Is your kitchen decor not up to par with the rest of your home?
Are you on a tight budget right now?
Not a problem – you don’t have to wait to win the lottery or get a raise to improve your kitchen’s aesthetics. You just have to get a little crafty!
A mosaic tile backsplash is a simple DIY decor trick you can take on over the course of one weekend.
Here’s everything you need to know about the process.
1. Pick Your Tile
Before you go into handyman mode, put your interior decorating cap on.
Make note of the colors and textures that are consistent throughout each room of the house. Or, notice if there isn’t much consistency at all.
Either way, a mosaic tile backsplash can bring everything together. Use it to compliment the style you already have, or to create a foundation for future projects.
Below are some things to consider as you weigh all your options.
Color is all around your home.
Even if it’s not a mix of bold, in-your-face tones, there are at least different shades of neutrals. Consider whether you want your mosaic tile backsplash to blend in or to add some contrast.
You can choose a mosaic set that is soft and subtle. These tiles will be lightly colored, without much business.
Others will be brighter. These tiles are meant to stand out and add some life to a kitchen.
As much as color plays into interior decorating, it’s not everything.
At the end of the day, any DIY project for your kitchen should be about how you want the space to feel.
You may opt for a kitchen that is neat, calm and collected. This is a classic, modern space where everything has a place and the counters are always clean.
Maybe you want a bit of a busier kitchen instead. This is one that looks lived-in. The decor is warm and inviting – like a rustic country kitchen or a cozy shabby chic environment.
Wear and Tear
Whatever design direction you choose, always consider upkeep before buying a mosaic tile backsplash set.
Some tiles will stand the test of time better than others. They are durable against food splashes – which are bound to happen – and don’t need much cleaning.
Others will need to be wiped down frequently and carefully.
Think about these conditions when you’re making the final choice.
2. Clean the Kitchen
Once you’ve bought your mosaic tile backsplash and all the mounting materials, it’s time to get to work.
The first thing you want to do is turn your kitchen into a workspace. This means you need to remove all appliances from the countertops. Move any storage containers or spice racks you keep on the counters as well.
You may opt to disconnect your stove and fridge for even more working room. Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for this step.
Don’t forget to turn your outlets off in the kitchen, too. Then, wipe down your space and set everything up for your DIY project.
Apply painter’s tape to the edges of the walls where they meet cabinets and counters. Lay cardboard, or some other projective material, on top of your counters. This keeps debris from being an issue during clean up.
3. Prep the Wall
As you’re going through the cleaning process, take the time to clean your walls.
Look for any scratches on the paint or stains that may have appeared. Cleaning helps ensure your adhesive layer for the mosaic tile backsplash works as best as possible.
Take a wet sponge with a light cleaning liquid and wipe the walls.
Wait for everything to completely dry before taking on the next step.
4. Mount Your Mosaic Tile Backsplash
While the walls are drying, you can start prepping your mounting material.
Depending on the kind of mosaic tile backsplash you buy, you’ll be using Thinset or roll-out adhesive fabric.
Before you do anything with thinset, understand it works best in small sections.
You don’t want to cover your whole kitchen then start to apply the tiles. Instead, apply the adhesive and immediately follow with tiles until each section of your wall is complete.
Start by mixing the adhesive in a bucket. When you get a smooth consistency, paint the thinset on the wall. Use a fanning motion to make everything as even as you can.
Then, remove excess thinset. This is called “combing.” You will use the edge of the thinset applying tool to comb through your section, then smooth it down again.
The thinset is now ready for your mosaic tile backsplash.
Apply the sheets starting from the center of a section and working your way out. Hold them in place for a few seconds on each edge as you’re mounting. This ensures the adhesive latches on well.
Repeat the thinset and tile application process until the wall is covered.
Adhesive fabric is less time-consuming than a thinset mix.
Instead of mixing, coating, and combing, you just have to adhere the fabric to the wall!
Start by rolling out the fabric in sections against the wall.
Move with care, as it will start to attach right away and you don’t want any air bubble to pop up. Smooth each section down to double check for bubbles.
Then remove the plastic coating on the fabric and begin to apply your mosaic tile backsplash. Some adhesive fabrics even come with tile spacers to help you make sure everything is even.
Repeat as needed to cover the desired space.
5. Wait and Clean
After applying all the tiles, be patient.
Give everything time to set before you bring your appliances back into the kitchen.
At a minimum, wait a few hours. Maybe even take this step into the following day, just to be safe.
When you think the tile has set in, look over your final product. Wipe down the backsplash and keep your eye out for edges that may not have adhered all the way.
Fix whatever minor issues appear as needed.
Then, take a step back and enjoy your beautiful kitchen!
DIY Decor Throughout the House
The one thing no one tells you about home-decorating DIY projects is how addicting they can be!
The process is fun, stress-relieving, and incredibly rewarding. You may find yourself wanting to take on every room in the house after you finish working on your kitchen.
Not sure where to start, though? Click here for more tile design ides!