An inexpensive and effective way to upgrade a kitchen or bathroom is to install a creative backsplash design. Backsplashes are both utilitarian and stylish. Generally between 18 and 20-inches tall, a backsplash protects walls from being stained by airborne grease and food in a kitchen, and from toothpaste and cleaning chemicals in a bathroom. Here are five creative ideas for backsplashes that are unique enough to add some style to any kitchen or bathroom.
1. Mosaic Tiles
Regular clay tile is the most popular material used for making a backsplash. Made from ceramic or porcelain clay, tile can be turned or cut to create different patterns and shapes in a backsplash design. Unfortunately, creating these shapes can require quite a bit of time and skill. Mosaic tiles are tiles cut into elaborate patterns and set onto a mesh sheet. These mesh sheets allow the intricately cut tiles to be mounted as one piece saving the person laying the tile the time it would take to set and space each one individually. Mosaic tiles provide people who are less skilled at cutting tile with complex, detailed tile patterns for their backsplashes with minimal effort.
2. 3-D Collages
The most unique type of backsplash is the 3D collage. These backsplashes are made of clear resin and allow the home owner to embed photographs and memorabilia. The effect is achieved by creating a plywood template of the area to be covered. This plywood is then surrounded by wood to make a mold. The resin is poured into this mold and the objects for the collage are sunk into the substance.
3. Stainless Steel Tiles
Stainless steel tile is a fast growing trend. These tiles give bathrooms and kitchens a sleek modern look, but are usually quite expensive. Another downside of stainless steel tile is that it shows splatter marks left by toothpaste and oil. By foregoing the polished mirrored type of a steel tile and opting for a brushed metal finish, you can reduce the blatancy of these types of spots. By using steel tiles sparingly as accent pieces in a backsplash, rather than constructing the entire backsplash from them, you can bring reduce the cost of the project.
4. Pressed Tin Tiles
Unlike stainless steel tiles, tin tiles can be presses into shapes or symbols relatively cheaply. These pressed tiles are great to use as accent pieces or for creating an entire backsplash.
5. Mirrored Tiles
Mirrored tiles, such as stainless steel tiles, will show a fair amount of spotting when used in backsplash applications. It is important to note that these tiles are not just small mirrors; they are thermo-foil bonded to the surface to give them a mirror-like finish. The thermo-foil is a surprisingly strong material that resists cracking and chipping much better than an ordinary mirror.