsplash can cost anywhere from $10/sq. ft. to $250/sq. ft.—and up. Decide in advance what you can realistically fit into your budget—before choosing materials.
CHOOSE YOUR MATERIALS.
The options for backsplash materials are endless. Look at:
CHOOSE YOUR COLORS.
Forget the dull grey and taupe backsplashes of 20 years ago. Today, backsplash materials come in a wide variety of colors, including:
CHOOSE A PATTERN.
Once you’ve selected your materials and colors, you’re ready to choose a pattern. Preview a few online to see what you like best. For starters, check out subway, mosaic, brick, modern, chevron, traditional.
DIY OR PROFESSIONAL INSTALLER?
Now that you know what you want, consider whether you should hire a professional installer to do the job. If you’re handy with do-it-yourself projects, then you may be able to install it yourself, using kits found in the local hardware store—but be aware that this project may involve plumbing and electrical work.