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Painting Your Backsplashes
Backsplashes Header
Backsplashes are a relatively small part of your kitchen.  Often, they're just that neutral wall space between your counters and your cabinets.  But that doesn't need to be the case.  With a little paint, a little creativity and a little help from RepcoLite, you could turn your backsplash into the focal point of your kitchen.

And just to get your creative ideas flowing, here are a few great ideas to start with:

Faux Ceramic Tile

Since backsplashes usually make up a small part of your kitchen, they offer you the perfect opportunity to make a bold statement.  See, bold colors on large wall surfaces can often become overwhelming.  But those same bold colors, reined in and controlled on a smaller scale, (like a kitchen backsplash, for example), can create a stunning visual in an otherwise plain and simple kitchen. 
The picture at the left is a perfect example.  That same red or dark grey used in the tiles would completely overwhelm the kitchen if used as a solid color on a wall or even on the backsplash.  But breaking that color up into smaller doses provides this kitchen with a splash of color that balances the large areas of white brought about by the cabinets.


Neutral Tile

(click here for Faux Finish Instructions)

Maybe bold color's not your thing.  Maybe you're thinking that you'd rather see a nice, neutral ceramic tile look on your backsplash.  Well, if that's the case, have no worries.  Creating an interesting backsplash that adds to the look of your kitchen isn't something only for those with bold tastes in color.  By using a combination of ragging and sponging techniques coupled with some varying neutral paint tones, creating a classic ceramic tile backsplash is easy.

But don't fall into the trap of thinking that since you're using neutral colors, you don't need to be creative.  Keep in mind that there are a million different ways your creativity can play out--color is only one of them.  For example, think about painting your faux ceramic tile on an angle, creating a diamond pattern on the backsplash rather than the standard rows.  Think about alternating the colors of your tile in a checker board pattern.  Even though you're using neutral tones, you can still use lighter neutrals for some tiles and darker tones for others.

StampedAnd don't quit there.  Keep thinking and looking for ways to incorporate all sorts of other creative ideas.  How about this one:  are you into scrapbooking?  What about stamping?  Well, take a look at some of your stamps and see if you could incorporate it into the faux ceramic tile backsplash as a sort of "accent tile."  What I mean is this:  I just took a walk through a local art supply store and scoped out their rubber stamps.  I saw some large (about 4" x 6") samples of handwriting.  I saw others that showed about 4 - 5 lines of musical notation.  Others displayed floral patterns and swirls and various flourishes.  Any of these stamps would add tremendous interest to a neutral, faux ceramic tile look on your backsplash.  Just plan out a handful of tiles, scattered through your layout, that will function as the accent pieces.  Then, when you've painted everything else, just stamp your image or pattern of choice into these "tiles." 


Wallpaper Ceramic Tile

Want to achieve the look of ceramic tile but are you hesitant to try to achieve it using paint?  Well, here are a couple options.  First, stop out at RepcoLite and look through some of the wallpaper books.  Many of the patterns look like ceramic tile and can easily be installed on your backsplash.  However, sometimes, this can be expensive as you've got to take into account all the scrap you'll produce each time you cut the paper to fit (remember, wallpaper has a pattern and that pattern always has a repeat.  You can't just start the next run of paper down your wall right where you cut the previous one.  Sometimes you lose up to 24" each time you cut and start a new run). 

If that's the case and you don't want to spend all that money, then try this:  pick out a wallpaper with a ceramic tile pattern OR pick out a paper that has a nondescript marble pattern.  Cut the marble pattern into 6 x 6 squares OR simply cut out the tiles from your tile-look paper.  Then, paint your backsplash wall a lighter color (to represent the grout) and then install each square separately.  You'll find your wallpaper will go much farther now that the pattern repeat doesn't matter, and you'll have the option to completely customize the wallpaper pattern.  You could turn the "tiles" on their points and create a diamond pattern.  You could stamp lighter tiles using an accent paint color and a scrapbooking stamp (as we talked about above).  Again, the options are endless--you're only limited by your own creativity.


"Tin-Ceiling" Backsplash

A fourth option (and the one we'll leave you with) is the idea of putting a "tin-ceiling" backsplash in a particlar area (behind your stove for instance). And before you start wondering where you'll get tin ceiling tiles and how you'll affix them to your wall, let me just tell you that all you'll need is a special kind of wallpaper.  It's called Anaglypta paper and it comes in all sorts of textured patterns.   copper

We have books of it at RepcoLite and it's very inexpensive.  It's basically just a paintable wallpaper that has a texture imprinted in it.  You install it with regular wallpaper adhesive and, when it's up and dry, you paint it.  Putting a couple runs of this behind your stove and then painting it a deep copper color (and glazing over it with Benjamin Moore's Pearlescent Metallic Glaze) will produce a rich, brushed metal look for a fraction (literally) of the price.

And again, don't limit yourself.  If the metal-look isn't your thing, then paint that paper an accent color and glaze over another lighter or darker color to expose and highlight the texture. 

It's easy to work with, it's inexpensive AND it will produce great results.  

It's Up to You

Those ideas are just a springboard.  If you're looking for some inexpensive ways to spice up your kitchen, give them some thought and see if you can come up with one or a combination of them that works for you.  (And if you do, stop in and let us know how it turned out.  If it worked, that is.  If it didn't . . . well . . . let's just figure it will).


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