Backsplash for White Shaker Cabinets Complete the Timeless Look

A backsplash is an integral design element that can make or break the look of your white shaker cabinets. It serves both aesthetic and functional purposes, protecting the walls from splashes while also providing an opportunity to add visual interest. When paired with white shaker cabinets, the right backsplash can take your kitchen from drab to fab. Here’s an in-depth look at how to choose the perfect backsplash to complete the timeless look of white shaker cabinets.

Choosing the Right Backsplash for White Shaker Cabinets

White shaker cabinets have a simple and classic look that pairs well with many styles. When selecting a backsplash for white shakers, consider the overall look you want to achieve.

Complementary Colors and Materials

Look for backsplash colors and materials that complement white shaker cabinets without competing. Soft neutral tones like white, beige, gray and light brown are safe choices. Natural stone slabs in hues like marble, travertine or slate also pair beautifully.

Texture and Pattern

While white shaker cabinets have a smooth, flat front, the backsplash offers a chance to add visual interest through texture and pattern. Subway tiles, marble mosaics, stone slabs, ceramic tiles, and even glass or metal tiles can add appealing dimensions.

Finishing Touches

Consider finishing touches that tie the backsplash and white shakers together. Accent tiles that pick up colors from elsewhere in the kitchen help create unity. Continuing backsplash materials into other areas is another technique.

The Most Popular Backsplash Options for White Shaker Cabinets

From gleaming marble to handmade ceramic tile, there are endless options for backsplashing white shaker cabinets. Here are some of the best and most popular.

Subway Tile

A white subway tile backsplash is a classic pairing for white shaker cabinets. The square 3 x 6-inch tiles have beveled edges that create subtle shadow lines, adding just enough visual interest without competing. Subway tiles come in glossy bright white, matte almond, and an array of pastel hues.

Lay the tiles in the traditional brickwork pattern or get creative with patterns like herringbone. To make the backsplash pop, use subway tiles in one color for the bulk of the backsplash then accent with a contrasting color.

Marble Tile

Both marble slab and marble mosaics make an elegant backsplash for white shaker cabinets. The naturally occurring veining in marble adds depth and makes a statement. Stick with white, cream or gray-based marbles to complement the cabinetry.

Small marble mosaics beautifully show off the stone’s striations. Marble slab brings drama, especially when framed with subway tiles. For a rustic look, use tumbled marble with softened edges.

Travertine and Limestone

Travertine and limestone are natural stones that share similarities with marble. Travertine has an intricate webbed pattern that gives it visual texture. Limestone appears smooth but has subtle irregularities that catch the eye.

Use travertine and limestone just like marble. The natural stone varieties pair perfectly with white shaker cabinets, whether used in mosaics or large slabs. Keep grout light for a clean look.

Ceramic Tile

Handmade and hand-painted ceramic tiles lend unique character to a backsplash. From vivid Spanish tiles to decorative tiles fired in rich hues, the options are limitless. Spanish tiles with their zig-zag and floral accents make a bold statement. More elemental shapes and designs have an earthy feel.

Mix and match ceramic tile designs for one-of-a-kind patchwork style. Keep the rest of the backsplash simple to let the decorative tiles stand out behind white shakers.

Glass Tile

Glass tiles impart a glamorous and reflective look, resembling jewels on the backsplash. Available in every color, they bring pops of brightness behind white cabinets. Clear glass tiles pick up neighboring colors and patterns.

Combine glass mosaics with white subway tiles or use alone. Glass tile works with any style from modern to traditional. Just take care that the busyness doesn’t overwhelm simple shaker cabinets.

Metal Tiles

Metal backsplashes lend an industrial vibe, especially complementing modern white shaker cabinets. Stainless steel, copper, bronze and tin tiles come in varied shapes and finishes from hammered and pebbled to sleek.

Install metal mosaic tiles or bold solid sheets for maximum impact. Pair metal with white subway tiles to temper the hardness. Warm metal finishes like copper bring out the tones in natural wood counters.

Design Tips for Backsplashing White Shaker Cabinets

Approach backsplashing white shaker cabinets thoughtfully, keeping the overall style and functionality of the kitchen in mind. Here are some top design tips.

Select a Focal Point

Every kitchen needs one standout area to draw the eye. Make the backsplash this attention-getter, using an accent material or eye-catching pattern. Frame with simple tiles to avoid overstimulation.

Consider the Countertops

Look at backsplash materials that complement the countertops. Matching tones and textures creates flow. Natural stone backsplashes work with stone counters. Ceramic tiles pair well with wood.

Don’t Overwhelm the Space

Shaker cabinets have an airier quality than ornate styles. Overly busy backsplashes compete rather than complement. Use restrained designs and lighter colors to maintain the light and bright essence.

Incorporate Other Materials

Tying the backsplash to other finishes gives continuity. Choose subway tile that matches the size of floor tiles or extend counter surfaces into the backsplash area.

Protect Walls and Cabinets

While adding style, backsplashes also need to protect surfaces from cooking splatters and spills. Select durable materials like ceramic, stone and glass. Seal natural stone to prevent staining and discoloration from moisture.

Consider the Cleanup

Keep ease of cleaning in mind, especially for backsplashes behind the range and sink. Textured stone and handmade tiles need more maintenance than smooth surfaces like glass.

Backsplash Inspirations for White Shaker Kitchens

Here are some stunning backsplash examples guaranteed to complete the look of white shaker cabinets.

Neutral Tone Marble Hex Mosaics

Small marble hexagonal mosaics in soft beige and gray shades have an ultra-modern feeling but still complement traditional shaker cabinets. To give added definition, frame with light beige subway tiles.

Bold Black and White Geometric

Make a contemporary statement with dramatic black and white geometric tiles. Their crisscrossing angles pair strikingly with clean white shakers. Sleek modern cabinets work best to handle the strong graphic look.

Slate Gray Subway Tiles

Cool gray slate subway tiles lend an urban edge, especially when installed in a running grid or herringbone pattern. Match with gray, white or black countertops to continue the moody sophistication. Crisp white shaker cabinets keep the look light.

Whimsical Moroccan Fish Scale Tiles

Inject seaside charm with Moroccan fish scale tiles in azure blue or seafoam green. Their fun scale shape catches the light, reflecting shades of turquoise. White shaker cabinets let the tiles make a splash.

Rustic White Subway Brickwork

Nothing could be more classic than glossy white subway tiles set in traditional brickwork pattern. The clean white-on-white pairing works with any kitchen style from modern farmhouse to transitional.

Natural Stone Slab Statement

For real drama, use a single massive slab of marble, travertine or sandstone as a backsplash. The organic striations and overall scale make a bold statement. Pair with simple white shakers to keep the look refined.

Completing the Timeless White Shaker Kitchen

Adding the perfect backsplash puts the finishing design touches on a kitchen with white shaker cabinets. Choose colors, materials and patterns that enhance rather than compete with the cabinetry. Natural stone mosaics and subway tiles are timeless complements.

Remember to keep functionality in mind and select durable backsplash materials that are easy to clean. Tie everything together with finishing touches like accent tiles and tying backsplash materials into other design elements. With a thoughtfully conceived and executed backsplash design, you can complete the timeless beauty of white shaker cabinets.


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