It’s Tilemageddon! Deciding to Tile our Kitchen Backsplash

All right, friends. It’s happening. This one might be the end of me, but I once thought that about painting my kitchen cabinets and I made it through that so… I can make it through this?

The “this” is tiling my kitchen backsplash myself. Possibly even expanding the tile to another wall entirely, demoing out some existing cabinets, and building custom open shelves in their place.

Because this is what I’m rockin’ right now, and it’s not pretty:


Mmmm. That creamy tile with brown accents. That warm almond stove and range hood. It gets me excited depressed just looking at it.

After going down a little internet wormhole, I realized I might be able to paint the tile, which could tide me over until I could plan something more intense. This was something I needed to kind of visualize, though, so in swooped my handy amateur Photoshop skills. Some of you (and I love you so much for even thinking me worth your time of day for participating in this) remember looking through my slideshow of some paint color contenders for the existing tiles, and I was curious about your votes for the best color. (It also featured fake stainless appliances because my eyes were bleeding looking at the almond bisque stove.)

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I was pretty sold on charcoal or navy—and you were too!—but I sat on it for awhile. This is extremely rare for me, but hey, I’m evolving. 🙂 And I wasn’t quite sure about it. This was a good thing, because then I saw this:


Yeah, that’s an iPhone screenshot. I’ll sink to that level when I see something adorable and know I won’t remember it later! And I thought this was adorable and doable. Some white glossy paint goes down first. A crazy amount of painter’s tape goes down and is X-ACTO’d later to create a perfect arrangement of triangles. Charcoal paint is rolled on, tape is peeled off, and bada-bing bada-boom, I’m in business with a cute geometric backsplash. You can see where that was going… B-O-A-T-L-O-A-D of work, probably nice, but worth the time?

Then, I saw this!


Yeah, another screenshot. I spend a lot of time on Buzzfeed via Facebook. 🙂

Check out that pretty stenciled backsplash. The intricacy! The interest! And I mulled over this and shopped stencils and thought, maybe I can make this work! Maybe I can fake some fancy tiles! And I sat on this for awhile, too. During my stencil shopping, I realized that the stencil would need to relatively line up with the tile size, or be exactly proportionate, in order to pull it off. Meaning my tiles are 3.75″ squares, so the stencil would need to be exactly that, or basically quadruple that, so the pattern edges would line up with a tile edge and the grout lines would still make sense.

Anyone tired of reading a bunch of my stupid waffling on tile decisions? Samesies.

Fast-forward, and I read this awesome whirlwind kitchen makeover that one of my favorite bloggers, Julia and Chris Marcum of Chris Loves Julia, did for a couple in Baltimore. Killer. Amazing. And the white subway tiles they used were only $0.22 a pop. Suddenly, the DIY painting project transformed into a full-on demo and re-tile project. Chris surely isn’t pleased with me for this one, but he agreed to help so you heard it here first. 🙂

I’ve never tiled anything before, so I’m sure I’ll run into some hilarious and frustrating mistakes along the way, but my plan is to demo the existing tile this weekend, and then tile the following weekend. The kicker? I think this is only going to cost about $150. Now tell me anyone couldn’t also do this. #groutinmyhairfordays

Now I’ll leave you with the rest of my inspiration, and keep your fingers crossed I don’t cut off a finger taking the beige tile out this weekend.


2 thoughts on “It’s Tilemageddon! Deciding to Tile our Kitchen Backsplash

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