Natural stone backsplashes have a distinctly different texture than tiles, and offer a contrast to smooth counters and cabinets. Stone is porous, however, which makes it harder to clean and more prone to chipping. An alternative to using smaller, stacked stones is to continue the same granite or marble used for the countertops all the way up the wall.
If you’d like to break up all the straight lines in a contemporary kitchen, add a little curve to your countertop design. A curve, especially in the seating area, creates an inviting, communal place where it’s easier to sit and have a face-to-face conversation with each other.
While countertops, flooring and cabinets are generally places to keep it simple, the backsplash is a good place to inject some personal style, whether that’s with a mosaic feature or a bold color. And since that wall literally connects the countertops with the cabinets it’s also a place to tie everything together.
Of course, different styles of wood can achieve completely different aesthetics. If you’re looking for your final project to have a more streamlined feel, you’ll probably want to opt for the manufactured tongue-and-groove pieces that are sold at home improvement stores. But if your dream backsplash consists a truly unique and aged look, you can create a one-of-a-kind design from reclaimed wood pieces.
Given the numerous shapes, sizes and colors available, ceramic tile is probably the most versatile option (it’s also proven to be timeless). There’s plenty of room to play with patterns while still maintaining clean lines: stack tiles in columns, stagger them, or lay them at an angle. Most tile requires minimal maintenance, just be sure to seal the grout so it doesn’t get stained or absorb water.
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