Painting a Faux Finish on Tile Backsplash

I have a neutral color ceramic backsplash in my kitchen. I primed it and used a textured paint. I would like to enhance the look. Can I sponge another color over the base color it is now, or do I have to start over? I am looking to do something very thrifty. Thank you.


By KATHY DUIGNAN from Chicago, IL

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October 26, 20100 found this helpful

You can, but just realize that the more coats you have, the more it changes the color. Sometimes that's good, but you can take it away from the base color too much. I would try it in one small area, then live with it for a few days and see what you think. Here's more on faux painting:

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October 26, 2010

I have a white tile backsplash behind the stove. I'd like to do a faux uba tuba (granite) paint technique on them. Has anyone done this before? What equipment did you have? What were the steps in the process? Were you happy with the end result? How has it worn?


By mrsgym from MI


Painting a Faux Finish on Tile Backsplash

Is your kitchen in need of a pick-me-up? Here's a fun, creative idea that's sure to warm up your kitchen without breaking the bank!

Add interest to your kitchen by updating the back-splash area between your counter tops and upper cabinets. Rather than going to the expense of tiling this area with a ceramic tile, you can simply faux-paint the tiled look you desire!

Difficulty: Moderate

Instructions and things you'll need:

1 QT latex paint in an eggshell or satin finish
Various earthen colors of acrylic craft paints
White acrylic craft paint
Small paint roller and head
Paint tray
Aluminum foil
Plastic wrap
Small sea sponges
ChartPak Graph Tape, 1/4" or 1/3" preferably


A firm feather
Wide paintbrush with soft bristles
1" paintbrush
Masking tape
Disposable gloves
Thin artist paint brushes
Old sheet or tarp
Clean, lint-free rags
Small, shallow dishes for mixing paint colors
Water for thinning paints

Optional: Spray can of clear protectant spray in a matte finish

Step 1: Remove all items from the counter tops near your work area. Spread an old sheet or tarp across the counter tops and appliances to protect these areas from paint spills. Ensure that you have a well-lit work area. If you don't have under-the-counter lighting, you may want to bring in a work light or floor lamp to illuminate the back-splash.

Step 2: Ensure that the wall space is clean and free of dust, splattered foods and grease. If necessary, wash the wall space and allow to fully dry before continuing. (The paint will not adhere to dirty surfaces.)


Step 3: Use masking tape to tape off the cabinets, counter top and any edges where your new paint will stop. Put aluminum foil in the paint pan. After you're done with the paint pan, it's a time saver to just remove the foil and toss it! Plus, it keeps your paint pan in new condition! Mix your quart of base color wall paint and pour into paint pan. Roll on paint, then cut-in the edges with the 1" brush. Allow to dry thoroughly! This will be your 'grout' between your new 'tiles' and you'll be putting tape on this surface next. If paint is not dry, it may lift-off when you remove tape later!

Step 4: When wall paint is thoroughly dried, begin taping-off your desired 'tile pattern' using the ChartPak Graph Tape. You can make the tiles 'straight' or on a 'diagonal,' as shown in photo. Be sure to make your 'tiles' the same size, measuring with the ruler. NOTE: IF your tile look will go behind a stove or other focal point, start in this area with your tape, as you'll want this area to appear centered and even.


Step 5: After you're certain that you're happy with the taped-off tile pattern you've created, it's time for the fun part! Put about a tablespoon of one of the neutral acrylic paints in a shallow dish. Thin with a bit of water. In separate dishes, do the same with several more paint colors. Ensure that ONE of your colors is white, as this will provide depth. You'll want several colors on hand in order to create a random effect, rather than using one color, then a second color on top of it, and so on and so on. HINT: When you look at marbled tiles, you'll notice that no two are the same. While they may have the same coloring, several tiles will have the colors layered in completely different ways.

Step 6: Put on gloves. Using a sponge, begin dabbing paint colors randomly over the wall space. No need to be careful here, just go right over the ChartPak tape. Alternate your paint color every so often. Use varying pressure with some light touches and some heavy-handed motions. Occasionally 'drag' your sponge slightly, creating 'motion' in the marbling effects. Switch to the watered-down white paint occasionally, as this will create some depth.


Step 7: While your paint is still somewhat wet, rip off a length of plastic wrap, about 8 or 10 inches. Place the plastic wrap ON the wet paint. Pat the plastic against the wall. You want it to crinkle in places, NOT be smooth, as it will create another dimension on your 'tiles.' When the plastic is flat against the wall, covering some of the tiles you've just created, pull it OFF, revealing a sort of 'veining' in the tiles. Throw away the used plastic and get a fresh piece to do this again, until you've gone across all the new 'tiles.'

Step 8: Finished product! Next, dab a feather in a paint color and lightly pull the feather across a small area on one of the tiles. DO NOT CROSS THE ENTIRE TILE, but rather create partial 'veining' or 'cracking.' DO NOT do this to every, single tile. The effect looks more realistic when it's only on a few tiles. Remember to change the direction of your 'veining' too! While your 'veins' are still tacky, lightly brush them with the soft, DRY paintbrush to create a muted effect. Again, only do this to SOME of your tiles.

Step 9: Faux-painted tiles behind a flat screen TV livens up the space. Before your 'tiles' fully dry, remove the ChartPak tape very slowly, so as not to remove the base paint underneath. You will reveal your 'grout lines!'

OPTIONAL: Spray clear matte protectant on your new back-splash to protect your creation from spills and splatters.

Remove the masking tape, sheets and protective tarp from the counters.

Stand back and admire your new creation and get ready to receive the compliments from everyone who sees your handiwork! Good luck. (04/17/2010)

By kathleen williams

Painting a Faux Finish on Tile Backsplash

The picture I posted is of my countertops after I used a granite paint kit on them. The paint all comes in a kit which has everything you need, from the primer to the top coat. I did the project in just a few days and it looks awesome. I chose not to use it on my backsplash but you can use it almost anywhere. I used the chocolate brown color, there are other colors available.

I bought the product here: (04/26/2010)

By Mike

RE: Painting a Faux Finish on Tile Backsplash

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