Pattern on the Backsplash

turquoise and black damask pattern tileAfter ten years of white subways and grout, kitchen tile trends are shifting

There’s more action in the kitchen these days and it’s on the walls. Patterned tiles of every type – from mixed mosaics to damask prints — are appearing more often in kitchens which, let’s face it, have been suffering from glazed subway tile fatigue for several years. Nothing wrong with subway tile but there are so many other choices.

One strong look is glazed stylized floral patterns with bold colors.  We’ve all seen modern white kitchens that can feel a bit generic. By introducing bold backsplash color and pattern, then picking up the black with the hood and the counters, this vivid turkish pattern tile from Ann Sacks, together with Absolute black granite counters, ramps up the magazine-worthiness of what might otherwise be just another white Boffi kitchen kitchen in a 1960s Washington, D.C. townhouse. Lucite backs on the leathe-seated Whiz barstools form Paston Rawleigh Everett make them appear ghostlike.

small-scale geometric pattern kitchen tile backsplashI adore geometrics and big walls of tile. This kitchen done with Ann Sacks Nottingham 4″ x 4″ honeycomb tile in a color called “veil” has both and while the color is neutral, the small-scale pattern on the entire wall makes it look very interesting and rich. It’s also practical since this this tile has a hard body and durable glaze — perfect for a wall that will be wiped down but never require painting.

multicolor herringbone, diagonal tile backsplash Herringbone patterns are normally used on floors or confined to medallion  behind the range.  This break-out pattern in muted colors is so original it makes the kitchen unforgettable. Unfortunately, the  island is ordinary and the color overpowers the backsplash (and everything else). I’d repaint in the taupe or the blue and keep the focus on the best feature, not the worst.

blue diamond-shape tile kitchen backsplash with wide grout linesA simple backsplash composed of diamond-shape tile takes advantage of color variation in the tiles and relatively thick grout lines. This backsplash also reminds me of snakeskin – in the best way. Scales are a motif used for tile since ancient times and one that’s always simple and sophisticated.

See more in Patterned Tile Backsplashes.

(Source: House Beautiful, structures building, bh&g, paul raeside)

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5 Responses to Pattern on the Backsplash

  1. Allison June 8, 2012 at 10:40 am #

    When I saw the first picture in HB, I pulled for a post. :) Love that tile, but when I looked at the price it sure hurt!

  2. RHome410 June 8, 2012 at 10:05 pm #

    I LOVE these, especially the first and second. But a lot of expense, work, and hard to change if it ever becomes dated or one of those things you tire of. Not that I went with white subways, and I seem to love the examples every time you show patterned backsplashes. I’d really wanted something like the first over my baking center in the right colors.. but wasn’t finding them and what I was finding even in the wrong colors, I couldn’t afford.


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