Remodeling Wisdom: 10 Budget Backsplash Hacks

When the kitchen remodeling budget is tight: 10 ideas for finessing the backsplash issue.

1. Glass

an artist
Above: An artist’s studio kitchen is full of creative and inexpensive remodeling ideas: The backsplash is a sheet of painted glass, salvaged from an old project and glued in place. A round industrial magnet serves as a utensil holder. Photograph by Kim Lightbody, from Kitchen of the Week: A Glassmaker’s Imaginative Studio Kitchen in London, DIY Ikea Hacks Included.

2. Chalkboard Paint

designer c.s. valentin
Above: Designer C.S. Valentin’s apartment features a kitchen backsplash fashioned from slabs of wood painted with chalkboard paint. Photograph by Jonathan Hökklo, from At Home with C. S. Valentin: French Eclecticism in Cobble Hill, Brooklyn.

3. Painted Plywood

norwegian blogger nina holst of stylizmo created a backsplash using birch plywo 11
Above: Norwegian blogger Nina Holst of Stylizmo created a backsplash using birch plywood stained black. Photograph by Nina Holst for Stylizimo, from Kitchen Upgrade: The Low-Cost DIY Backsplash.

4. Selective Tiling

instead of tiling the entire wall above the kitchen counter, consider the cost  12
Above: Instead of tiling the entire wall above the kitchen counter, consider the cost-effective strategy of using tiles just where you most need them: above the sink and stove. Photograph by Ruby Woodhouse, from A Vintage-Inspired Apartment in Hackney from Abel Sloane and Ruby Woodhouse of 1934.

5. Marble Scrap

in fabr studio’s office kitchen, a slab of marble, left over from a kitc 13
Above: In Fabr Studio’s office kitchen, a slab of marble, left over from a kitchen project, serves as oversized backsplash. Photograph by Matthew Williams for Remodelista, from Kitchen of the Week: An Architecture Firm’s Own DIY Kitchen in Williamsburg, Ikea Hacks Included.

6. Metal Sheet

for a project in the catskills, jersey ice cream co. created an ingenious backs 14
Above: For a project in the Catskills, Jersey Ice Cream Co. created an ingenious backsplash out of copper flashing purchased inexpensively online and nailed in place with copper tacks. Photography by Beth Kirby of Local Milk, from A Country House Reinvented by Jersey Ice Cream Co.
and brass sheet as backsplash, as seen in the catskills farmhouse of two brookl 15
Above: And brass sheet as backsplash, as seen in The Catskills Farmhouse of Two Brooklyn Creatives, Weekend DIY Edition. Photograph by April Valencia, courtesy of Rip & Tan.

7. Stick-up Tiles

smart tile backsplash
Above: Canadian company Smart Tiles offers peel-and-stick embossed Gel-O tile look-alikes; shown is the Hexago pattern. Photograph via Atelier de Curiosite.

8. Color Blocking

Remodeling Wisdom 10 Budget Backsplash Hacks portrait 6_32
Above: Color-blocking the wall can create the illusion of a backsplash. Photograph courtesy of British Standard, from Kitchen of the Week: Stardust in Northwest London.
another example of paint as backsplash, from a kitchen for the people, courtesy 18
Above: Another example of paint-as-backsplash, from A Kitchen for the People, Courtesy of Prince Charles.

9. Beadboard

abbey hendrickson of aesthetic outburst installed a diy beadboard backspla 19
Above: Abbey Hendrickson of Aesthetic Outburst installed a DIY beadboard backsplash over the old yellow linoleum and contact paper. “We picked up two sheets of cheapo beadboard paneling from our local hardware store, nailed it horizontally, caulked it, painted it, and voilà. A solution in less than two hours and for less than $60.” Photograph by Abbey Hendrickson, from Kitchen of the Week: A DIY Kitchen Overhaul for Under $500.

10. Waterproof Wallpaper

 kitchen walls, a company out of the netherlands, has developed a hea 20
Above: Kitchen Walls, a company out of the Netherlands, has developed a heat- and stain-resistant wallpaper that can be applied to almost any surface, creating an instant kitchen backsplash. Made of PVC, the wallpaper is impermeable to water, “so it’s usable behind your stove. It can be cleaned with warm water and even the most terrible stains, such as grease or tomato sauce, will disappear without effort.” The Designers Collection by Kirath Ghundoo; €145 ($159) a roll. See more at The Instant Backsplash: Stain-Resistant Wallpaper from the Netherlands.

N.B. This post has been updated with new ideas and images; the original story ran on June 27, 2019.

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