Belfast Telegraph

Monday 30 May 2016

How to add interest to splashbacks

By Kate Burt

Published 28/05/2012

A friend is re-doing her kitchen and wants to incorporate an interesting splashback to replace the simple square, coloured tiles she has. So I did a bit of hunting around for some off-piste ideas...

Go to press

One unusual idea is using reproduction American pressed-metal ceiling tiles. Great for a utilitarian or pared-down country look, they can be painted and come in different patterns. They are big (61cm square), so not for every space, and small orders such as this may mean a long wait for delivery.

Take the floor

Create interest with floor rather than wall tiles. Try's new wood-effect, plank-shaped ceramic tiles, staggered horizontally, for a sleek 1970s look, or conjure up an old-school European apartment block: Fired Earth's geometric Evora are beautiful. (These thicker tiles will need edging.)

Mix it up

Mis-matching tiles give an interesting effect (and cheap, via discount/ends buckets). Create a patchwork using different sizes, types and textures – either in one colour (different shades) or many. Dark grouting will hide splatters; all those layers will be testing enough to clean without adding a light touch here.

Panel show

Give traditional tongue-and-groove wood panelling a twist by fixing it horizontally. Or use mosaic parquet. Find reclaimed parquet at

On the download

Coloured acrylic or glass is popular in contemporary contexts, and will even digitally print the image of your choice on to it. (Just do not be tempted by their meerkat design.) For a softer, yet still colourful effect, try the laminates at or

Find Kate's blog on affordable interiors at

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