Temporary Backsplash Ideas That Look Nice

jimyyzFebruary 3, 2010

My 2 year home renovations are being done according to a mandate dictated by budget and level of priority. By necessity this years budget has been set allocated to a new roof : (

Last year I installed all new hardwood floors stained dark walnut and this includes the kitchen and an above fridge cabinet (not shown on picture)

Though I wasn't planning to do any more kitchen renovations this year the faucet began to leak so I decided to replace it. (It was ugly so it was a welcome excuse). And, as things usually go, once i had the faucet out I decided that I had to replace the ugly scratched cast steel white sink that I couldn't stand to look at and didn't want to look at everyday for another 2 years.

The 2 year plan for the kitchen is to change the counter, backsplash and add an island.

Since the sink and faucet were out i went ahead and removed the orange mexican tile backsplash which didn't match the new color scheme and decor. I did consider painting the backsplash but seeing that they would have been removed at some point anyway i bit the bullet and removed them. I'm glad i did because i now see that it was the backsplash that was giving me far more trouble then the counter and I'll be okay living with the existing counter for a year or 2.

So the question is what do I do with the backsplash? Obviously I don't want/can't install tiles because I have to wait for the new counter to go in first. I need something that will look nice, inexpensive, and can go up just temporary. The wall is too battered to go the obvious paint route.

I searched the web for inexpensive backsplash ideas. So far I've only been able to come up with removable washable wallpaper, pegboard cut to size and painted, or a sheet of stainless steel.

Does anyone have any other suggestions, perhaps something they've done themselves or seen that looked very nice?

Below is a pic.

Much thanks : )

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Pegboard? You mean beadboard?

You could also do sheet cork (super easy) over foam core or sheet foam. Then pin up some notes, kids' artwork, photos.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2010 at 11:10AM
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people have used tin ceiling tiles. don't know how economical, but nice look, and could be easily removed.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2010 at 11:25AM
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cork isn't washable so it probably wouldn't look very good as stains and splatters accumulated. cork is beautiful otherwise

    Bookmark   February 3, 2010 at 9:47PM
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Wall paper! It "can" be cheap if you can find some on sale, eBay, tag sale, or Habitat For Humanity Restore. Or even at regular price, a roll or two wouldn't break the bank. It's 55 square feet to the roll. I saw some jewel colors in a Harlequin design that would work just fine for a back splash. there are many papers that would do. I'll be papering mine. These vinyl papers are strippable and they scrub up easily. When you're ready to move on, strip the vinyl face off, wet the backing and peel or wash off. You're back to the wall you had before.

    Bookmark   February 3, 2010 at 9:57PM
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A scrubbable paint is super cheap and you can go with something dramatic since it's a temporary commitment.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2010 at 8:01AM
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Even though the wall is too battered to paint the way it is now, you may be able to DIY a fix pretty cheaply by skim coating the backsplash area with a thin coat of joint compound (or even several coats in the worst areas). There is a joint compound that spreads on pink-colored while it's wet and dries to white. I used it to skim my son's bathroom after wallpaper removal, and it's so easy, even for a first time user like me. The stuff just spreads with a flexible wide putty knife, and is so soft to sand after it's dry. With a gallon of joint compound, a quart of primer (be SURE to prime raw joint compound!), and a quart of paint, you could likely do the whole thing for about $50. It might give you the chance to try out several backsplash colors while you save up for tile.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2010 at 8:15AM
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stained plywood? I've seen people use it as flooring and I always liked the look.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2010 at 8:42AM
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I also vote joint compound and paint. If you wallpaper then you still have to use the joint compound to fix the wall or the paper will look sloppy. A painter can do this for you if you don't think you can do it yourself or your unhappy with your own work.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2010 at 9:02AM
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Ohhhhh this is a fun project. Lets get creative...

How about chalk board paint?

This is from cooking light magazine.

I know, I know a pain to clean but you can alway keep the paint handy for touch ups.

How about a wood backsplash?

Instead of beadboard paint a tile pattern on your wood
backsplash. Put the wood up with tiny screws to keep it
up. Meanwhile you can even paint some beautiful pattern or
subtle lines to look like marble or mini tiles.

How about paint and plexiglass?

Paint the wall and cover with a piece of plexi glass so it
is easy to clean. You can do any color.

Faux painted tile?

Or just painted with a paint that is scrubbable From
Lulu Painting

Rulers lined up? Maybe difficult to keep clean but no one
else would have this. From Apartment therapy

Someone mentioned cork already.
This one is lovely. Yes, a bathroom but still lovely.

This is similar to the dry erase on the link below.

My vote is chalk board paint. So much fun!!!!

Here is a link that might be useful: Magnetic Dry Erase board backsplash HGTV

    Bookmark   February 4, 2010 at 9:13AM
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The cheap kind of beadboard sheet paneling - comes in 3/8 or 1/4 inch (forget which) at big box store for about $20? Cut into pieces, cut to fit, light sanding and paint it.

    Bookmark   February 4, 2010 at 9:43AM
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Ikea has some wall panels that come in different colors/designs.

Here is a link that might be useful: Ikea Wall Panels

    Bookmark   February 4, 2010 at 10:53AM
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laura mcleod

I definitely think tin ceiling tiles - you can get them at Home Depot in basic designs or online for a bigger variety. Get a pair of tin snips (which are basically tough scissor) and you are ready to roll - they are flexible and with a little bit of measuring and some brad nails, it would be up in a few hours. I think the shine factor would be great in your kitchen. Good luck!

    Bookmark   February 4, 2010 at 10:04PM
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wow. thanks for all of the replies. there are some wonderful ideas here. i'm not sure which one i will go with but i will post a picture when done.

btw, the cabinets are repainted oak. there was another thread or two about painting oak cabinets which i also posted to. it was a lot of work but the end result is quite good. i only wish my off-white was less bright and more creamy white

thanks again for all of the suggestions.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2010 at 12:55AM
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boxerpups: thanks for all of those different suggestions and pictures. Chalkboard would be great. i also like the plexiglass over paint.

Where did you find the wood backsplash right above the plexiglass photo? It looks interesting I'd like to see a bigger picture if there is one.

    Bookmark   February 5, 2010 at 1:03AM
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Hi jimyyz,

If you click on the picture it gets bigger.
I also have the link below. A blog called


Hope that helps,

    Bookmark   February 5, 2010 at 7:35AM
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