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ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Posted by homebuyer23 (My Page) on
Sun, Oct 13, 13 at 11:07

I can't believe it but I am basically ABB! Though I still need to pick a couple pendants and get window treatments & decorate, etc.
Here's a couple not so great pics of where we are now...hard to look past the paint sample splotches where backsplash will be.

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This photo shows the blue color I have used as an accent on the sides of the mudroom closet, its also in my center hall and in the powder room, its SW Smokey blue which is a good description of it. A little lighter than a true navy. I thought about finding a similar color ceramic tile for BS, but Im thinking that's too much of a commitment to a color for me.
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Of course I am stuck now trying to decide on a backsplash.
I have many samples, and they are a wide range of styles.

I always figured I'd do a marble backsplash, probably this calacutta gold bc it sort of matches the calacutta vagli of my island counter. I still like that choice, but it only comes polished and Im worried its a little too formal for me plus its a lot of white. Plus its expensive. So pretty though and a little dramatic in a good way.

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Then theres the honed Arabascata cararra that I've always loved from the sample, but I worry about it coming out too white, I feel like I need some contrast, was never really going for the all white kitchen, and my paint color, Revere Pewter came out lighter than I was hoping. I still love this sample, and the fact that its honed and in this straight pattern I think makes it a little less formal and updated and interesting without being too trendy. And the sample shows a good deal of contrast which I like, but tile stores constantly remind me that you can never know what you're going to get.

honed cararra photo honedcararra2_zps6af6ae17.jpg

cararra2 photo kitchencararra2_zps6b227bdb.jpg
Then there is this glass tile by Hirsch glass that I really fell in deep like/almost love with! I think has the perfect colors in it, enough to provide some needed contrast, and a nice mix of greys and browns. I also think it could look cool vertically?. Family members tend to choose this one when I ask opinions. Cons are I worry about so much of a small pattern looking busy and it feeling very dated to me sooner than other choices might. Also, under my UCL this tile looks kind of green. Also it may be too contemporary with my beaded inset cabinets. And my GC mentioned glass being harder to install and at this point I cannot deal with any more mess ups or upcharges.
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Hirsch Glass mosaic photo kitchenhirschglass_zpsd87cc280.jpg

Finally, yesterday I found some ceramic tile that I really like. The one board has a mix of all my colors, with white diamonds, a bluish gray mosaic strip, and a taupey field tile that can also come in a subway. I never really thought about doing a mixture and I think this mix is a little too traditional for me. (In my mockup I obviously have too many of the accent tiles). But I am wondering if theres some mixture of these tiles I could use.

I also really like the mockup of just all the taupe subways. I think it provides some needed contrast, and is easy on the eye. Its more affordable than the marble or glass and likely easier to care for. Last night I thought, yeah that's it...but now I worry its a little boring?

Horus Art design board photo horusboard_zps1f6b4af6.jpg

Horus Board design idea photo kitchenhoruscracklesquare_zpscf30341b.jpg

picture I found of the ceramic subway alone
Horus Art ceramic subway photo horuscrackleecru_zpsfd76b9d9.jpg

Horus subway in Ecru photo kitchenhoruscrackle_zpsac1e45d7.jpg

Deep sincere appreciation if you have read all of this & can provide any opinon/insight!! Cannot wait to have this final heavy decision off my chest & just move on & finally enjoy this space!


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

It looks gorgeous! I think that last subway tile is my favorite for your space. It is simple and elegant but doesn't distract from the beauty of the other elements in your kitchen. Enjoy.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Another vote for the subway tiles. Great color! Perfect with your color
scheme.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

The colors are so off it's hard to tell how that will play out. But I like the simple subways in the last photo. It seems to flow nicely with your kitchen style. I like the soft golden paint color with the calacatta gold type island, maybe lighter than in the photo. Warms things up and balances the grays. Maybe the taupe is similar in color to that.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I vote subway too. As cluch said, simple & elegant & doesn't distract from the other beautiful things going on in there. Can't wait to see the final show! Beautiful job!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I like the colors of that mixed tile best, but don't care for the traditional pattern. The subways look great, but it sounds like you're ready for a little more interest. How 'bout taking out the middle diamond center on the light field tiles and repeating the darker field tiles just under the cabinets and the top of the window?


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I like the plain subway the best as well. Good luck!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I vote for the Hirsh glass...adds interest and the colors are perfect.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I also vote for Hirsch glass. :) Subway tile would be a nice second.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I like the glass tiles- can you get them in a larger size? So still have variation but not as much busyness.

Otherwise I like the taupe subways.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Let's get you out of the ABB club. I like both the subway and the H Glass - try running it the other direction (90 degrees so they run up and down instead of across) - I have seen that and am liking the idea...


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I like the Hirsh glass. I think it complements your cabinets and counters best. Plus, it's just pretty!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

The last pic is my favorite! The one from the inspiration photo. I think its perfect.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I like the subway best too.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Another vote for the simplicity of the subways. The color looks rich and soothing. It will not be a boring room by any stretch of the imagination. Don't give in to the impulse to make every individual item "interesting." Someone's gotta sing harmony!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I have to weigh in for the hirsch, although the subway would by no means be a bad choice! In a very similar kitchen I have picked out a subway for myself, so I don't know why I am voting otherwise. I just thought the colors were so perfect that they would be gorgeous with your cabinets and counters.
What is that perimeter countertop? I have picked out very similar finishes for my perimeter so I was curious what it was.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Thanks everyone so far!

Surprised no one picked the marbles. I do think the lighting is off with them.

kksmama, you may be on to something. I am going to work on trying to design something else with those ceramic tiles....

Also glad to hear some votes for the glass. My dh likes that the most, though the mockup of it makes him weary.

I usually end up playing it safe, so my gut tells me I'm going to end up with the subways. But I'm glad to hear most of you think thatd be one of the best choices anyway!

Keep the opinions coming though!

A2gemini... I really like the idea of running the glass tile vertically. I thought of it right away but its one of those things I think I'd never have the nerve to actually do!

JessHS, the Hirsch glass does come in a larger size, but in the store I wasn't crazy about it, the pieces varied a LOt and so it looked really extra busy to me. I was shocked since I figured the larger tiles would look less busy.

swfr,, the perimeter counters are Silestone Gray Expo.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I initially liked the second sample that was honed because it is honed and has a subtle mix of colors. My second choice would be the subway tiles, but the shine of the tiles on the board seems distracting. Perhaps it is simply reflecting light in a way that the tiled backsplash would not. When I went back to look at my initial first choice, I started to question myself. The cabinet color seems off when I compare that mock-up with the earlier photographs in your post. Since this could be distortion in the photograph, it would be helpful to see the sample board against the counter and the cabinets under the lighting of the room.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Beautiful kitchen! And I can understand your dilemma, because you have several very nice choices! I like almost all (except the ceramic with diamonds - too busy; and I think the using the glass tiles vertically would be too contemporary for your style). I do like the marbles, but can't really tell the color from the monitor. What did you use for your perimeter counter? It coordinates very nicely! And, do you by any chance have a better picture of your "command center"/desk in the adjoining closet area? It looks like what I am thinking of doing? You did an amazing job with everything!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I read your introduction to this thread but not the other post. I don't like the marble tile with your cabinets. Your counter though is beautiful.

The glass Hirsh is perfectly colored. Then you showed the ceramic and you are right it is too busy, but the concept of the darker ceramic in one color is nice. I love ceramic glazes and have seen some stunning examples.

The last picture of your mockups is the one I like best regardless of the materials. I like the simplicity (personal preference) and I like the deeper shade for contrast.

I linked a reveal from last spring by Phylhl, I love the shade of her tiles in her space. The variegation adds just a bit of interest from all one color, without being a mix of colors.

Here is a link that might be useful: Phylhl's kitchen reveal


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Enduring, that is a lovely reveal, thanks for linking it!
Homebuyer, I'd like to see what it looks like to have a couple rows of horizontal tiles at the bottom, then some diagonal rows, and then horizontal again. Maybe in complementary shades, maybe all one shade. I'd suggest that getting the color(s) right to tie in the warmth of the wood island and coolness of the marble is priority 1, and priority 2 is getting the pattern right to add interest but not drama/busyness. But perhaps you have another "mission statement" for your backsplash?

Here is a link that might be useful: sweeby test


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I would do marble because it would look best with your perimeter counter and tie in to the beautiful island. I love the second one - can you order a couple square feet of the current stock to make sure it works for you? Our tile shop suggested doing that with any marble (of course I couldn't wait that long and didn't do it).

The Hirsch glass is beautiful, but I would have the same concerns you do. I don't really like it with the style of your kitchen either.

I think you're getting so many votes for the taupe subway because the mockup looks the best. It also looks great in the photo with the white countertop, but I would worry about it with your perimeter countertop (which you don't see much in the mockups). If your perimeter was marble or very dark or very light, that would probably get my vote.

Another thought is to use the marble or a light-colored tile with a grout color to match the counter.

I wouldn't worry too much about bringing in the smokey blue with the backsplash because there are lots of other ways to do that (window treatments or accessories).

Good luck!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I think that's a great point about the subway color with the countertop. I hadn't considered that.
And if the color is right, I do think the marble would look great. But I'm sticking with the hirsch for the color. With the right grout color I don't think it would be too busy.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I just remembered this picture I posted when you were looking for a countertop. I wouldn't rule out polished marble if the tile is right.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I remember your discussion of your dining room fireplace and that you like the warmth of organic elements, which you've used in the stained island and baskets. I think you're at the crossroads where you can do a classic, cool white kitchen with subways or marble BS or you can add a touch of the "natural" with the organic colors in the Hirsch glass. I like the warm brown in the Hirsch to tie the perimeter and island together, though that particular tile could be too busy.

What type of pendants are you considering? Maybe the answer is somewhere in that decision!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Can't thank you all enough for taking the time to reply.

Mayflowers sweet of you to remember the discussion from a while ago. You are right I do crave warmth and organic elements, although my heart was won over by the white beaded inset cabinets in all the inspiration pics I flagged when I first started out. I love the white cabinets. What I really want to end up with is a white cabinet kitchen that feels warm inviting and natural while still being fresh and modern...though not necessarily contemporary or trendy. Does that make any sense?!

Mpagmom thanks for reposting that pic and remembering! You and the picture you posted had a lot to do with me ending up with the gray silestone and assuming I'd go with a Calcutta backsplash. I love the backsplash in that pic. I am just nervous I wil not get as nice of a lot, I really don't want it to end up all white! Plus it's the most expensive, plus no one here yet has picked the Calcutta! But I sure do love the way it looks there and I'm still considering it.

I do love the herringbone in that other kitchen. Not that I want to look for more options, but I do love glazed ceramics and wish I saw more options in my local stores.

Here are some more pics I took today with some daylight hopefully it gives better look at the actual tiles in my house.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Here's another
It goes hirsh glass, polished Calcutta, honed Carrara, Horus art ceramics


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Another w close up of counter, sorry being lazy and downloading 1 at a time.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decid

Admittedly, I'm not crazy about the linear mosaics as I don't care for the type of energy they create. That's a very important consideration when you're choosing. I would look at hand glazed tiles that have that soothing watery effect. It would complement the marble and be enhanced by the solid counter, I think. They have a soothing kind of organic feel to them.

This post was edited by snookums2 on Mon, Oct 14, 13 at 14:49


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I agree with snookums2. In your quiet kitchen (and I mean that in the most complimentary way), the glass tiles are going to be the attention-getter. Do you want to give them that?

I have a friend with a very energetic (red and black) mosaic backsplash. She adores it, so it's a good thing. It's far too busy and noisy for me.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

First off, your kitchen is BEAUTIFUL! You have made wonderful choices so far and i bet if you have a gut feeling about one backsplash, then it will be beautiful too.
But, here's my 2 cents! I love the honed marble for a few reasons - the color really seems to work well with the counter tops and it is a different spin on a traditional material in the shape/layout. it feels very transitional and timeless at the same time. While the glass tiles are beautiful, if it were me, i'd be afraid i would grow tired of it too quickly. I was trying to figure out a way to incorporate both the glass and honed marble in a design (with the glass as an accent of some sort), but maybe sticking to just the marble is best.
Again, no matter what you pick, your kitchen will be gorgeous in the end.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I'm in the camp with the overall look of the subway tile. I second snookums recommendation of a hand glazed tile in the color tones of your perimeter counters. Your photo shop picture kind of replicates that look.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

This is the type of kitchen you'd expect to see a marble backsplash, so I'm also curious why the marble hasn't gotten more votes. Could that be it, it's expected? Has marble gone the way of white subways--people are getting tired of them?


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I didn't vote for the marble because it didn't look as good in the mockup. I think it would look great in reality. I'm definitely not tired of marble nor would I expect it in a backsplash. I think marble is a perennial.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

What does ABB stand for? I can't seem to find it defined on the forum. Duh...


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

All but back splash. Couldn't figure that one out either, lol.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Thanks. I've seen it so many times but no definition!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

The reason I didn't vote for the marble is because it did not look good in the mockups. The cabinets looked far too creamy for the white marble. In the day time pictures of the actual samples they look good. Color and contrast will be the key in my book. Do you want high contrast? The color has to be correct what ever way you go.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

i went back and looked at your actual white cabinets versus the mockup. I think the marble would be a good choice. I still like the the size & pattern of the taupe subway but you could do that same layout in a marble subway.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

The daylight pictures confirm my first impression...definitely honed c.. Personally, I would prefer a larger subway-shaped tile instead of the smaller sample tiles shown. I like the fact that it is honed and the differing but complimentary shades and tones.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I agree with mpagmom - I like the subways in the mock up, but you can't really see the perimeter counters very well. The second set of photos shows the cab color much better and I think the marble would look great! I hear what you are saying, however, about potentially getting a 'lot' of all white.

I'm not a fan of the glass tile. While it is beautful, I think it will be too busy. I know if it were me I may like it initially but tire of it quickly.

Could you take another close up pick that shows more of the subways with the perimeter counter? (And could you share the brand and taupe color please?)

It's gonna be lovely! Can't wait to see it come together!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Do you know what sizes the subway tile comes in? And also can you post a picture with the subway tile and perimeter counter. Your kitchen is very pretty. I am excited to see what you chose and pictures when it is done.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I think the subway just comes in the size I have on the board, 2.5" x 5".
It's by Horus Art, called crystalli and the color is Ecru.
It also comes in a 4" square pillowy shape, the one in my mockup with the white diamonds and accent tiles. And a flatter 5" square shown here in this board.

I only have the one Ecru colored subway tile that's on the board with the big sample of the whites. This is really the best pick can get.

The color is tricky. Id call it a grayish beige def more beige than my counter which is true gray. Do some of you think i should look for a ceramic thats more gray, one that will match the counter more?
I think in my home this one is very similar to my wall color, which to me means it will work nicely sort of like having it just painted but with all the advantages of having it tiled?!. But I think it could work and I love the idea of ceramic just bc it's durable and its less expensive than those marbles, by alot I think! And the tile itself is just really pretty. Just a little concerned on the color, plus its slightly boring but I'd prefer to err on that side than do something too busy.

I am sure the marbles would look good and to me they seem an obvious choice, but I'm concerned with it looking too white and cold. Maybe with a wood/bamboo window shade and wood barstools it would all warm it up enough though? And someday I could paint the room a deeper color.

To me the glass is the perfect balance of color and contrast but I just don't see myself going through with it too scared of the pattern and I think it's just not really right for my somewhat traditional home. I still find myself unable to return the sample to the tile store though!!

Oh my, I'm not getting any closer even with all your great help, I always go round and round. Do I need to keep looking?

Someone asked about my mudroom area too I will post a pic of that too.

Thanks again for all the comments!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Here is my mudroom area, we turned a big pantry closet into this area for coats school bags etc. I sort of miss the storage for big items, like the 20 pack of paper towels I could store in there. But for now I am loving the place to drop everything when we come in.
Across from it is a little cabinet, excuse the mess! I'll have some tile there and a bulletin board for calendar etc eventually.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Here's the messy cabinet in the mudroom....


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Personally, I like gray teamed with creamy colors. Not all grays are cool. I think the sample board (next to the little oven on the counter) looks good next to your counter. Horus tiles are very nice in person and reasonably priced.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

~Do some of you think i should look for a ceramic thats more gray, one that will match the counter more?

I thought the taupe subways were gray at first, and I didn't like the idea of gray counter blending into gray backsplash. That would be too much "embracing the gray" for me. I like gray, but I worry about it being a passing trend, so I would limit it to one surface.

I would show your dining room fireplace, which has a rustic vibe IMO. Most people here don't know it's open to the kitchen.

I mentioned being at the crossroads of going classic or natural. As an example, my sisters have white Shaker cabinets made by the same cabinet maker. Both have black granite countertops. One used all classic touches with an aqua painted island and creamy crackled subway tiles. The other sister used a cherry countertop on her island, natural slate subway tile, and organic styled pendants and pulls. IMO, the classic one looks pretty, but sterile and predictable. That sister has always had a great design sense, but the kitchen feels copied from a magazine. The one with the natural elements looks warm and homey. I feel more of her personality in that kitchen than I do in my other sister's.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I agree not to overdo the counter color by using it on the backsplash as well. It would seem kind of dark, I think. I would prefer to see some contrast there. Something washed out but not so close to the same value.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

May flowers,
Thanks. I hesitate a little to show my fireplace & that side of the room. I struggle with that because the fireplace didn't get finished the way I really wanted it. I had hopes of a soapstone hearth & rustic reclaimed wood mantle. Maybe a big lighter colored wood farmhouse type dining table.
In the end, our budget wore thin & I just finished whitewashing the brick, and painted the exisiting mantle shelf white & keeping the slate hearth. I threw out the brass screen but haven't gotten a new one. We are reusing our old black dining furniture and china cabinet for now (could be for a while!). I had to choose a light paint color (one of my regrets) due to the new open floorplan & dark colors not working in adjacent family room. It gives off a very shabby chic feel, which is not really the style I'm going for, but its sort of what I'm stuck with.

I appreciate your story about your sisters, and agree I'm at a crossroads. I have a really hard time balancing my tastes/style and I have a big fear that in the end that will be very apparent. I flip flop a lot, even my ideabooks on houzz are somewhat all over the place. While the soapstone/wood/brick fireplace is something I'd want, there were also times during my planning that I'd thought about covering up the entire brick fireplace with glass mosaic, or large format porcelain! I think I like & feel most comfortable with warm colors, natural elements. The house before remodel was all warm shades of browns, rusts, olive greens. People often commented that it was very "me".
I got a little sick of my own style & colors though so Ive been trying to bring in more updated colors, while trying hard to keep it warm and not turn it into a magazine look that is cold to me.
Maybe I will post a picture of the fireplace.

Ok Im really rambling & off topic, people are going to get sick of me and this thread ;-)

Btw, Linelle thanks. Do you mean youd use the creamy white tile? Or the whole shebang combo with all the accents?


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Umm, people never get sick of obsessing over kitchens. That's why they are here!

Seeing the new pictures, I would definitely not do the glass or taupe tile. I would want more contrast between the counter and backsplash.

Also, the scale of most of the tiles is smaller than I thought they would be. I'd try to find a larger (3"x6") calacatta tile. Do you have a Tile Shop around you? They have various 3"x6" or 4"x12" marble tiles in polished and satin that would probably match well. They have the stock right there so you can see what it really looks like, too.

If you go for a white ceramic tile, I wouldn't do accents, and I'd do a grout to match the silestone. That would be a nice look and not cost much.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

homebuyer, yes, I'd do the creamy white tile. Although the taupe is a beautiful tile and I think looked best in the mockup, I think it and and the countertop don't really do anything for one another. Is the creamy white also a Horus tile? Does it have any nice trim pieces?

I think you can take a white and gray kitchen and turn it into something that says it's yours.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I was driving along this morning and I thought of a kitchen from a few years back that you should see. The marble on the island is similar to yours, and the island cabinet color is similar to your silestone. It is segbrown's beautiful kitchen, and I will link it below.

Here is a link that might be useful: Segbrown's kitchen


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I really love the Hirsch glass with your perimeter counter--and I'm usually the one to warn people off of busy mosaics. However, I have a few caveats--It is hard to see from the pics how well the tile works with the marble and that is where I think you could get competing busies (even though they aren't adjacent). Not that the marble is so terribly busy, but that type of mosaic doesn't tolerate competition well. If it were just the perimeter counter and the cabs, I would be all over it. But with the whole picture, I'm not as confident.

My other concern with the Hirsch glass is that, as you note, it could be too contemporary for your space. It depends on what you are going for. Your cabinetry has pretty clean lines, so I don't think the style "clashes," but the glass would definitely pull the overall look in a contemporary direction.

Overall, I tend to like the tiles with a bit more color to the ones that are predominantly white.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

What about something like this? It is a crackle glaze pewter subway tile. The cabinetry is painted BM Revere Pewter, which I believe is your wall color. This is an example of the watery effect of a hand glazed tile that snookums referred to.
Also, I went thru the same brick fireplace dilemma that you faced. Ours too is in a family room that is connected to the kitchen. It was previously faux painted in a creamy shade that no longer worked with our white kitchen. We painted the fireplace & hearth Revere Pewter, the mantle white & the walls a darker shade of grey. It turned out much nicer than I thought. I'd be happy to send you pics.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Romy, great suggestion! Love that backsplash. I could stare at it ALL day long!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I like the light pewter tile a lot better with your counter than the ecru subway tile. I think it would go well with your fireplace, too, from what i remember.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Hi everyone,

Romy, thank you, I LOVE that pewter tile, oh my...what is it??
Its probably a $50 Ann Sachs or something...please prove me wrong!

I have still been hopelessly undecided, but as of this morning, I was leaning strongly toward the honed cararra in the 1x3 linear pattern.
phillyfeet actually hit the nail on the head as to why I always gravitate to this one (maybe bc we're both from philly?! assuming you are??!)
-the color really seems to work well with the counter tops and it is a different spin on a traditional material in the shape/layout. it feels very transitional and timeless at the same time-

My main concern with it though is that the color variations that I see in the sample that I love, won't appear when I order 37 sq ft of it! And my next question was going to be if you think I should do a gray grout with that.

However I really like this pewter tile, please tell me more!

Oh, and I found this online, wanted to see what you guys thought, it looks white but they call it glossy gray yet it says it has a low sheen. I'm intrigued by the perimeter of each piece looking a little faded or darker or something, makes it look more organic/natural to me than a traditional solid white arabesque which are beautiful, but to me a little more formal than I'd like, plus I don't want solid white. Think its worth $14 to order a sample, or is it no good?


I


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Oh and romy I'd love to see pics of your fireplace.
Here's mine. I like it a lot, dont love it. Like the basically free transformation. Wish i could put up a new mantle. Wish it has darker wslls next to it. And i even sort of miss the old red brick!
But I think when alls done it will flow well with everything I hope.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I love the fireplace. Very clean looking.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I love it too. Loved it with the bouquet of dried money plant. Your dining room's got a great American rustic feel to it. I don't know how that arabesque shape works in with that. I guess I'm just a purist when it comes to styles! I do like the gray crackle.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I mentioned earlier about knowing which direction you're going with your pendant and selecting backsplash as part of the whole. I see now the dining room light wouldn't work with some of the trendy chrome, crystal, oversized lights, etc. that you often see in white and marble kitchens. Have you given some thought to your pendant? Got any inspiration pics?


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I most often wait to pick the grout until the tile is up. With the carrera I would probably choose a grout that matches the cabinets.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

romy that is beautiful. i could stare at it all day too......


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Homebuyer - Just FYI - if you like the arabesque, do a search on Home Depot's website for "Lantern Tile". It's the tile 1929Spanish used in her kitchen (see picture). Also, Beekeeperswife had an arabesque in her kitchen.

But I do really LOVE that pewter subway tile!

OT - where is your chandelier from that is hanging over the table by the fireplace? I'm looking for something similar.

Thanks!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Homebuyer - Just FYI - if you like the arabesque, do a search on Home Depot's website for "Lantern Tile". It's the tile 1929Spanish used in her kitchen (see picture). Also, Beekeeperswife had an arabesque in her kitchen.

But I do really LOVE that pewter subway tile!

OT - where is your chandelier from that is hanging over the table by the fireplace? I'm looking for something similar.

Thanks!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Love the light gray tile Romy posted! Heaven. Yes, I could look at that allll. day. long too!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

From the first pics I would have said the subway tile, but after seeing your counter better, the marble. But Romy's tile would be the best of all.

Personally, while I like the lantern/arabesque tile in itself, I don't think the shape adds anything in your kitchen.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I found the other picture on Houzz, by Pinney Designs who say the tile is a crackle glazed subway tile from Discover Tile in Boston. I can't find any info on Discover Tile's website.
This picture is a similar tile, Suprema Gloss Brick in Touch of Grey, I think about $15/sq. ft.
I'll post a few other similar ones. There are quite a few companies that make hand glazed crackle tiles & grey tones are so popular.
FireClay, Heath Ceramics, Mexican Handglazed.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

On Houzz, the posted source for the tile is "Mexican Handcrafted".


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

This is by Encore Ceramics in Silver. I am doing this tile for my backsplash. I was planning to do marble in 4x8" or 3x6" tiles but my perimeter counters are marble and I couldn't find a marble that blended well with my marble ie, too white, not white enough, etc. Marble subways would work for you since your perimeters are grey & your walls are Revere Pewter. I like your mockup of the bigger subways, staggered.
I'll post my fireplace pic on your fireplace thread.
BTW, your kitchen is beautiful. You have done a great job. I love your window, your cabinets, your perimeter counter choice & your marble island.
Don't rush your backsplash. I was feeling desperate about finding BS tile (I was being pressured by DH & KD). When I stumbled across mine, I knew it was right.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Fire Clay, Foggy Morning glazed.
Sonoma Tile would also be a good source. What I like about all these tiles is that there is some variation of color. It gives the tile more depth & adds some color.
Another option for marble tile is to find 12x12" tiles that you like and have them cut. Some stone yards stock the 12x12's so you'd have more control over the lot.
Ann Sacks also has a honed marble tile (3x6) called Selene that has a good bit of color. They have some hand glazed tiles that are $15-$20/sq ft.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decid

Ann Sacks Selene Marble 3x6", about $20 sq. ft.
Might be too colorful!

This post was edited by romy718 on Fri, Oct 18, 13 at 17:14


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

This is my friend's backsplash choice, Ann Sack's, handmade, color twilight, grey with a hint of blue, about $13-$15 per sq. ft.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

On Houzz, Ann Sack's Elements or Elementary, 3x6" and 1x3". I believe the color is Wisp.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I love these options!!!! No time right now but will be back....
Thank you!!!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Ok, it's been a while. I went on a search for those Encore tiles romy suggested and received for her own gorgeous kitchen. I found them and wow are they beautiful.
They are over my budget, take a long time to come in, and the lady at the tile store said she didn't really like them with my counter sample I brought. I'm not positive I agreed with her but as beautiful as they are, I'm thinking maybe its true that with my solid color counters the encore tiles are still too solid...?

She was in strong favor of a Calcutta backsplash and found me one in my price range, but at the very top of it, in a 3x6 honed.

Today I went to yet another store where I found 3x6 honed Carrara with a lot of variation in it, which I like.

I'll post some pictures of these, please let me know what you think!!

In this picture the Calcutta is on the left and the Carrara on right. I have way more sample tiles of the Carrara than I do the calcutta.

The Calcutta resembles my island counter closely. However I'm not sure if that's a good thing or not. In a way I wonder if that's too "matchy match".
The other thing about the Calcutta is I don't see much of the warmer gold/brown tones I like to see in Calcutta. It seems pretty gray and white.

I like the veining though and it seems like a nice quality tile.

The Carrara I like bc it has some interesting things going on with most of the tiles. They're all a little different and I see several varying color tones in it which I tend to like. It seems slightly less Formal than the Calcutta and I think I prefer that. It's also less expensive...big plus.

But I wonder of it looks busy? If I'll tire of all the variations? If it is odd to have Cararra on walls with Calcutta on island?
I'll try to post close ups too.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

here is a pic of the kitchen as it is now, we finally installed a pendant/lantern over the island, I think mayflowers was interested in seeing what we used there to get a better feel for my style. We used a smaller knock off of the Hundi Lantern from Pottery barn, we got this from Overstock. I do love it, but thought about posting a new thread to see if its too small...feel free to give opinions!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

No its not too busy. I like the carrara in your post. Frankly from this angle it is difficult to tell the difference between the two. If you like the color of the carrara go with it over the calacatta. As far as if it goes with your island counter I can't say one way or the other, but I think it is very nice with your peripheral countertops.

Not like yours, but here is my marble backsplash that I put up several years ago. I love it for the subtle variety and understated element.
 photo IMG_1593.jpg
 photo IMG_1569.jpg


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Here is one more, closer up. Ignore the yellowy paint sample in background.
Again, cararra on right, Calcutta on left


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

You snuck that post before I got mine posted :)

I like the pendent. I don't think it looks too small. The only think I might have done in that space would been to have a rectangle pendent with more spread of light over the island, since there is only one fixture opening in your ceiling.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

enduring , I've always LOVED your backsplash! I saved it long ago, thanks for posting though, I haven't seen it in a while.

What type of marble is yours? I like how warm it is. What color grout did you use? I like that its darker, wonder if I should do that...?


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I see in your last picture there is more definition with the calacatta, slightly bolder.

My tile was a mosaic in a running bond that I cut apart to do the herringbone on a whim in 2011. I don't know if the product is still available from "The Tile Shop"...yes it still is and it is called Lansdale. I will link the website. I have a local store so it was easy to order and take back what I didn't want when I was done. The tiles are 2x4s on a 12" square sheet. I took the tiles off the backing and washed the tiles to get the glue off. There was some shadowing effect from the mesh when the tiles where wet, but this disappeared once they were dry.

The grout I played around with and ended up with a mixture of white and a gray. I did several tile boards before I grouted. Since this was my first project, there was a bit of a learning curve. But DO A SAMPLE BOARD before you do any grouting!!! If your tiler won't do it, make 'em do it!

Here is a link that might be useful: The Tile Shop Lansdale mosaic


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Either of the marbles will work so you don't need to worry about making a mistake by picking one over the other. They are both gorgeous!

The one on the right (cararra) melds with the color of the counter top more than the cabinets. The one on the left (Calcutta) is more of a contrast with the counter tops but less with the cabinets.

You can use the color of the grout to either make the tiles meld or standout. Use a darker grout with the lighter Calcutta marble so there is less contrast with the counter but a little more with the cabinets. Inversely, a whiter grout to enhance the contrast with the counter but meld more with the cabinets.

With the darker cararra marble, use a darker grout for less contrast with the counter but more with the cabinets or use a lighter grout to add more contrast with the counters but not the cabinets.

In the end, it's all about the balance you want to achieve and how much you want the backsplash to blend in or contrast with the counters and/or cabinets. Again, no right or wrong answer, they will all just be slightly different looks. In one month, two months, six months or a year, you will probably not even notice it at all anymore.

As for myself, we are almost ABB too! My contractor is painting pieces of glass for back splash in our more modern type kitchen. I have painted the area that the glass will be just to see if I liked the effect with my counters, white macaubas vein cut. I am including a photo for fun.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

my bs went up this week. They still have to come back to buff it tomorrow but here's a little look.....
I am really happy with how it turned out, and it really makes a difference to how "done" the kitchen feels.

Now, if I can just pick a window treatment & get rid of the paper shade...Ill be done with major decisions!!! what a long long journey...


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

It looks perfect! I love it with your countertops. I'm not sure if this is the Calacatta or the Carrera. Whichever (I'm guessing Calacatta) , the overall tone looks great with your cabinets. Please post more pics after they finish tomorrow. This is an exciting backsplash day at GW!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Excellent choice! Absolutely beautiful! I can't wait to see the final pics!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Beautiful!!! Can't wait to see more!


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

I love it! (I'm jealous of your bright sunny window!)


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Love it! Which one did you go with? And we need more pics!!! :)


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Your project is really shaping up! A huge upgrade...you worked hard and what a payoff...show more pics when you can...how did the new living room turn out?I like the dark tones of the wood furniture in dining area with darker island and dark accents on the light fixtures- nice "tie-ins" throughout the space that contrast a bit with the white. It's all very tasteful.


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RE: ABB, lots of pics & amateur mockups, please help me decide!

Thanks everyone!

So of course the one I chose is not even one of the original top 5 contenders from the top of this thread.

I chose Hampton Cararra 3x6 satin finish from The Tile Shop.

I was so afraid to go with marble because I really like variation in the tiles and I didn't want to end up with boxes of all white. I found a Tile Shop near me, never knew they existed until GW. I loved that they had so much in stock, and on display. So I was able to take an entire box of the Hampton Cararra home before I decided. Its the one in my post above from Nov. 7, on the right. It had a lot of variation and was a lot less expensive than some of the options I had been considering too, so it was my winner.

Herbflavor, thanks for the compliments & for remembering. You are one of many here who specifically helped me a lot.
Yes the whole project now is done. We love the new use of space, its really working out for the way we live just as I hoped.

The kitchen is done just how I wanted it, though of course theres several decisions I second guess, but overall I love it.
The other 2 rooms which we opened into each other I am just not thrilled with how they look yet because the budget has run out but I really wanted to do more in those rooms. I wish we could get all new furniture and I wanted built ins next to fireplace and new mantle, etc but its not happening for a while. I know we have time.

I hope to do a reveal now soon, but I still need a window treatment on the big kitchen window. We get tons of light so I needed to put a paper shade up and I don't want that in my final pics!!

I might still need one more post for advice on a window treatment...I'm thinking a woven wood shade in a dark tone like the island cabinet. I love the light kitchen, but I really like to ground it with some dark pieces.

Heres a closer up...


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