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15 Rustic Kitchen Backsplash Ideas

You just redid your counters, or maybe you're working on a significant kitchen remodel. Perhaps the backsplash in your kitchen was just...wrong. Unfortunately, you're not sure how to redo your backsplash to get the rustic look you want and match the rest of the kitchen. That's fine; try one of these Rustic Kitchen Backsplash Ideas to make a backsplash you love, and one that fits your kitchen theme.


1) Polyurethane

Wood panels are one of the best ways to create a rustic look that brings to mind old, wooden cabins without drywall interiors. Unfortunately, they come with one inherent problem; they're not usually waterproof enough for a kitchen backsplash. Wood panels in wet areas can get mold, mildew, and rot, and grease can leave ugly stains. To get a rustic wood look that won't stain or get mildew, seal the surface with clear polyurethane like this from The Home Depot.

2) Rough Stone Look

While rough wood can create a rustic wood, rough stone also adds to the rustic charm of an area. Rock can be expensive, though, so if you don't have a big budget, try wallpaper like this that looks like rough stone. The wallpaper is washable, so it should hold up to grease from your stove or water from your sink. You may want to have a more durable backsplash behind the stove, but if you don't like this wallpaper, you can reposition it without leaving a sticky residue behind.

3) DIY Corrugated Metal

The word "rustic" can mean a variety of things. It can be a log cabin in the woods, with rough wood construction, or the rough-cut stone of a mountain cabin. It can also be metal, like the metal that one often finds discarded on farms and rural properties. Watch this video by RSH to learn how to turn a piece of rusty corrugated metal into a kitchen backsplash. You can use coatings to make sure it'll clean easily, and that water will slide off it, if it's behind the sink.

4) Earth Tones

When you think of a rustic home or kitchen, you most likely picture something with earth tones. You don't generally want something bright or shiny, at the least. Instead, try to find tan, brown, and gray materials like the ones in the picture. You can also use dark green. Mottled textures give a worn, rustic look, so try to find something with stone mixed in or something with dappled paint. If you want metallic colors, use a brown and tan backsplash material with hints of gold mixed in.

5) Linen

Linen has a natural rustic look to it. You see it in farmhouses and imagine it in cabins in the wilderness, but how can you have a linen backsplash? After all, isn't the whole point of a backsplash that it should be made from waterproof and easy-to-clean material? This wallpaper from Amazon looks like linen, but it's actually self-stick wallpaper. Since it's waterproof and easy to clean, it should work as a backsplash for either a sink or stove and the adhesive makes it easy to install yourself.

6) Fake Wood Panels

Wood is one of the best ways to make something look rustic, but it doesn't always work well as a backsplash. Water soaks into untreated wood, and it can get mold, mildew, and rot behind the sink. Grease will stain it, too, so it doesn't work on its own behind a stove. Instead of using wood for your rustic look, try using a substitute like the wood-look wallpaper in this image, or wood panels from a home improvement store.

7) Barnwood

Barnwood is a classic rustic material. It's often used to build rustic furniture and makes a great choice for anything farmhouse- or rustic-themed. Unfortunately, barnwood has the same problem as wood; it's not waterproof, and it's not easy to clean grease off it. One possible solution is printed panels like these ones from The Home Depot. The surface is washable, so it'll make a practical backsplash, and the smooth surface will be a lot easier to clean than rough barnwood.

8) Copper Tree of Life

The tree of life is a common image for kitchen backsplashes, and it works well for a rustic backsplash. This brings natural imagery into your kitchen for a more nature-themed kitchen. Copper panels like this one from Amazon depict the tree in a rustic manner, since they're made of copper with a mottled finish. The duller finish ties the panels into any rustic paneling you have around them. These pieces work best as a centerpiece behind a stove or sink.

9) Ledger Stone

For the most part, anything made of stone or wood will look rustic. This leaves a variety of materials you can use, and if you're not a DIY expert, it can be intimidating. Watch this video by Do and Brew - DIY to learn how to install a ledger stone backsplash for your kitchen. This stone is rectangular, so it doesn't have the uneven shape of some stone panels, but the rocks have varying thicknesses to make it look like something that might've been installed in an old cottage.

10) Peel and Stick Wood Look

If you've decided on a wood look for your rustic backsplash, you've made a good choice. Wood fits the rustic theme and generally looks great, but you'll have to do some work to make it functional. One way to avoid working with wood and still get the wood look is peel-and-stick contact paper. This contact paper from Amazon is designed for not only walls but also drawers and other applications. This way, you can use the contact paper for a durable and waterproof backsplash, then use any extra to make other spots in the kitchen match the backsplash.

11) DIY Pallet Wood

Pallet wood is a dream come true when it comes to rustic furniture and other rural designs. It often has a distressed look from being used outside, so you don't have as much work to do to make it look rustic. Boards on an individual pallet often weather differently, resulting in a variety of colors that you can use to create unique patterns, too. Make sure to coat the wood with polyurethane to make it waterproof and make it easier to clean, since the rough wood will absorb water and hold stains.

12) Hammered Copper

Copper is another great way to create a rural look. It's also a wonderful backsplash material, since it'll hold up to water from your sink, and can be cleaned more easily than drywall or wood panels. You can get hammered copper tiles like these from Amazon, and use them to build a backsplash or hire a contractor to build a backsplash with them. The hammered look adds to the overall rustic appearance since you can see the hammer marks from when these tiles were crafted.

13) Wood Cross Sections

Yes, wood is a common way to make a backsplash, but this idea is...unique. Normally, when you make something with wood, you use wood boards, right? Kristin from White Arrows Home built a backsplash made from the cut-off ends of logs. Read her article here to learn how she did it, and how you can do it in your own home. This style gives the area a log cabin look, but it'll need a solid layer of clearcoat to waterproof it afterward!

14) DIY Brick Paneling

Bricks are common in the industrial theme, but you can also find them in rustic homes. After all, many cottages and rural locations have brick walkways. Check out this video by OurMouseHouse to learn how you can create a cheap brick-looking backsplash. While you can use bricks, the brick paneling they used is probably the most affordable option. Ensure that any materials you use are waterproof, or add a smooth waterproof coating that will be easy to clean.

15) DIY Patina Copper

Rustic decorations and furniture almost always have one thing in common; they tend to be unfinished or rough-looking. While copper creates a rustic look, you can add to that appearance by getting oxidized copper, or creating a patine yourself. In this article, April Wilkerson describes how you can patina copper to get a rustic, oxidized look. You'll want to add a coating to waterproof it so it can be cleaned easily, and so the water from your sink doesn't increase the amount of patina.


What type of rustic look do you have in your kitchen? Did we mention an idea you liked? Tell us about it in the comments below!


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