Kitchen Backsplash Design Ideas and Other Ways to Elevate a Kitchen

At Che Bella Interiors Design + Remodeling, we believe good design should serve both form and function in every room of your home—especially kitchens. Just because these spaces are inherently utilitarian, doesn’t mean they can’t also be beautiful. Not to mention that when you consider the amount of time we spend in our kitchens, there’s tremendous value in making sure yours is an aesthetically pleasing, joyful, and expressive space.

A change that can have a significant impact on the look and feel of your kitchen is a new backsplash. Here, we’ll take a closer look at several kitchen backsplash design ideas. However, your kitchen backsplash is just the beginning. We’ll also highlight a few other kitchen updates with transformative potential.

And remember: With a mindful approach to design, you can have the best of both worlds when it comes to form and function—in your kitchen, and throughout your entire home.

Kitchen Backsplash Design Ideas

Kitchen backsplashes cover the area behind kitchen counters from inadvertent splashing and water damage. They’re also useful for protecting walls from grease and food splatter during meal prep and cooking, as well as for avoiding damage from accidental contact with everything from knives to the food itself.

However, kitchen backsplashes offer much more than protection. They can also add visual appeal to your space in a way that uniquely compliments your home’s style and ambiance. In this sense, we recommend thinking of your kitchen backsplash as a blank canvas. Whether you’re looking to add an element of elegance, glamour, drama, charm, sophistication, or whimsy to your kitchen, you can accomplish your aesthetic goals with the right backsplash.

One last thing to know about backsplashes? They have a high effort-to-enjoyment ratio. While they don’t typically involve a lot of work or expense, they can exponentially improve the time you spend in your kitchen.

Ready to get started? Here’s a look at some of our favorite materials – tile, stone and marble – and different pattern ideas for enhancing your home with a backsplash.

Tile Backsplashes

Tile tops the list for designers and homeowners alike when it comes to backsplash material—and with good reason. To begin with, several types of tile are convenient for backsplashes, including ceramic, porcelain, glass, and even peel-and-stick.  Furthermore, you’ve also got a breathtaking array of sizes, colors, and designs to choose from with kitchen tile.

Tile Style, Patterns, and Placement

Speaking of designs, there are many options when you choose tile for your kitchen backsplash. Here’s a look at a few of the most popular patterns that can be achieved with rectangular “subway” tiles:

  • Herringbone. Inspired by fish bones, herringbone—also common in wood and fabric—is one of the most common backsplash patterns. It involves alternating rows of parallel tiles slanting in different directions that add up to a “broken” zig-zag pattern. This lively design can be used with same-color tiles to create a more subtle appearance, or with different colored tiles for a bolder look. Herringbone is also common in wood and fabric.
  • Chevron. Often confused with herringbone, chic chevron is a similar geometric pattern. However, with chevron, the tiles are cut at an angle and meet in a “V” shape for a seamless zig-zag pattern. It is visually tighter and tidier than herringbone. As such, it can be a more striking (and less subtle) choice when chosen for a backsplash or flooring.
  • Straight stack. Straight stack tiles are laid straight on top of one another, either horizontally or vertically—side to side or end to end. This has a precise, clean, modern look.
  • Offset brick. One of the most classic looks, offset brick patterns feature offset stacked tile—usually by ½ or ⅓. This technique adds flair while also concealing any installation imperfections.

Additionally, different shaped tiles—such as rhombus, hex, and square—can be used for a variety of effects depending on factors like pattern and color.

Whether you go with something monochromatic like on-trend subway tile or create a custom pattern with ceramic tile, a tile backsplash is an effective way to enhance your kitchen.

Tile placement is also a consideration. Depending on the desired effect and your budget, your backsplash can simply span the area connecting your counter or cabinets, or it can extend all the way to the ceiling.

partial kitchen remodel Shakopee MN

==> This Shakopee, MN partial kitchen remodel by Che Bella Interiors uses a chevron patterned backsplash to inject personality and interest.  

Beyond Tile: Marble and Stone Backsplashes

As an alternative to tile, marble and other stones are also elegant and distinctive options. Not only does marble’s smooth, glistening sheen offer results ranging from soft and subtle to bold and dramatic, but it also pairs well with a variety of counter styles and colors. And although white marble can be tricky when used for countertops because it’s prone to scratching and staining, it’s a wonderful fit for backsplashes, which aren’t subject to the same level of use.

Natural stone backsplashes are another beautiful option for your kitchen. These backsplashes are great for adding both texture and personality. Not only will this type of backsplash elevate your kitchen design, it will also make your space unique with a luxurious, one-of-a-kind look.

Ways to Elevate Kitchen Design

While backsplashes are one of the most sought-after kitchen upgrades by today’s homeowners, they’re far from the only way to elevate your environment. Here’s a look at some other techniques—both large and small—that can help you create the kitchen of your dreams.

1. Upgrade Drawer Pulls and Cabinet Knobs

Even though you use them multiple times a day, many people don’t give much thought to their drawer pulls and cabinet knobs. However, swapping out your current hardware can completely alter the personality and style of your kitchen.

From modern designs to antique influences, you have many different styles and finish options when it comes to instantly upgrading your kitchen drawer pulls and cabinet knobs.

2. Replace Flooring

As high-traffic areas, kitchen floors endure a lot of wear and tear. Whether your floors have sustained damage or are just outdated in style, replacing them can make a huge difference.

Of course, all flooring isn’t created equal, which is why it’s so important to consider both your style and needs when upgrading.

For example, if you’re looking for more of a classic look in your kitchen, wood flooring can be a striking choice when undertaking a kitchen floor replacement.

Looking for something versatile and sustainable, meanwhile? Bamboo may fit the bill.

Other kitchen flooring options include luxury vinyl tile and luxury vinyl two types of flooring are economical, durable, and look like the real thing.

3. Update Kitchen Countertops

Countertops are one of the most prominent elements of your kitchen. A kitchen countertop replacement can have many benefits, including a more attractive appearance, better functionality, and easier care and maintenance. If you’re thinking of selling anytime soon, choosing the right countertop materials can help you get top dollar.

Popular types of kitchen countertops include quartz, granite, marble, quartzite, porcelain, and wood. From price to performance, each type of countertop material has its own pros and cons.

4. Upgrade to Energy Efficient Kitchen Appliances

“Elevating” your kitchen can be about even more than form and functionality. It can also make a difference for the planet. By conserving energy, energy-efficient fridges, stoves, and other kitchen appliances can reduce both your utility bills and your carbon footprint.

Another reason to upgrade kitchen appliances? Green features are one of the improvements homebuyers are willing to pay more for up front.

5. Install New Lighting Fixtures

Kitchen lighting is about much more than providing critical illumination to see by while you prepare and serve meals. It can also make or break how your kitchen looks and feels. If you haven’t given much thought to your kitchen lighting or you’ve been getting by with ho-hum lighting because you don’t think it’s that important, you’ve been missing out on the opportunity to use lighting to make your kitchen more inviting and invigorating.

Chandeliers, pendant lighting, sconces, and other light fixtures are available in a breathtaking selection of styles, sizes, and designs. From glittering crystal chandeliers to modern flush-mount fixtures, the right kitchen light fixtures can easily take your kitchen from dull to dazzling.

Contemporary Kitchen with Waterfall Edge

==> Lighting is another way to infuse personality into your kitchen space as seen with this dramatic yet timeless pendant lighting found here in our Edina, MN kitchen remodel project, The Timeless. 

The kitchen is the heart of your home. In addition to the countless hours you spend preparing food and sharing meals with your family, it’s also a gathering spot, homework hub, and on-the-fly home office. If yours isn’t everything you want it to be, isn’t it worthy of an upgrade? Whether you incorporate one or all of these ideas into your kitchen remodeling project, you’ll be on your way to giving your kitchen the boost it deserves.

Looking to do even more to enhance both the look and feel of your kitchen? Let us know. From replacing kitchen countertops and flooring to upgrading hardware and lighting, our experienced team is ready to guide you through your option to design and bring to life a symbiotic space that speaks to your goals for your home and how you want to live in it. We’d love to help you design a kitchen that is beautifully yours.

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