An Easy and Affordable Backsplash Alternative
Tired of that plain old horizontal section of wall in your kitchen? You know the one between your kitchen cabinets and your counter tops better known as a backsplash, or rather lack there of. Problem is in order to do something about it you've either got to shell out a substantial amount of money to get a professional in to do the job or set a side a significant amount of your time on the weekends luring your friends and family over with food and beverages to help get the job done. Let's be honest, neither of those options sounds like a winner. But there is a new alternative that's both amazingly cheap and comes with a minimal time investment. I'm talking about wallpaper, an easy and affordable backsplash alternative. Now before you laugh and move on to reading something else, hear me out. Wall coverings have come a long way since their inception. There are a million styles on the market these days to suit anyones taste, but there is one in particular that stands out above the rest as being a go to alternative to wall tile. Textured paintable wallpaper is beautiful, durable, affordable and yes, paintable, giving anyone the opportunity to turn a blah kitchen into an oh my kitchen in hardly no time at all.
Before heading off to some of the bigger hardware stores in your area or simply ordering your new roll out backsplash, it's always best to get a precise measurement. Measure both the vertical and horizontal dimensions of the wall surface making sure to give at least a foot or two extra for the area behind your appliances. There's no need to completely cover those areas as no one will ever see it, assuming your appliances are in place. But do give a little extra to hide the break in the paper.
Choosing Your Roll Out Backsplash
As I said there are a million choices, both textured and not. You can by all means go with a wall covering that's already printed with color or a design but this will limit you a bit as I'll explain in a moment. As for style I prefer the look of tile, notice I said look. Once this stuff is up nobody will know the difference if you choose wisely. In our new house we're using a textured paintable wallpaper that resembles the look of french ornate tiles. This paper's embossed and looks beautiful. It would have cost me a fortune in tiles, not to mention finding them somewhere. One roll was enough to do our job, so you can see how this is stacking up to be way more affordable than tile.
Installing the Wallpaper
Most of the quality wall coverings these days come already pasted. All you have to do is wet either the paper or the surface in order to get the wall covering to adhere. It's as simple as that. After applying the water start at one corner applying from the top of your countertops up. This will give you a clean line at the bottom as you'll be trimming the excess off the top. The reason for this is the bottom is almost always visible where as the top is most often covered up visually by the cabinets. Once you've completed the installation it is best to go over the surface of the wall covering with a paint roller to ensure that all areas are adhered well. Likewise, make sure to follow all manufacture's guide lines when installing.
Remember back when I said choosing a wall covering that was printed with color or a design would be limiting, here's why. The idea behind painting your new backsplash is simple. The kitchen is an area where things can get quite dirty depending on how much cooking you do, or how much food your kids throw. Take a good look at the wall behind your stove and you'll know exactly what I'm talking about. There's a reason they call it a backsplash. Granted you can clean the wall covering if you go with something pre painted or printed, but if the wall covering is textured or embossed it's going to be really frustrating. The idea is as the backsplash begins to collect grim, you simply wipe it and repaint as necessary. With this technique you end up with a fresh new kitchen backsplash every time it's painted. It's probably only going to need it once or twice a year depending on how much "splash" it has to put up with. So when purchasing your paint go ahead and buy the gallon to keep some extra on hand for both touch-ups and fresh coats.
With paint the sky's the limit as well so don't be afraid to be artsy. Some people like the look of tin or metal tiles in the kitchen in which case faux painting would obviously work well. Also the great thing is, if you don't like the color or faux technique, all you have to do is repaint. It's such a small space that it will take no time at all!
Now that you've finished installing and painting your new easy and affordable backsplash alternative. Enjoy it and be creative! If you don't like the look of the unfinished edges or didn't do a decent job cutting the top edge, you can get some tiles to trim the areas creating a framed look. Simply buy the matching tiles and adhere them using construction adhesive. However, if you take your time and choose the right wall covering you shouldn't need to do this. Now sit back and enjoy the compliments you'll receive as they splash in from your guest every time they pass by your kitchen, oh, and don't forget to turn off the oven…..
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