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High – Low: Backsplash Ideas

After sharing my White Subway Tile Backsplash Tutorials here and here, I started thinking about all of the other backsplash options for those of you who are looking to update your backsplash but are not completely sold on white subway tiles.

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I was extremely tempted to do something a little more colorful, shapely, or unique while designing our kitchen, but I just couldn’t get over the affordability and classic style of white subway tiles. Rounding up backsplash options made me want just one more kitchen to renovate, so that I could go with something a little more unique and flavorful.

So today, I wanted to give you options to consider on your coming kitchen renovation or just to daydream about (or is that just me who daydreams about tiles?). I’m starting with the most expensive option and going down to the most affordable. There are stunning possibilities for all price points.

Average tiling costs from Home Advisor.

Quartz/Marble – $50-$3000 p/sq ft

How gorgeous is an extended coutertop as your backsplash? It’s not only easy on the eye, it is also one of the most hygienic and easiest to clean options. Quartz and marble are two of the most popular choices. Quartz can run you anywhere from $50-$100 per sq ft. (Check out my post all about quartz here.) Marble, on the other hand, can be as much as $3,000 per sq ft.

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There are beautiful honed marble tile sheets that are much more affordable than purchasing a slab of marble. This is one of my favorites…

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Glass Tile – $32 p/sq ft

Glass tile is such a popular choice for two reasons: ease of installation and beautiful color options. Glass tiles are typically bought in 12″X12″ sheets, which can be costly when you’re covering a large area. Glass tile was especially popular in 90s – early 2000 homes. You will often see small, glass mosaic tile sheets used as backsplash in that time period, which can still be a nice option, but certain colors and styles can also date a home. The larger, neutral glass tiles are definitely stealing the show nowadays.

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Cement/Stone – $30 p/sq ft

If I had to install another kitchen backsplash, I would choose cement tile. The color options are unlimited and the designs are stunning! Ceramic tiles also come in similar prints, the cement tiles have a lovely texture that’s hard to beat. You can find quality cement tile at a fairly affordable (yet still more than ceramic) box price, or you can choose gorgeous hand-made tile for a small fortune. The con with cement tiles is that you have to reseal them every couple years.

If you love cement tile but are intimidated, like me, consider using these in these three options:

  1. Tile halfway up the wall instead of the entire wall.
  2. Only tile one wall.
  3. Use cement tiles above your range with the rest of your backsplash being white subway tiles.

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Ceramic – $25 p/sq ft

Ceramic tile is the most economical tile out there. You can find ceramic subway tile for as low as $.69. Though I laid our subway tile in the traditional brick pattern, there are many other options if you’re looking to use an affordable tile in a stylish, unique way. Centsational Girl compiled several patterns to consider when using subway tile.

 

The other highlighting features of ceramic tiles are the sizes, shapes, and color options. Ceramic tiles would be your most economical, durable choice when tile shopping. You typically see glazed tiles in the kitchens and unglazed tiles in high traffic areas such as patios. You see it everywhere for a good reason.

 

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Unique Options

If you want to stray away from tile all together and go with a different option, there are several to choose from. A lot of these are even more affordable than tile. Think outside the box when it comes to your backsplash. It’s the one area in your kitchen where you can add something fun, unique, and stylish.

Planks

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Lowes

 

Metal/Tin Tiles

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Lowes – Tin Ceiling Tile

Faux Brick

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Pin for Later!

If you had the chance to choose any backsplash you wanted, which would you pick?

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5 Comments

  • Reply
    Kristen
    February 23, 2017 at 8:38 am

    This makes me want to buy a home! I am a sucker for subway tile but I love the glass tile and the brick!

  • Reply
    Ashley Stephenson
    February 23, 2017 at 10:26 am

    I love these back splash ideas! I really want to try to do this in our kitchen – we don’t have a lot of area that would be covered so it seems like it would be a fairly manageable project!

  • Reply
    Reeni
    February 23, 2017 at 12:47 pm

    Thank you for sharing these! My husband and I are going to be redoing our kitchen backsplash this summer! 🙂 I agree with you though… I think the classic style of white subway tiles is the direction we are going to go!

    • Reply
      Diana
      February 23, 2017 at 3:39 pm

      There are definitely several beautiful alternatives to subway tile, but it’s just so hard to pass up how classic and affordable it is. Best of luck on your summer project!

  • Reply
    Patricia @ Grab a Plate
    February 23, 2017 at 10:56 pm

    So many great options here, and some things I had no idea about! So happy to have found this! I pinned for later.

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