Renovating Your Kitchen? Backsplash Advice

By Steven V. Philips –

N- Drainboard

So soon, but Thanksgiving and Christmas are looming. Misery Days for some, but not for you. You still like the idea of the preparation. The anticipation. The food. And marginally, The Family. Yeah, the Family that still includes Uncle Mike who just retired and is now embroidering suits for cats and Uncle Wayne who has just gotten yet another motorcycle tattoo some place that could be hidden by a Speedo.

Beyond all of this is the real fun. This is the final Thanksgiving for your old kitchen. By giving your husband Cheerios for lunch and making the kids pay for car pool rides, you’ve saved enough to redo the kitchen in 2015. And since your new kitchen planning starts soon, but before it’s on paper, let me sample you some back-splash ideas to expand your thinking.

Black-splash blender: When a designer friend recently re-did her kitchen, she got creative. Her appliances were already white and the new cabinetry was ordered in white. Wow. Very radical is this, using white appliances! If I gave out her address, the Stainless Steel Users Group might picket. Anyway, you know the “whites” are never exactly the same value so, to blur the slight variances and to pull the room together, her back-splash mosaic is a mix of whites from bright to dreamy cream with a bit of taupe and camel too. Finished off with an ivory counter top. The all-white kitchen is still America’s favorite, but matching whites in a room is nearly impossible. Don’t try. Designers say that if you can’t fix it, shine a light on it. In an all-white kitchen that means maximizing the differing hues. A backsplash with many whites will be the ribbon that ties all the whites together. The room will look like you planned it that way.

Concealed outlet
Concealed outlet


Outlet hidden: You need electric power near your work area. Code won’t allow you to place an outlet into a horizontal work surface and outlets really do show on the back-splash. But here’s a solution to have that outlet(s) near by but invisible when not in use. This custom built back-splash shelf detail even allows you to close the door but let the cord out over the top. By Henrybuilt,

Knife block: Another convenience story. You want knives near but not too near and also not chewing each other up in a drawer! And how very cool does this look? OK, the stainless shelf just may a bit pricey, but by billing your husband for lunches, you could replace it with a sheet of Corian! By Viola Park.

N- Knife rack
Knife block

Drip-drop-drainboard: One more clever-backsplash-idea is this dish/glass drainer that allows the drips to drop right onto the counter and drain away. Fabricated out of a water resistant wood, and if you didn’t get stuck with Aunt Ellen’s old chipped dishes, this also could be display/storage. By Riva.

Reflections; Another simple solution is to use a mirror, or mirror tiles, for your back-splash. The mirror will double the light from the under-cabinet fixtures and visually expand a smaller room plus, drive guests crazy thinking they’re looking though the wall.

Enjoy more backsplash real estate!
Enjoy more backsplash real estate!

Increase the backsplash real estate: The big trend today in backsplash design is to make a feature wall out of the backsplash. Bright it right up to the ceiling whenever you can.

Your art: Finally here’s obviously a true-genius idea, and a seen-nowhere-else back-splash. Using a piece of plate glass, with a U-channel at the bottom and clips at the top to allow you to remove it, you can have a changeable art gallery. Use posters, trip souvenirs or photographs you’ve taken. Or, better yet, your kid’s art. The masterpieces will stay clean, unwrinkled and off the refrigerator.



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