May 20, 2013

Tile Keeps Your Kitchen Current

Since the kitchen is considered the heart of the home, it's nice to keep it updated. We eat, entertain, and even do office and school work in our kitchens. When you're ready for a remodel, or even a change in appliances and surfaces, you want what you select to be enduring. Flooring is often wood, vinyl, cork, or tile (porcelain, ceramic and stone are the most popular).  Backsplashes are most frequently tile, although beadboard, stainless steel, and even painted finishes are used. We love tile since it's incredibly versatile, comes in a huge array of materials, patterns, colors and you can find or cut nearly every size and shape. The choice to use tile is a good one for flexibility, design freedom, ease of care and customization. 

Large scale tile makes small spaces seem larger.

Using tile is one of the best ways to customize a kitchen and allow for changes later. You can create patterns, add accent tiles, and then pop some out and replace with a different color or material over time.  In a small kitchen, swapping the dated 12" x 12" straight lie ceramic with a safer, larger, 24" x 12 porcelain tile, was easy, budget conscious, and made the room appear larger.  Consider porcelain instead of stone for busy kitchens. It's to care for, and even if you love the look of stone, you can have it since many manufacturers offer stone-looks that eliminate larger grout lines, filling holes, and regular surface sealing.  With rectified tile, you can create tight patterns and minimal grout joints for a very finished, nearly seamless look.
The Arts & Crafts influence backsplash in this kitchen can be changedby popping out the green accent tile and replacing with another materialor color in years to come.

For backsplashes, there are nearly unlimited options that can be combined. Let's say you opt for a 4" x 4" stone backsplash, and decide you want to update in 10 years. You can change some of the tiles for glass, and create a border, a pattern, and make a change in color. For very traditional kitchens, I love to create a custom pattern over the stove or cooktop.  I consider the options the client loves today, and allow for the possibility of changing out some of the decorative tiles over a long period of time, while leaving the field tile in place.  Ten years ago, I designed a backsplash with granite and porcelain tile.  This year, we're popping out some tile and replacing it with metallic tile.   Glass tile is hugely popular now. Some installations are Mid-Century Modern style and will be enduring, and some are highly colored and patterned and may become dated over time. Changing out tiles, especially mosaics, will be easy over time. Recycled glass tiles are less popular, but with environmentally conscious products being more favorable and available, they will likely be enduring for many years.
Glass backsplashes are gorgeous. This one has recycled
tile and a crisp ceramic accent tile.