A Well Coordinated Backsplash
It’s amazing how such a small space can set the tone of an entire room. Yes, we can’t stress it enough. A well-coordinated backsplash can be a part of your overall design statement or give dull or gloomy looking kitchens a much-needed make-over. However, we must not lose sight of the structure’s functionality. Pretty is great, but what good is eye candy if capabilities are limited?
In a nutshell, a backsplash provides easy to clean surfaces while also protecting the walls from grease stains. Coming up with a design that harmonizes with the rest of the kitchen design is fun but it can get complicated when it comes to dealing with corners, finishing options, and electrical outlets.
With metal strips, specially shaped end tiles, or decorative trims; the first two snags are easy to address. Outlets and switches are a different matter though. You can’t get rid of these completely as it will render the kitchen counter almost entirely useless and not giving it much thought will potentially ruin the backsplash you spent hours designing. Too many times we’ve seen a stylish backsplash spoilt by electrical outlets sticking out. What’s sad about is that there are simple solutions to this equally simple problem. Like borrowing approaches from a magician’s bag of tricks, the main idea here is to hide and blend.
Our infographic on “Outlets and Switches” should provide enough details to get your plans into action but below are extra tips to help smooth out your strategy.
1. Playing by the “hide and blend” rule:
The first method to consider is to tuck outlets under kitchen cabinets or to keep them hidden inside compartments/cupboards. This is a very straightforward approach and it does look neat and practical. However, each time you plug a kitchen appliance, cords will be visible and ruin the view. This is not an acceptable solution for many. For a less obtrusive and less messy method, place the outlets at a lower position.
2. Flip the orientation of the outlet:
This is quite a helpful trick, particularly if you are working with subway tiles. If you mount the cover plates to go with the flow of the tiles, you solved half the problem. The other half is to get cover plating that will match the color or texture of the backsplash tiles.
3. If you can’t beat them, then put them to good use.
For example, a white cover plate can blend seamlessly in a white ceramic/porcelain backsplash and fortunately, like tiles, outlet cover plates come in various colors and finishes nowadays.
4. Visit the nearest DIY shop:
Look around for metal finishes to match a metal or glass tile backsplash. I was browsing through an online shop the other day and was pleased to find cover plates in finishes such as nickel, oil rubbed bronze, and even wood! Truly, the only limit to home décor and design is imagination.
5. Streamline the counter and group electrical outlets together:
Figure out which area is mostly used for food preparation and place the outlets there. You might also discover that large multiple configuration outlets can also be incorporated with the design.
6. Spectacular Backsplash
As long as you keep the “hide or blend” rule in mind, your final backsplash will be as spectacular as those you see on home design magazines. On a final note, also remember that safety should come first. Before dabbling with the outlets, make sure that power is switched off and if any rewiring is required, please contact the services of a trained professional.