Dive Into Your Backsplash

A backsplash is an area for a kitchen to stand out or fade in. It’s an area to make a statement, frame a feature, or be a subtle backdrop. Aside from directly behind the stovetop or sink of an aggressive kitchen-user, it’s not an area that will see a lot of wear and tear. According to Cabinet Creations Designer Claire, “It’s a pretty safe space to do what you want.” When planning your backsplash, there are a variety of materials and patterns to consider.

Backsplash Material


A trend we’re seeing right now is utilizing countertop materials. Continuing a piece of countertop up the wall creates a sleek, clean, modern look. Alternatively, use another color to compliment your countertop material.

Ceramic & Porcelain Tile

Ceramic and porcelain tiles have been used in homes for centuries. The materials are durable, and easy to clean. These materials come in a variety of colors, shapes, and sizes to suit just about any style.


There’s no denying the beauty of natural stone. Keep in mind stone requires a bit of extra care – it’s a porous material and needs to be sealed.

Zellige Tile

If you’re looking for something truly special, consider hand molded Zellige tile. These small, square tiles originate from Morocco and are created from unrefined clay. Due to their hand made nature, no two Zellige tiles are exactly the same which creates an imperfect, beautiful texture.


Glass tiles are beautiful and can create a distinct look. A modern take on glass backsplashes is to forgo the tiles and use large sheets. To offer a variety of color choices, the back is painted or for better durability, baked on. Since glass is non-porous, it’s long-lasting, stain resistant and cleaning is a breeze. Although glass is used commonly as a backsplash material, it requires a special process and tools to be properly installed.

Pattern Options

Subway Tile

This timeless design originates from the creation of the New York subway tunnels in the early 1900s. The 3”x 6” tile pattern is still popular today. A modern twist to the classic design is to use oversized 3”x12” or 3”x18” tiles and offset to the previous row by a third instead of the traditional half tile.

Penny Tile and Hexagon

A few more classic designs are these small tiles that are either round or in an hexagon shape. When installed, they are reminiscent of a mosaic. While popular in kitchens and bathrooms of the early 1900s, this design is popular in many homes today.


The picket design is an elongated hexagon that is similar to a cut gemstone shape. This design gets its name from the shape created by the tops of a picket fence. While often installed vertically, they can be placed horizontally or diagonally for the more adventurous person.

Chevron and Herringbone

Both chevron and herringbone patterns have been around for centuries used in French, Greek, and Celtic designs. While they both incorporate stacked, rectangular tiles on the diagonal, the chevron’s ends are cut at an angle to allow the smaller ends to directly join together.

The Best Option Is Yours

When it comes to backsplash materials and patterns, there’s no wrong choice. Ultimately, choose what best suits your personal style or the design aesthetic goals. Speak with your designer about other possibilities or even combining options for a unique look. No matter the final decision, there are great materials and pattern options available.

Kirk Richardson
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