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Before & After Photos: Creative Backsplash

Before & After Photos, Kitchen
By on Apr 24, 2015
Before & After Photos: Creative Backsplash

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Black and white can only do so much. Color brings life and passion to any room, whether it be your kitchen, bathroom, living room or dining room. Jeanette Joyce, a DIY homeowner from Powhatan, VA is obsessed with color. After meeting a tile pro in Albuquerque, NM, she realized how much color affects each and every room.

After living in her Virginia home for a year, Jeanette felt a color emptiness in her kitchen.

“The void of color was driving me crazy, so this time, I decided to pursue the project myself,” Jeanette said.

She thought a creative backsplash would do the trick. One week and $75 later, she had a creative, colorful backsplash throughout the kitchen.

Backsplash Before

The Color Obsession is Born

Jeanette’s color obsession began in Albuquerque. The tile pro I mentioned earlier helped her convert her old carpet to tile throughout the house. She then wanted to add a mosaic backsplash. From the pro’s collection, they gathered her discarded tile from old jobs. Together, they created a color scheme of burnt clay and earthy neutrals and added small elements like glass, metallic tiles and stones from outside the front door. 

“The results were gorgeous and became the focal point of the community area,” Jeanette said. “We had no trouble selling the house when we moved. The backsplash was well done and looked very professional.”

If you’re thinking of adding your own backsplash, see Kitchen Backsplash Trends For 2015.

Entire Backsplash

Virginia Backsplash

Cooking six dinners a week in her plain kitchen was driving her silly. Now that she had backsplash experience, it was time to do it herself.

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Jeanette visited a large local tile store and selected a variety of neutrals, making sure to collect various finishes and surface heights. She also purchased some high gloss, bright 4”x4" tiles from Home Depot, along with some sheets of small 1"x1" tiles for accent.

Jeanette first placed the larger tiles in a pillowcase and smashed them with a hammer. Make sure you peek inside to check on the sizes of the broken pieces. Keep your broken tile separated by color. Next, smash your 4"x4" tiles. Remove the small accent pieces from the mesh background. 

Design Tip: It's best to place larger tile pieces behind the cooktop to have less grout lines, making it easier to clean.

Now the fun begins! 

“Think of this as putting together a puzzle with far more flexibility,” Jeanette said.

Lie out piles of broken tile and begin selecting the larger pieces first. She used a bucket of tile adhesive and applied some to the back of the tile, one at a time. Push it into position and clean off the adhesive that squeezes out from under the tile. Now, choose a contrasting color and/or surface, apply adhesive and push into position.

Spacers are not necessary because the design is free-form. When you run into an area where nothing seems to fit right, grab some of those small accent tiles to add interest.  

Tile During Process

Wait a few days to grout. Jeanette used a sanded grout that she mixed herself with water. Since the backsplash is near the sink, cooktop and food prep area, it’s best to seal the grout using a double application. 

That's it!


In under a week, Jeanette created a beautiful, colorful backsplash for less than $75. Now, Jeanette and her husband can marvel at her DIY project every time they prepare dinner.

“I love it and will do it again in my next house.”


The Before Backsplash


Entire Backsplash

Have your own DIY story? If so, please email jacob.hurwith@craftjack to share it with our fans!

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