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Consider this inspiration for the ultimate kitchen glow up.
Designing a kitchen requires many decisions to be made, but one of the most fun is selecting the backsplash. In fact, this kitchen element—which covers a portion of or all of kitchen walls—is ripe for adding personality to the design to coordinate with cabinetry, lighting, appliances, and hardware.
Whether you envision a white kitchen, blue kitchen, or kitchen with other colors, you have many kitchen backsplash ideas to choose from. The most classic is traditional tile—like a subway design in larger or slender shapes—that covers the space between the countertops and upper cabinets. With more kitchens featuring open shelves or even no upper storage, many designers, including Waterworks cofounder and author Barbara Sallick, are getting more innovative with "tile envelopes" where the backsplash tile covers the entire wall surface, while others are even using wallpaper as a backsplash material.
Whether you have a small kitchen or a large one, a modern kitchen, or a cottage-style one, we've got over 30 kitchen backsplash ideas to inspire the material and design for your project. Whatever you select, it's sure to make your kitchen dazzle with style. Here, our favorite designer-inspired kitchen backsplash ideas for 2022.
Belgium Blue Stone tiles by Country Floors make a statement under a rustic wooden beam in this Michigan lake house designed by Amy Meier. The kitchen cabinets are bandsawn knotty white oak—“the knottier the better,” as Meier said— and the kitchen island is painted Salamander by Benjamin Moore, bookended by displays of splatterware and copperware sourced from all across Michigan. The stools are by Bicyclette.
At this Bronxville, New York, home designed by Carrier and Company, the kitchen’s chic checkerboard backsplash, fashioned out of glazed terra-cotta tile (Ann Sacks), energizes the space. Perimeter countertops, Caesarstone. Sink fixtures, Waterworks
For an airy twist on the backsplash, designer Melanie Turner and architect Yong Pak placed the range in this Atlanta home in front of windows with a graceful arch that echo the tiled arcs in the barrel-vaulted ceiling. Encaustic cement tiles (Mosaic House) infuse the kitchen with the spirit of a French bistro.
Talk about bringing the outside in: At this Naples, Florida, home, designer Summer Thornton clad the kitchen backsplash with a hand-painted tropical wallpaper (de Gournay). To protect the wallpaper backsplash, Thornton covered it with a thin glass pane. The range is Lacanche; the leather stool upholstery is Moore & Giles.
For a small dose of pattern, designer Philip Gorrivan clad the backsplash of this Connecticut colonial with colorful Moroccan tile (Exquisite Surfaces), a graphic contrast to the kitchen's rustic maple butcher block and honed granite counters.
In the kitchen of this Connecticut home designed by Ashley Whittaker, a subway tile backsplash extends to the ceiling on the wall behind the range. A duo of disarming patterns (checkerboard flooring and a geo-floral seating fabric by Raoul) enlivens warm shades of white in counters, cabinetry, and subway tile. Counter stools, Palecek. Range, Viking. Pendant lighting, Charles Edwards
At his home in San Antonio, designer Todd Romano proves small kitchens are ideal for punchy pattern. Custom Talavera tiles are arranged in a graphic chevron pattern with glossy ebony cabinetry (Black, Fine Paints of Europe).
In the kitchen of this Sea Island home designed by Sara Gilbane, shimmering mosaic tile (Mosaic House) envelops the room. Addison Mizner-inspired beams and hand-forged iron bell-jar lighting by Formations lend rustic contrast. Counter tops, Caesarstone
At this Dallas home designed by Meredith McBrearty, glazed Moroccan tile (Clé tile) infuse the modern kitchen with hand-crafted texture. Blown-glass pendants by MoMA alum Alison Berger turn over-island lighting into modern art while quilted leather stools (Studio Piet Boon) and leathered quartzite counters add warmth. Range, Wolf.
At this Windsor, Florida, cottage, designer Alessandra Branca packed a powerful style punch with the blue-and-white Casa Branca tile backsplash, which stands in colorful contrast to a sleek, lacquered SieMatic island. The Palecek stools are covered in a Kravet fabric with Samuel & Sons trim. Fittings, Kohler. Pendants, Circa Lighting
For her kitchen bar in Connecticut, Waterworks cofounder and author of The Perfect Kitchen Barbara Sallick clad the walls with 4-by-8-inch subway tiles, which she took all the way up to the ceiling. "I love the grid they create, I love the materials, and I love the scale of the larger-size tile," Sallick says.
At the 2020 Kips Bay Decorator Show House Dallas, designer Chad Dorsey wowed his stunning kitchen design that centered on a dramatic backsplash made of a Chinoiserie-painted antique mirror by artist James Mobley on Industry Glass. The painted glass is inset into a Cambria stone-clad cased opening.
This Nashville, Tennessee, kitchen designed by Richard Hallberg features a backsplash "wall" made of square Belgian tile with a hig-gloss glaze that extends up to the ceiling. The glossy finish on the tile lends dynamic contrast to the rustic ceiling beams. Louis XIII reproduction stools (Dennis & Leen) are upholstered in a textural, raffia-style woven fabric (Opuzen). Cabinetry paint color, Egret by Sherwin-Williams
At this Utah mountain retreat designed by Tony Baratta, geometric pattern reigns in the kitchen, from the oversize checkerboard floor to the backsplash and wall tile, from Solar Antique Tiles, painted with quilt motifs. The pendants are from Dessin Fournir, and the range is Viking.
Austin, Texas-based designer Mark Cravotta has predicted the resurgence of craftsmanship in kitchen design in 2021, and we couldn't be more excited about that. "In the kitchen, there are so many more options now that are better than polished granite," Cravotta says. Backsplashes are ideal places to showcase craftsmanship and artisanry, as these handmade tiles illustrate.
In this kitchen, designer and Veranda Next Legend Jason Arnold took the countertop material—marble with gray veining—onto the walls as a backsplash for a seamless look.
At this California home designed by Mark D. Sikes, blue-and-white tile with an antiqued finish, along with creamy white cabinetry (White Tie, Farrow & Ball) and oil-rubbed bronze hardware (Rejuvenation), give the kitchen a warm, aged appearance. Sink and fixtures, Rohl
This galley kitchen on Brays Island, South Carolina, designed by Beth Webb, features a soapstone backsplash and countertops, which stand in dark contrast to the rift-cut white oak cabinetry. Range, Bertazzoni. Sink fixtures in unlacquered brass, Waterworks
At this Montana home designed by Palmer Weiss, the kitchen features a backsplash comprising rectangular tile laid out in a herringbone pattern, which adds depth to the moody, monochromatic space. Cabinetry and ebony finish, Provincial Store Fixtures. Silicon bronze brushed pulls, Rocky Mountain Hardware. Dual fuel range, Wolf
In this Georgia kitchen, designer James Farmer created a backsplash with slender, glazed subway tile to infuse pattern and texture into an otherwise neutral space. The kitchen is also featured in Farmer's most recent book, Arriving Home.
In the bar of her Mountain Brook, Alabama, home, designer Caroline Gidiere complemented cabinetry made of antique glass and Chippendale fretwork with a historic wallpaper: Philadelphia Harlequin, which dates back to the beginning of the 19th century, from Adelphi Paper Hangings. The stained mahogany is framed in fiery orange trim (Lava by Porter’s Paints) and gold leaf ceiling paper (Phillip Jeffries). Pendant lighting, Visual Comfort & Co.
This Connecticut kitchen designed by David Netto boasts a global air thanks to Scandinavian bent birch plywood stools (Alvar Aalto), a collection of copper cookware, and 19th-century Portuguese tilework (Solar Antique Tiles). Dual-fuel range, Wolf
In designer Philip Mitchell's Nova Scotia home, the servery features vertical V-groove paneling as the backsplash. Heirloom Limoges fish sets hang on the painted paneled walls. Wall color, Gray by Benjamin Moore
For Ellen Pompeo's Hollywood home, designer Martyn Lawrence Bullard clad the counterops and backsplach with marble. Along with the terra-cotta tile floors and Pompeo's European range, the white marble backsplash complete's the kitchen's old-world style.
Soft, smoky tones lend a high-fashion, sophisticated touch to the alluring yet tiny galley kitchen of this 18th-century flat in Paris. The upper cabinets feature mirrored eglomise facings, which echo the mirror backsplash and “almost look like venetian blinds,” notes decorator Jean-Louis Deniot. The lower cabinetry paint color is Midnight Oil by Benjamin Moore. Range, La Cornue
At this Austin, Texas, home designed by Angie Hranowski, colorful moths, which the owner refers to as her “barflies,” line up to form the bar’s groovy, zig-zag-striped wallpaper (Timorous Beasties). Cabinetry paint, Nocturnal Sea by Pratt & Lambert
In this Low Country home designed by Andrew Howard, the kitchen boasts an old-fashioned sensibility, thanks to the painted tile backsplash, brushed-brass-and-copper station lights (Ann-Morris), and a walnut island with baluster leg details. Stools, Serena & Lily. Counters, Caesarstone
This Los Angeles kitchen features a tile backsplash with a diamond and star pattern (Solar Antique Tiles) in an inky blue and crisp white palette that complements the wood grain cabinetry and green island top and chairs.
At this Palm Beach home designed by Phoebe Howard, the bar features blue walls and cabinetry, painted Van Deusen Blue by Benjamin Moore, accented by a backsplash made up of smoky mirror subway tile. The woven barstools are from Walters Wicker with cushions upholstered in a Ralph Lauren Home stripe.
This stunning kitchen designed by Hubert Zandberg Interiors features a backsplash in emerald green subway tile, which also covers the cookspace's open shelving. The range and depth of color in the tile glaze makes it the focal point of the room.
Blue-and-white glazed Moroccan tiles (Moorish Architectural Design) lend a far-flung vibe to the rooftop outdoor kitchen at this Alys Beach, Florida, retreat designed by architectural firm Khoury & Vogt and Atlanta-based interior designer Shirlene Brooks. Fixtures, Kohler