BY ATHENA McKENZIE
If you’re about to embark on a kitchen reno, why not add a personal touch and opt for a statement backsplash?
While your backsplash will play a largely decorative role, it also needs to protect your walls from splatters and spills caused by food preparation. It should be easy to clean, as well as adding visual interest. If you’re into colour and pattern, decide whether your counter or the backsplash will be the focal point — you don’t want different elements vying for attention.
All the way to the top
Ceiling-height backsplashes can give classic tile a fresh and modern look. They are also a great way to call attention to an area of your kitchen, create a focal wall or highlight a large patterned tile.
Sonoma Tilemakers’ Stellar Marea, available through Decora Ceramic Tile & Natural Stone
ALWAYS TIME FOR TILE
Whether it’s glass, ceramic, porcelain or stone, tiles are the most common type of material for backsplashes. And whatever your style, there’s an inexhaustible array of colour and pattern choices.
Honeycomb and geometric tiles are trending at the moment and are a subtle way to make a modern style statement. Use one colour (like an edgy update on the subway tile) or bring in complementary hues for visual interest.
Scale Series available through Euro Ceramic Tile
This is a classic choice that can add lots of diversity whether you go for bright colours or just a subtle mix of complementary tones.
Available through Julian Tile
Ready to make your mark? Bright, colourful tile can create a show-stopping backdrop in your kitchen. It’s an easy way to add a pop in a neutral kitchen, or even add a another layer of saturation to a colourful room.
Walker Zanger tile available through Island Floor Centre
If you like a bit of lustre and want a sleek, contemporary look, go for metal, from stainless steel to tiles that are finished in a look and texture that resembles real metal.
Casa Roma Lantern tile available through Hourigan’s Flooring
While the most common size for subway tiles has been 3″ x 6″, we’re now seeing subway tiles in larger sizes. A large format subway tile backsplash can be especially helpful for a small kitchen where the large tiles create the perception of space. Or, to mix it up, skinny subway tile laid in a herringbone pattern is very pleasing to the eye.
Tierra Sol Chevron Mosaic in a project by Island Floor Centre
Mix it up
For an interesting contrast between matte and gloss, natural stone and sleek metal combine to create a sophisticated, polished look with a bit of shine.
Bedrock Series in Titanio White available through Ames Tile & Stone
A SOLID CHOICE
A slab backsplash is a backsplash made of a continuous material. The solid surface creates a different visual effect than a more modular tile. When matched to the countertop, it can create an especially sophisticated look.
It’s a Wrap
For a modern, streamlined look, consider bringing your quartz countertop up the walls instead of using the traditional backsplash tiles.
Cambria Brittanicca available through Floform
Have some fun
Like wallpaper, tile can also act as artwork. Instead of creating a repeating pattern out of matching individual tiles, try interjecting randomization with complementary geometric motifs.
Centanni Tile Chess Series available through Design District Access