White Subway Tile Backsplash
Even though we use our kitchen every single day, the space certainly hasn’t gotten much love since we moved in back at the end of August.
Here’s what it looked like on our closing day….
And here’s what it looked like after we painted, re-did the floors, and installed a new kitchen faucet…
The kitchen continued to look very much like this for our first 2 months of homeownership. It wasn’t bad, but it certainly could use some personality & attention. So a few weeks ago, we decided to add some interest to this space with backsplash!
Now, we fully intended to do this project ourselves. I learned a lot when Bridget tackled her own backsplash, and Finn & I chatted about taking on this DIY head first. But then we started looking at our calendar…and fitting in a project like this into our already jampacked holiday schedule just didn’t make sense. Why stress ourselves out over this project, when we already had 100+ other things on our new homeowner to-do list? So instead of DIY’ing the backsplash, we hired a pro to get the job done right (& quickly!)
Unsure of who exactly to hire, I turned to Porch.com which is a free home network that connects homeowners to quality professionals in their area. Bridget & I have worked with Porch in the past, but had never hired any of their pros for a project. After the launch of their new Porch Guarantee program, I felt confident that one of their professionals would be right for the backsplash project. The program guarantees the quality of work for Porch professionals who have been pre-screened and passed multiple background checks. And the best part? If you’re not completely happy with the project, Porch will cover the original cost of the job up to $1000. So it was a no-brainer hiring a Porch pro for our kitchen project.
After perusing the variety of contractors in my area, and reading many reviews, I finally settled on this pro. He came to our home, checked out our kitchen, gave me a quote, and right then and there we put a date on the calendar to get the project done. Seriously..it was that easy.
So I had the pro & the project date, but I still needed an exact gameplan for the space. Because our kitchen is pretty dark…walnut cabinets, dark wood floors, and black granite…I knew I wanted a backsplash that would really brighten things up in the space. So WHITE was the way to go! But what kind of white tile did I want?
I headed to Pinterest and started pinning kitchens that I admired. Then after about 20 minutes of gawking & drooling over amazing kitchens, I looked for a common thread between all of my favorites. And what did I like? Subway tile. Classic white subway tile.
Honestly the answer kinda surprised me. I thought I would have been up for a more complicated pattern or at least something with marble…but I actually prefer the classic and clean look of a white subway tile. So I found this tile on BuildDirect, measured my space, and ordered it with complete confidence. A couple of weeks later, and it was install day!
My Porch pro came, secured the area, and got to work.
It took him about a day to get everything installed and up on the wall, and then the next morning he came back to grout it. I couldn’t believe how our kitchen transformed in less than 24 hours!
I have to admit, while I love a good DIY project it was definitely nice to have someone else take the reins for this project. My contractor did an amazing job, and I felt confident in his abilities every step of the way. Now I’m not saying the do-it-yourself projects are ever gonna stop around here, but sometimes it’s nice to hire a job out so you can focus on other tasks.
I went back and forth on the grout color, but ultimately decided to go with a light gray. I like that you can make out the individual tiles, but it’s not as severe as a black grout line. I’m really happy with the color.
I was also unsure about how to handle the edges. After chatting with my Porch pro, we both decided that doing a bullnose edge on the right side was the best call.
Now let’s look at some before & afters in this space.
My contractor even took out the phone jack on the wall for us, since we don’t have a home phone line. Less outlets = prettier backsplash.
I’m absolutely loving the new look. It’s brighter, cleaner, and just has a classic kitchen feel that I adore. The day after it was installed Finn made his famous lasagna for us, and we didn’t even worry about any sauce getting on the tile. Looks great & it’s functional…gotta love kitchen upgrades.
KITCHEN TO-DO LIST:
Stain Floors Paint Walls
Upgrade Kitchen Faucet Install Backsplash Hang new Kitchen Pendants
- Add Window Treatment
Add Kitchen Rug
- Find lighter kitchen stools (the brown leather get lost in all of the dark wood…)
- Dream To-Do: Swap out countertops for something lighter (someday…..)
P.S. I’m guessing you noticed the new kitchen pendants in that last photo. To say I’m obsessed would be an understatement! More details on those beauties next week!
[Disclaimer: I teamed up with Porch.com and BuildDirect to bring you this post. All opinions & photography are my own and are not influenced by Porch.com or BuildDirect. Thank you for supporting the brands that support this blog.]
I’m Casey Finn, the voice behind The DIY Playbook. I’m married to Finn & mom to Rory and Ellis. Together we’re creating our dream home in Chicago, one DIY project at a time.