DIY Summer Part I: Kitchen Backsplash

photoJust in case traveling close to 5,000 miles this summer and being gone a total of 7 weeks wasn’t enough for the Davis family, we decided to squeeze some home renovations in there too!

Jonathan and I have been talking for a while about putting in a backsplash in our kitchen and redoing our original and oh so lovely 1950s bathroom.  We finally pulled the trigger over the last 2 months and got to work.

We took on the backsplash ourselves and as with any home improvement projects, reminded ourselves this was most likely going to take longer, cost more money and be a bigger headache than we anticipated.  And sure enough, all the above was true!

We started with the backsplash…you know, just a simple subway tile backsplash…how hard could that be!  We went with Almond 3 x 6 Daltile Subway Tile from Home Depot…love me some subway tile…I think I would subway tile my whole house if I could.


The trickiest part about this project was the tile cuts.  We ended up buying a wet saw b/c to rent one for the amount of time it was going to take us would have cost more money.  We put the girls to bed, laid our mastic (the adhesive that sticks the tile to the wall) and began laying and cutting tile. J made the cuts…of which there were some that I ever so nicely asked him to make again…this is where home improvement projects and marriage DO NOT MIX.  You’re tired, after the first night you just want to finish and your perfectionistic wife is asking you to redo a cut that you just spent 20 minutes on.  It’s a recipe for major frustration!  It took us about 4 evenings to finish laying the tile and one afternoon to grout (We went with Light Smoke Polyblend Non-Sanded Grout).

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It was the finishing touch that our kitchen needed.  The previous owners had just redone the kitchen when we moved in and the backsplash was the final piece…I love it and am so thankful the hubs was willing to get it done:)

As for budget…we spent around $350 in materials and saved about $600-800 in labor by doing it ourselves.  We walked away from this project thinking…of course we can tile our shower and bathroom floor…no big deal…the backsplash had given us a false sense of home improvement confidence which was quickly dashed…more to come on that in the next post…




  1. Sarah Jo says

    Oh my word! I’m impressed and of course, looking forward to the next installment. I enjoyed the Hubbard’s renovation stories. You two can commiserate!

  2. Jody Hicks says

    Reminds me of the time Preston and I decided to put up the crown molding in our living room/kitchen, which we naively thought we could knock out in a day or two. You know how many corners and angles there are in that big room! We ended up buying the miter saw and taking a week to do the job (all day every day!) – lousy vacation, but we did save a pile of money, we have the saw, and we are still married. PTL.


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