It all starts with the alignment of your upper and lower cabinets. Hopefully they are lined up perfectly, as they are above, where the splash can run from the top edge of the countertop to the underside edge of the upper cabinet.
Backsplashes placed near the cooking range typically go all the way up to the bottom end of the overhead cabinets. Backsplashes near the sink can be made short. Having this on the side wall of the kitchen counter may not always cause an aesthetic problem to the overall look-and-feel of the kitchen.
No matter how big or small, whether you are going up or down or what type of tile you are using, where you place the first tiles of a backsplash is always at the same place. The magic spot is the base of the backsplash along the countertop edge or lip if it goes up the back of the wall in the center of the countertop.
The bottom of the upper cabinets, the bottom of a window, or the range hood are common lines to use as a guide for where to end your backsplash. Too many lines can make the room feel disjointed; continuing existing lines keeps the look unified and clean.
Backsplash height should be all the way from the Countertop to the bottom of upper cabinets. I strongly suggest designing it like this, otherwise, it will look outdated like on the bottom image. Also, it protects water spillage much better if it is made all the way up to upper cabinets.
A standard backsplash is typically 4 inches high from the countertop. A full backsplash comes as high as you need, most homeowners have it all the way up to the height of the kitchen cabinets.
Leave the Edge Alone
Complete the edge by applying a piece of painter's tape to the wall next to the tiles. Squeeze a thin line of caulk down the outside edge of the tiles where they meet the wall. This blends the tiles into the wall, giving it a clean, finished look.
Step 1: Lay Out Your Backsplash Tile Design
If you are doing a straight wall—like my laundry nook, it's best to start at the center and work your way outward. However, if you are doing a corner, it's better to start in the corner and work your way out.
Space For Your Kitchen Backsplash
Measurements for a typical backsplash are--16 to 18 inches--between the countertop and kitchen cabinets.
If you're in a kitchen, and you're doing the countertop-to-upper-cabinet-18”-high-backsplash, it's best not to wrap that around to the side wall if you don't need to. As I always say... Transitioning materials on an inside corner is always best.
You need a backsplash behind the stove to protect from grease and cooking splatter that could damage the surface behind the stove. The backsplash should be made of durable, nonabsorbent, and easy to clean material that will not discolor easily.
Preparing your kitchen for tiling
Next, place a tile against the lowest point of the base you're working to and draw a level line. Fix a baton along this line to hold your first row of tiles, and draw a vertical line at one end of the wall to allow you to check that your tiles are in line as you tile up the wall.
Backsplashes need to line up with the upper cabinet.
Usually the end of the backsplash tile, if aligned with the uppers, will die ON TOP OF the countertop below.
For example, cream, beige, brown or gray backsplash tile often matches granite, wood or neutral-color synthetic countertops. This is advantageous if you have small appliances or decorative accessories in colors such as such as red, black or turquoise that contrast with your tile.
A countertop needs to be installed before the backsplash is put on the walls above the countertop.
It's essential to use caulk where the backsplash meets the kitchen counter, as well as at the top and edges of the backsplash. This prevents water from seeping in between your tile and the wall or trickling in behind your countertop. Water that infiltrates your wall in this way can cause mold, rot, and damage.
So just remember: Backsplashes should go behind the stove and between the countertop and the bottom of the upper cabinets, but not behind the fridge. The backsplash should be wherever there will be food and water splatter, but not where it can't be seen.
It's always advisable to start tiling your grid in the centre of the wall, as it's easier to make sure your pattern is symmetrical. It also means any half-tiles you may need can go at the end of each row and will be of matching size.
Most of the tiles will need to be cut to fit the perimeter of the room; starting in a corner allows you to begin the pattern with full tiles on a straight line and move evenly into the room. In this case, beginning in the center may make it more difficult to get the pattern moving evenly.
Bullnose tiles have one curved edge that finishes a tile installation neatly without exposing the unglazed ceramic or porcelain edges. To finish a backsplash without bullnose tiles, you'll need to disguise the unglazed edge of the tiles with trim molding or caulk.
Use a Caulked Edge (No Transition)
Some tile types don't offer a bullnose because a bullnose is not necessary. Glass tiles, tumbled stone varieties, and porcelain tiles have naturally finished edge. They do not need a separate edge piece to create a polished look. Simply install up to the edge and caulk.
Standard Backsplash Height
In general, the backsplash is installed to the height of four inches from the surface of the countertop. These backsplashes can be of any material or color, but we suggest that it compliments the cabinets and the countertops.
Make sure there's at least 8 ”- 9” between the burner and the tile surface, or a back control panel on the stove to provide distance. Always follow fire codes when installing your stove.