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Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Posted by mikewood (My Page) on
Fri, Apr 26, 13 at 17:46

I think we've finally decided on a kitchen backsplash to go with our new granite countertops and appliances. The granite is Stormy Night-very busy!

We'd like to use a light beige ceramic subway tile-the only samples I could get were 4x4 but we're going with 4x8 or 4x12. My 15 year old painted the backsplash the same color as the tile so we could see the color effect overall.

Should we use just the beige ceramic subway tiles? Or add some glass accent tiles?

I couldn't figure out how to post multiple pics in one post so please excuse the multiple posts! The 1st one is without the accent tiles (painted the same color as the subway tile we like).

Thanks!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Here is a pic with the accent tiles on the wall.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

A close up pic of the granite, the beige subway tile, and the accent tile.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

And finally, here's a pic of the granite and the beige subway tile without the glass accent! The installer is coming May 6th so I need to make a decision! Thanks again!


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I like that accent tile. It really adds visual interest by picking up the dark in your granite without adding more "busy-ness.". How does your 15 y.o. vote? Any kid who did that nice painting job should get a say.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

She's a terrific kid! She actually likes the accent tile but thinks it should be a solid line all the way across the backsplash, not just in the broken up fashion like in the pictures. I think a solid line looks great in some kitchens but would be too dark and "heavy" looking in my kitchen!


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I like your accent tile - I am not sure about a solid line - will defer to others.
I used my accent tiles above the cooktop but did put in a mixed media border.
BTW - your counter is absolutely gorgeous!


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Where exactly is the accent time going to go? It looks nice, but is it a smidge too big to go under the molding on that strip of wall?


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Thanks for the responses. I think i've rulled out putting the accent tiles in a solid line all the way across. I wish I could just use them over a cooktop but I have a microwave above the range so that won't work. Am thinking of just putting the accent tiles just as they are in the picture: alternating a single tile with a short row of 5 tiles. Kind of random, I know...

The smaller space under the ledge does make it difficult to use accent tiles.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I am not an accent tile person generally speaking - I almost never like the finished effect. I especially don't like accent strips which always seem to chop the backsplash in pieces.
Having said that the accent tiles you've picked work well color wise so if you use them they should work.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I know you said you ruled out the accent tile in a solid line, but to give you a better idea of how that would look, you could always tape ribbon the same color as the tile across the wall to see how it looks. I think under your switchplates would be a good height. Some people prefer higher, I don't, and I also don't like putting it halfway up as it cuts your wall in half. If you find you like the look of the ribbon, you can play with the height to find what you prefer. Did you ever think about a thinner subway accent tile where you could use two rows of varying colors instead of one dark line? I'll see if I can find a picture of what I'm talking about.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

This picture is close to what I was referring to, but I was thinking two or three lines of trim depending on how wide the tile is. My Mother says that adding trim to a backspash is like putting lipstick on a beautiful woman :-).


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Ruthie51-love your mom's analogy on trim and lipstick! Thanks for the picture-it's pretty. I am afraid to introduce an accent tile with more than one color in it considering how busy my granite is. But I like your idea of taping ribbon to the wall. That's a great way to visualize it!


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Dissenting vote here. I think your stone is busy enough that you need a single-color bs. No second tile strip to draw attention away from the stunning rock. My motto is....when in doubt, simpler is better.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I can understand not wanting to draw attention away from your beautiful countertop. Our counters are dark with very little variation, so we used a subway trim and it does make everything more interesting. Your countertop already provides the interest. Good luck with your decision!


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I wouldn't do your accent tile in a strip but I love your accent tile with your bs tile. I think it would look awesome the way you have it pictured in your first pic and I think your granite is beautiful.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I agree with Breezy. No accent tiles. Your granite is beautiful and has enough going on to provide interest aplenty. A simple backsplash will give a calm place for the eye to rest.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

No accent tile, not in that kitchen (which looks lovely btw).


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Another "no" to accent tiles. They were the first in my kitchen that made it scream "90s!"


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I love the ribbon idea! It gives me a way to see what a solid line of accent tiles looks like. What do you all think?


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I stick by my earlier opinion. No.

It makes the small area very busy and chops up the already small bs area by the sink.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Another vote for no accent tiles.
Could you please take a picture of the beige subway lined up against the backsplash from a distance like your first 2 pictures. Easier for me (us?) to visualize it in the space and see how it coordinates with your counter and cabs rather than the close up of it lying on the counter.
Thanks.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Thanks for all the feedback so far! This backsplash thing is tough!!!

Here is a pic of the beige subway tile leaning against the wall. Thanks!


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Ahh Mike, why so stingy, didn't you have more than one to line up? :>)
Not trying to be a pill, but when I saw them lying on the slab they didn't look like the right shade for your golden granite. Of course it could be my monitor and not translating well in a photo with shadows, but it looks more gray or cool in undertone than the light shades in your granite. Was just hoping to see more for a better representation. However that wasn't your question anyway.

Still think no to the accents; too harsh for the beautiful swirls of color in your granite.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Here's the other samples we have of the beige tile. My husband thinks I am going crazy over this backsplash-he may be right lol!

Our granite isn't really golden-i think the sunlight made it look golden in the earlier picture. It's more of an ashy tan with black, brown, tan, and cream swirls.

Thanks! Kate


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

From what I can see in the picture, the way you have the ribbon placed would mean that you would have cuts (rather than full tile) on either side of the accent tile band ... not so good. You have to allow a bit of space under your bottom row of tile for caulk, and between the tiles for grout, so figure that into your "ribbon" placement. Have you considered just having a few "dots" of accent tiles placed around the backsplash? If the switches and plugs on the splash did not interfer with the placement of the dots, it might give you the little "pop" you're looking for without being too busy. Even just one or two dots along each span of countertop, if properly placed, can give your splash a little bit of interest. But you would have to lay your tiles and dots out as they would be on the splash to see if it would work in your case. If the dots end up getting cut off by the plates and switches, it's better to do without them. Regardless, I would forego any accents on the small area behind the sink altogether.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I don't see it in your pictures, but one thing we noticed about our trim is that it's strongly reflected in our countertop with the lights on or off (see picture). Our countertop is somewhat plain so we love that effect, but that's something to keep in mind when trying to decide about a trim. It seems the general consensus here is no trim...in our case, I'm very glad we went with it as it really enhances our entire kitchen. I know this is a very difficult decision. In my case, I've often found that deep down I actually know what I want, but I find that I need the "approval" of others, so I ask people what their opinion is hoping they'll agree with my vision. And more often than not, I've also found that when I go against my gut feeling and do what others suggest, I'm not happy with my final decision. So, in reality this is what YOU want and not what others think would look better. Everyone's taste is different. I like trim and I'm glad I went with it...what do YOU want, mike?

This post was edited by ruthie51 on Sun, Apr 28, 13 at 7:40


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

In a kitchen that my friend and I did we used accent tiles of about that size that we were able to put on top of the finished tiles. It wasn't in a line, just every few tiles an accent piece. Of course they were pewter (they came in ORB too which would look nice in your kitchen) with a motif on them but the tile guy suggested it as we were freaking out about whether to add them or not and this way she and her DH can take them off if they don't like them. Your granite is so beautiful, good job picking that out, looks good with your cabinets.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Having seen the ribbon I mind it less than I thought I would, probably because of the particular angle with the open space above the sink.
However accent strips also read 'dated' to me generally speaking.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Hi Kate (you're not really Mike, right?). Whether or not accent tiles look dated, I think at least the ribbon effect draws a lot of attention to itself and creates visual clutter, esp. with switches and outlets and bottles on the counter. I'm fine with things on the counter, since a kitchen is a working space and not a showroom. But if you compare photos at 17:32 and 18:57, to me, the one without the ribbon looks so much more spacious, open and clean.

This post was edited by linelle on Sun, Apr 28, 13 at 10:28


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I think my problem with the backsplash is that I tend to be attracted to colorful, dramatic things, such as my granite. So when I look at the beige subway tile, I automatically think boring. But when the tile is viewed with the granite, I think the overall effect will be more than enough, even without an accent strip or random accent tiles. I definitely agree that it looks less cluttered and more spacious without the strip (thanks linelle!). If we had a simple granite, I could go a little wild on the backsplash (ruthie51-I like your accent strip with your granite!).

So the beige tiles are already ordered and we've got the installation estimate for them. This way, I won't have to worry about ordering the accent tiles, calling the installer to tell him of the change in plans and get a new install estimate, or worry about odd or difficult cuts. Win win for everyone! Plus my husband will be pleased that this is getting done!

Thanks for all the feedback. It's much appreciated!

Kate


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I think it will be great. Less is more with that beautiful granite. Don't want to overdo the jewelry.
Please post back here when installed. When do you think you'll be done?


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

It will be installed May 6th. Can't wait!


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Yay Kate! I think you made the right decision. Can't wait to see a photo when it's all done.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Actually, I would ditch the beige and do nothing but the "accent" tile as the entire backsplash. It's dramatic and deep and what the granite deserves. It's also much more of a uniform background when used in mass than it is as a "feature" strip. Just make sure to use under cabinet lighting.

The beige IS boring.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

At almost $60 per square foot for the accent tiles, using it for the entire backsplash won't happen (unless I win the lottery)!! Also even though we have under cabinet lighting, we don't get a lot of natural light in the kitchen so it would be really dark and dreary to use the accent tile for the entire backsplash. In the right kitchen, though, it would be gorgeous!


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I would NOT use the accent tile. We had an accent tile picked out, but decided against it. I'm so glad we didn't use it. You want people to notice your AMAZING granite over the backsplash, at least we did. Plus I was worried that I would eventually get tired of the accent tile. I think simple is the way to go with such busy granite, unless you can do something over your cooktop.


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I also had an accent tile to go with my simple subways. As soon as the tile guy put it up, I saw how it detracted from my counters which have color and movement. I was a crazy person for a few days because DH liked it an I felt it ruined my whole kitchen.I finally and happily prevailed.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I think the beige tiles with your gorgeous granite will look great! I liked it without the accent tiles or with the accent tiles ONLY installed in a random way. I can't wait to see pictures!


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

My granite is similar in tone and about as busy. We didn't want the backsplash to fight with the granite, so we went with glass in a pretty neutral color. We accented by putting the same tile, matte finish, randomly placed in the glossy glass, at a density of about 1/8th. I got it for about $12.60/sq ft, through a dealer. Bedrosians had it on sale at the time for about $14.something. Matte is about $1 more. Comes in many colors, and several sizes (mine are ~2"x8" on a web)

Here is a link that might be useful: Manhattan glass, Bedrosians

This post was edited by attofarad on Mon, Apr 29, 13 at 0:09


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Here is another shot, in the context of our off-white cabinets. This is the color of everything except the bar, desk, and island, which are cherry stained nearly black. Looks better in person.

This post was edited by attofarad on Mon, Apr 29, 13 at 0:13


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I think you made a smart decision to go without accent tiles and have the focus on your gorgeous granite. Pls post when the backsplash is installed.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

It's done! We're out of the ABB club and moving on to floors and wall paint! Thanks to everyone who commented/advised etc...I truly appreciate all the feedback. Happy kitchen renos to everyone! Kate


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

And another pic of the new backsplash


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Congratulations on joining the ABB alumni club! Your BS and kitchen look sharp!
Can't wait to the final reveal and we want lots of pictures!


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I think it looks great! Your granite is beautiful.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Very nice! Your photos have helped me to make a decision on my backsplash. Thank you!


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

I love the backsplash with your granite counters and your cabinets. Now your gorgeous granite is the star!

What does ABB club mean? I think one B is for backsplash.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Perfect! Great backdrop for that amazing granite. You said your husband thought your were going crazy over the BS. Is he happy you did? :>) Your 15 year old approve? Thanks for shairing.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

ABB is all but backsplash. :)

I guess technically we were not ABB since we still have flooring and paint but it felt like the backsplash was a big hold up for a long time!

DH is pleased that the backsplash is done-so is our 15 year old!
They both think it turned out really well. DH is going to make me a couple of trivets using that pretty accent tile I found but decided not to use on the backsplash so I will still get to look at it every day!

Blondiesc-glad to be of help in your backsplash quest. Isn't gardenweb great?!?


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Thank you for letting me know what ABB means as I kept seeing it and finally got the courage to ask.

I do love your backsplash, your counters, your backsplash and the overall way everything is coming together beautifully.


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RE: Accent tiles in backsplash....or not?

Turned out beautiful. Congratulations. I think tiles are the hardest decision! Backsplash and shower tiles have driven me crazy with my renovation!


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