How to Match Backsplash

Choosing the perfect backsplash for your kitchen can really bring the whole space together. But with so many backsplash options out there, how do you pick one that will complement your existing kitchen design? The key is learning how to properly match a backsplash with your cabinetry, countertops, flooring, and overall decor. This guide will provide tips on how to select a backsplash that coordinates beautifully. We’ll cover how color, material, and style factor into the equation so you end up with a cohesive look.

Choosing a Backsplash Color That Matches

When beginning your backsplash search, start by looking at the colors already present in your kitchen. What color are the cabinets? Countertops? Flooring? Paint on the walls? Identifying the existing color scheme will help determine which backsplash colors will work best.

Match the Cabinetry

In many kitchens, the cabinetry sets the foundation for the color palette. If your cabinets are warm wood tones like medium oak or cherry, you’ll want a backsplash color that complements the richness of the wood. Earthy backsplash hues like brown, beige, cream, and tan pair nicely with wood cabinetry. For example, a neutral tile with brown veining echoes the wood grain without overwhelming the space.

If your cabinets are painted white or a light color, you’ve got more versatility. Both light and dark backsplash colors can look beautiful against light cabinets. Go for white subway tile or marble mosaic for a matching light backsplash. Or try a bold navy blue or emerald green glass tile for contrast.

Complement Countertops

Granite, quartz, and other patterned countertop materials provide another opportunity to pick up colors for the backsplash. Aim for a backsplash hue that reflects one of the shades within the countertop. This creates a cohesive feel.

For instance, if your countertop is beige granite with flecks of navy blue, bring out that navy in the backsplash. Slate or navy blue glass tile would align perfectly.

Solid surface countertops can be matched even more directly. A creamy white quartz countertop would benefit from a glossy white tile backsplash. The two light colors work in unison.

Consider Flooring Tones

While the backsplash typically sits above the countertop level, assessing how it pairs with the flooring color is still helpful. Just like with cabinets and countertops, you want everything in the same view to blend well.

Hardwood flooring in a natural wood finish creates an easy match. Use a backsplash that picks up the woodsy tones. For example, planked ceramic tile in a burnt orange hue feels earthy against wood flooring.

Tile or vinyl flooring opens up more backsplash options. But stay within the same color family or a complementary one for the flooring and backsplash. A purple and gray pattered vinyl floor works with metallic purple mosaic backsplash tile.

Factor in Wall Color

Don’t overlook how the existing wall color affects the backsplash choice. While the backsplash tiles themselves provide color, they should work with the overall kitchen wall paint as well.

If the walls are a vivid shade like tomato red or cobalt blue, go for a neutral backsplash. Let the walls speak louder than the backsplash. For a neutral wall like beige or gray, make the backsplash the star with an attention-grabbing patterned or colored tile.


To recap, the main kitchen elements that should guide backsplash color choice are:

  • Cabinetry – Match wood tones or complement light cabinets
  • Countertops – Choose a hue seen in patterned countertop material or match solid surface color
  • Flooring – Coordinate with hardwood, tile, or vinyl tone
  • Wall color – Pair a vibrant wall with neutral backsplash and neutral wall with lively backsplash

Looking at all these factors together will ensure your new backsplash integrates into the existing space beautifully.

Selecting a Backsplash Material That Complements

The color of the backsplash is critical but so is choosing a material that aligns with the kitchen’s style. Matching the backsplash material to your existing finishes will create consistency. Consider which materials are already present.

Pick Up On Wood Tones

Wood cabinetry is a popular choice that instantly provides warmth and character. Backsplash materials that mimic wood allow you to carry the wooded aspect throughout the kitchen.

  • Wood plank backsplash – Use real stained wood, shaped into elongated hexagons or herringbone patterns
  • Wood-look porcelain or ceramic tile – Convincingly resembles natural wood but with more durability
  • Faux wood laminate – Made from wood pulp on a plastic backing creating wood grain

These wood-inspired backsplash choices enable that woody thread to run from cabinets to backsplash. Consider finish as well. Use a matte material to match a matte cabinet finish.

Complement Marble or Stone Countertops

For marble, granite, soapstone, or other stone countertops, continue that natural stone feeling into the backsplash. Brick, travertine, marble, slate, or stone mosaic tiles replicate the veins, speckles, and striations within the countertop stone.

Carry the colors directly with marble subway tile, marble hexagons, or marble mosaic. Travertine subway tile, slate mosaic tile, and slate stacked stone are other stone matching ideas. Keeping the backsplash in the same stone family strengthens the connection visually.

Align with Tile Floors

Ceramic or porcelain tile floors can inspire a perfectly suited tile backsplash. Select a tile material, size, shape, and pattern that complements the flooring. Keeping the grout color consistent also polishes the paired look.

For example, a rectangular porcelain tile floor calls for a matching rectangular ceramic tile backsplash. Or pair a Moroccan fish scale floor tile pattern with a mosaic backsplash in similar colors. Use the same grout gray.

Match Stainless Steel Appliances

Stainless steel appliances are a popular kitchen choice. But too much stainless steel can look cold. Warm it up with backsplash tile that picks up the silvery tones.

  • Metal tile in stainless steel, nickel, copper, or chrome
  • Gray, brown, black, or white subway tile
  • White marble or quartzite

These backsplashes reflect light similarly to harmonize with stainless appliances.


Remember these material matching tips when selecting a backsplash:

  • Use wood-look backsplash with real wood cabinetry
  • Choose stone tile that matches countertop material
  • Pick floor tile inspiring shape and color for backsplash
  • Pair metallic backsplash with stainless appliances

Repeating backsplash materials already seen in the kitchen helps achieve a coherent design.

Choosing a Backsplash Design That Fits Your Decor

Beyond backsplash color and material, the overall tile design plays a big role in tying everything together decor-wise. Keep the room’s aesthetic in mind when assessing backsplash pattern options.

Fit Backsplash Geometric Patterns with Decor

Does your kitchen have a contemporary, modern vibe indicated by angular furniture and accessories? If so, go for a geometric backsplash pattern. This echoes the decor.

  • Herringbone – Elbow-shaped tiles alternate direction in rows
  • Chevron – Zigzag pointed pattern
  • Hexagon – Six-sided shape tiles cover in honeycomb format

A sleek geometric backsplash acts as the perfect finishing contemporary touch.

Align Organic Patterns with Eclectic Decor

What if your kitchen has more of an eclectic feel with retro, botanical, or global flair? In that case, consider an organic patterned backsplash.

  • Leaf, branch, or plant inspired
  • Moroccan fish scale or medallion
  • Freeform mosaics with curved tile edges
  • Handpainted ceramic tiles depicting flowers

These freeflowing backsplash designs complement the creativity of boho, vintage, or traditional spaces.

Pick Neutral Backsplash for Bold Decor

Some kitchen designs make a bold statement with bright colors, industrial elements like exposed ductwork, or daring shapes. Allow such striking decor to take center stage by installing a neutral backsplash.

  • White subway tile
  • Beige stone mosaic
  • Matte black ceramic tile
  • Clear glass tile

Keep the backsplash subtle so it doesn’t compete visually. Let it fade into the background.

Consider Backsplash Shape and Size

Make sure the scale of the backsplash aligns with the room proportions. Small kitchens can get overwhelmed by oversized tile. Instead, try:

  • Mosaic – Tiny individual tiles fit together like a puzzle
  • Subway – Classic 3×6-inch rectangular shape
  • Mini tile – 1-inch square tiles

Larger kitchens can handle more impactful backsplash tile dimensions like elongated planks or widexl format tiles measuring 12×24 inches.


Fit the backsplash design to the kitchen decor with these strategies:

  • Choose geometric tile patterns for modern spaces
  • Pick organic tile designs for eclectic styles
  • Go neutral if decor has bold colors or elements
  • Mind tile size and scale for the kitchen dimensions

Selecting a backsplash pattern that suits the overall decor prevents a disjointed look.

How to Match Backsplash with Countertops

One of the most important backsplash matching considerations is pairing it properly with the countertop. Since these two surfaces meet, they must complement each other.

Match Solid Countertop Color

For a countertop in a single, consistent color like white, black, or beige, the simplest option is to match that color precisely with the backsplash.

Some examples:

  • White quartz countertop + white subway tile backsplash
  • Black granite countertop + black mosaic backsplash
  • Beige Corian countertop + beige ceramic subway backsplash

Matching the countertop color exactly creates a seamless look.

Coordinate with Granite Countertops

Granite countertops have an irregular blend of mineral flecks across their surface. Pull out one or two of those colors for the backsplash.

If the granite has waves of blue and yellow, shiny blue glass subway tile is a perfect backsplash pairing. Or if the granite contains smoky gray swirls, muted gray marble backsplash mosaic ties everything together.

Contrast Busy Countertops with Simple Backsplash

For a countertop with a very busy pattern like terrazzo or heavily veined marble, keep the backsplash simple. Allow the countertop décor to stay the focus by choosing a plain tile.

  • White subway tile
  • Clear glass tile
  • Black tile

These unfussy backsplashes prevent clashing with ornate countertops.

Align Backsplash Lines with Countertop Edges

Take the opportunity to line up the grout lines in the backsplash tile with the countertop edge. This refinement makes the two materials appear as one unified surface.

With rectangular subway tile, position the grout lines so they match up perfectly with the countertop corner. The grid continues visually from backsplash to countertop.

Use Countertop Backsplash Bullnose

Some countertops come with a matching bullnose piece that provides a built-in mini backsplash. This functions as a border transitioning from counter to wall backsplash.

Ensure the heights align properly – keep the wall backsplash slightly lower than the bullnose so it tucks underneath neatly.


Follow these tips for coordinating backsplash with countertops successfully:

  • Match solid countertop with same color backsplash
  • Draw out a countertop’s natural colors into the backsplash
  • Offset busy countertops with plain backsplash
  • Align backsplash grout lines with countertop edge
  • Use bullnose for a smooth countertop-to-backsplash link

Careful countertop and backsplash pairing prevents awkward gaps or mismatched materials in adjoining zones.

How to Pick a Backsplash with Dark Cabinets

Dark wood or painted cabinets make a stylish, dramatic statement in kitchens today. But pairing them with the right backsplash is key. You want the dark cabinets to stand out while the backsplash warms up the ambiance.

Warm Up Dark Cabinets with Natural Stone Backsplash

Natural stone in the backsplash balances the boldness of dark cabinets. The variation and texture of stone soothes the intensity of the dark cabinet color.

  • Honed travertine subway tile
  • Multicolor granite mosaic
  • Marble tile with swirls of tan, cream, and grey

Pairing the rich color and pattern inherent in natural stone backsplashes with espresso cabinets keeps the kitchen from feeling too heavy.

Contrast with Light Tile Backsplash

Another way to offset dark cabinets is by installing a backsplash in a light color. This contrast makes both the cabinets and backsplash pop.

  • White subway or brick tile
  • Soft grey mosaic
  • Light beige ceramic tile

Aim for a lighter and brighter backsplash material against painted or stained cabinets in a dark espresso, charcoal, or black tone.

Add Pops of Color for Accent

While soothing hues can balance dark cabinets, don’t be afraid to bring in color too. Contrasting cherry red, sunny yellow, or emerald green backsplash tile against dark cabinets makes for dynamic style.

Use color as an accent in one area, like behind the range or around window. Or do an all-over colorful pattern like an Italian-inspired mosaic featuring tiles in multiple bright shades.

Install Wood Backsplash for Cohesion

Wooden backsplashes infuse warmth while matching the material and finish of wood cabinetry. Using the same wood species as the cabinets results in smooth cohesion.

  • Reclaimed barnwood planks
  • Rich walnut backsplash boards
  • Charcoal gray stained wood herringbone

The woody tones and natural texture bring out the inherent beauty of dark wood cabinetry.


Here are the top tips for choosing a backsplash with dark cabinets:

  • Pair natural stone backsplash for warmth
  • Use light-colored tile for bold contrast
  • Accent with pops of color backsplash tile
  • Install wooden backsplash to match cabinets

Any of these approaches blends beautifully with dark cabinetry while brightening up the ambiance.

How to Match Kitchen Backsplash and Floor

In addition to the countertops and cabinets, it’s wise to evaluate how the backsplash pairs with the kitchen flooring too. Matching these elements makes the entire kitchen seem united.

Match Hardwood Flooring

Hardwood plank flooring in natural, brown wood tones provides an easy starting point for the backsplash selection. Continue that earthy wood look into the backsplash.

  • Wood plank backsplash
  • Walnut ceramic tile
  • Terracotta, brown, or beige subway tile

Any of these options picks up on the colors and graining of wood floors for harmony.

Coordinate Similar Tones in Tile

Ceramic, porcelain, or stone tile flooring opens up many possibilities. But limiting backsplash and floor tile to the same color family keeps it cohesive.

For example, pair a terracotta tile floor with terracotta and red-hued backsplash mosaic. Or couple a gray porcelain floor tile with soft gray marble subway backsplash.

Repeat Floor Tile Shape or Finish

Take inspiration from the floor tile shape or finish directly. Use the same size and shape of tile or opt for a complementary mosaic or mini tile pattern.

Carry the aesthetic further by selecting a matching tile finish. If the floors are matte, go for a matte backsplash tile. Or match the sheen with glossy floor and backsplash tiles.

Align Grout Lines & Colors

Consistent grout color and aligned grout lines add refinement between floor and backsplash. Use the same gray, white, or black grout color throughout. Then carefully position backsplash grout lines so they lineup evenly with floor tile grout.

Vary Floor and Backsplash Patterns

Contrasting floor and backsplash patterns can look fantastic together. Just ensure there’s a color thread connecting the two for unity.

For example, pair a geometric Moroccan fish scale floor tile pattern with a dynamic purple glass mosaic backsplash connected by shared gray grout.


Use these strategies to make backsplash and floors work in sync:

  • Choose backsplash in similar brown and woody hues as hardwood
  • Select floor and backsplash tile in coordinating colors
  • Repeat the same tile shape, size, or finish
  • Align grout lines for smooth visual flow
  • Vary tile patterns to create interest

With some thoughtful coordination, the floors and backsplash can enhance each other stylishly.

How to Match Backsplash Around White Cabinets

White kitchen cabinets deliver a light, airy elegance. But pairing the backsplash with crisp white cabinetry requires awareness. You want the backsplash to complement without overwhelming.

Choose Subtle Tones

Super bold backsplash colors or patterns will compete with pristine white cabinets. Keep backsplashes more low key so the cabinetry remains the focal point.

  • White subway tile
  • Soft gray, beige, or blue mosaic
  • Neutral granite or marble

Quiet yet beautiful backsplash colors like these let the cabinets shine.

Accent Small Areas

While dominantly neutral backsplashes work best, add pops of brighter color through selective use. Limit vivid tile to a single row, the range backsplash area, or as trim border.

Vibrant tomato red or electric blue tile in just a strip behind the faucet provides the perfect dose of color against white cabinets.

Contrast Texture

Crisp white cabinets have ultra smooth texture. Introduce opposing textures in the backsplash like stone, slate, or weathered metals.

Rough stone mosaic or rustic wood plank tile plays off the cabinets’ smoothness for dimensional appeal. Just keep the color subdued so texture contrasts remain the focus.

Complement Natural Wood Tones

For white painted cabinets paired with wood countertops or a wood floor, take decorative inspiration from those materials into the backsplash.

Natural stone, ceramic wood-look planks, real wood panels, or mosaics in warm beige and brown earth tones blend beautifully with white cabinetry while connecting to the wood