20 Unique Counter to Ceiling Backsplash Ideas: Your Ultimate Guide to Kitchen Designs

Last updated on April 12, 2024

Exploring counter to ceiling backsplash ideas is vital because these impactful design features can transform an ordinary kitchen into an extraordinary space.

I’m proud to present these 20 unique counter to ceiling backsplash ideas, meticulously designed by yours truly, and I sincerely hope you find them as inspiring and enjoyable to explore as I did creating them.

A counter-to-ceiling backsplash can transform a kitchen from ordinary to extraordinary, adding both functionality and aesthetic appeal.

This article delves into a variety of backsplash ideas that extend all the way up to the ceiling, offering a comprehensive guide to materials, colors, patterns, and design tips.

Whether you’re considering a classic subway tile, a rustic brick, or a modern glass panel, this article provides all the details you need to make an informed decision.

Stick around to explore the myriad of options available for a counter-to-ceiling backsplash and find the perfect fit for your kitchen.

What's Inside

Subway Tile

subway tile

Taking inspiration from New York’s historic subway system, these classic rectangular tiles bring a sophisticated and clean aesthetic to any kitchen.

Available in various colors from stark white to moody black, they provide a great deal of versatility.

Stacked uniformly or arranged in a herringbone or crosshatch pattern, subway tiles can adapt suitably to a multitude of styles, whether traditional, modern or eclectic.

The ceramic material makes these tiles durable and easy to clean.

Famously used by designers around the globe, they have remained a timeless choice for a counter-to-ceiling backsplash.

Granite Slab

granite slab

Granite slab provides unmatched elegance and durability, being one of nature’s toughest materials.

Characterized by its speckled appearance, its visual allure complements almost any decor and cabinetry.

There are various shades available, from vibrant blues and reds to subdued blacks and whites, suitable for different tastes and interior designs.

It’s highly resistant to heat, stains, and scratches, making it a practical choice for busy kitchens.

Installation, although demanding precision, ensures a seamless finish.

However, it’s critical to get these slabs professionally installed and periodically sealed to maintain their beauty and function over time.

Its cost is higher compared to other options due to the material and labor involved, but the long-term value and robustness it offers are unrivaled.

The granite’s natural variation means each backsplash is unique, adding a layer of depth and interest to your space.

Combining this with under-cabinet lighting can bring out the specks in the granite, amplifying its elegance and transforming it into a kitchen centerpiece.

Metallic Finish

metallic finish

Versatility is a remarkable aspect of metallic finish backsplashes. Regardless of your kitchen’s style—contemporary, traditional, or industrial—a hint of metallic sheen enhances its elegance.

These finishes come in various shades, from bright silver to an earthy copper or bronze, fitting both a cooler or warmer color palette.

One key advantage of metallics is their ability to reflect light, brightening up your space instantly. For kitchens with limited natural light or smaller in size, a metallic backsplash can impart a sense of spaciousness.

Additionally, they are easy to clean and maintain.

On the downside, metallic finishes may show scratches or smudges more easily compared to other materials. Some might also find their reflective quality a bit overwhelming.

Nevertheless, for a splash of glamour and a modern flare, metallic finishes certainly make a statement.

Herringbone Pattern Tiles

herringbone pattern tiles

Herringbone pattern tiles have emerged as a popular choice, particularly among contemporary homeowners. The interlocking patterns tend to create an attractive visual intrigue that enhances a kitchen’s aesthetic appeal.

Here are noteworthy points about herringbone pattern tiles:

  • Design Flexibility: Available in countless colours and materials to pair with your pre-existing décor.
  • Dynamic Visual Impact: The distinct geometric pattern adds depth and movement, creating visual interest on your walls.
  • Durability: Often made from ceramic or porcelain, these tiles resist water, stains, and heat, making them a durable choice.
  • Installation: The complexity of the pattern can make it a bit more challenging to install; professional installation may be required.

Natural Stone Mosaic

natural stone mosaic

Perfect for those who appreciate nature’s artistry, natural stone mosaics delight with a unique blend of color and texture. Undeniably beautiful, these mosaic backsplashes showcase the raw and imperfect charm of natural stones.

1. Texture Variety: Ranging from rough-cut to polished, each piece carries an exclusive texture forming a backdrop with depth and intrigue.

2. Color Palette: The organic hues of natural stone defy any color limitation. Think cool blues, warm browns, earthy greens, and much more.

3. Versatile Design: Given the variety of stones and patterns available, you can design a layout that suits both traditional and contemporary styles.

4. Durability: Highly durable and heat-resistant, perfect for areas near stoves or ovens.

5. Easy Maintenance: Most stones are porous and need to be sealed to prevent staining. After sealing, they typically need just a mild soap solution for cleaning.

Remember, while stunningly beautiful, this option does need some special care because of its porous nature. Don’t be alarmed though – just a tad bit of added maintenance rewards you with a stunning kitchen masterpiece.

Mural or Patterned Tile

mural or patterned tile

Patterned tiles can truly provide an artistic flare to your kitchen. Incorporating a mural or unique pattern design can transform your backsplash into a focal point.

This design approach, popular in Mediterranean and Moroccan styles, offers vast possibilities for personalization – from intricate geometric patterns to delicate floral designs.

Using bold colors and contrasts, this option can reflect personal artistic taste and preference.

Pro tip: Keep the rest of your kitchen’s design simple to let your backsplash steal the show and avoid overwhelming the space.

A clear sealant will aid in preserving the lush colors and intricate designs of your backdrop.

Reclaimed Wood

reclaimed wood

Offering a rustic, earthy aesthetic, reclaimed wood is a creative and eco-friendly option. The history in each plank delivers a beautifully textured palette of hues and patinas that mix well with just about any design style.

Each piece is inherently unique, giving your kitchen a totally original look. Able to be used for the entirety of the backsplash or merely as an accent amongst tiles, its versatility is an added bonus. Applying a sealant ensures durability and makes cleaning a breeze.

Go green and pack a stylish punch with this option.

Brick Look

brick look

Offering a rustic yet timeless appeal, the brick look brings a unique grittiness to your kitchen that can enrich the overall aesthetic. This style of backsplash can be achieved both with authentic brick or brick-look tiles, depending on your preference.

1. Texture and Warmth: The rough texture of the brick imparts a warm and cozy ambiance that is particularly effective in larger spaces, providing a casual, homey feel.

2. Versatility: Whether you prefer a whitewashed or a natural brick look, this backsplash fits perfectly into a variety of kitchen styles, from industrial to country to modern.

3. Maintenance: Sealed brick is relatively easy to clean, however, the grooves and crevices might require a bit more effort to keep spotless.

4. Durability: An authentic brick backsplash offers excellent durability and can withstand high temperatures, making it suitable for areas behind the stove and oven.

5. Customization: With a myriad of colors and treatments available, you can easily customize the brick to fit your kitchen’s color scheme and overall design.



Marble provides a classic, timeless look that can add significant value to your home. With its high-end appeal, marble can effortlessly transform a kitchen space into a luxury environment.

However, the porous nature of marble can lead to stains if not sealed and cleaned properly. It’s also important to consider that marble is more prone to chipping and scratching than some other materials.

Despite these aspects, the unique elegance and natural beauty of marble, with its intricate veins and diverse color options, make it a popular choice among homeowners.

With a little extra care, a marble backsplash can become a stunning focal point in your kitchen.

Pressed Tin

pressed tin

The unique appeal of a pressed tin backsplash lies in its vintage charm and distinctive texture. These backsplashes inject intricate designs and metallic sheen into your kitchen, offering an eye-catching focal point. They are specifically great for the kitchen that harks back to yesteryears or seeks an industrial twist.

Easy to clean and hard-wearing, pressed tin is known to resist the test of time. This is why it’s not uncommon to see them in old, historic homes still shining as if new.

Installation is refreshingly straightforward. You can affix the panels to the wall with adhesive or nails, and trim according to the kitchen layout. The panels usually come in large sizes, making the installation quick and the seams less visible.

Pressed tin backsplashes can be painted over, giving you complete freedom to match or contrast with your kitchen color scheme. To keep its classic silver look, simply clear-coat to prevent rust.

Glass Tile

glass tile

Aesthetic appeal and versatility make glass tiles a preferred choice for many homeowners. Its transparency adds depth and sophistication to the kitchen environment, producing a unique light effect.

Glass tiles are impervious to water and stains, making them easy to maintain. They come in a variety of colors, patterns, and sizes, offering room for creativity in design while reflecting personal style.

Another advantage of glass tiles is their recyclability – an eco-friendly option to consider. But it’s not all bells and whistles; they are prone to scratching and price-wise, this choice falls in the medium to higher-end range.

Stainless Steel

stainless steel

Stainless steel’s popularity as a backsplash material arises from its modern aesthetic and low maintenance profile.

It’s heat-resistant and easily cleaned, an ideal choice for areas behind the stove or sink.

This material provides a seamless look as it can stretch from the counter to the ceiling unimpeded.

Given its neutral tone, stainless steel blends with nearly any color scheme, amplifying the allure of other elements in the room.

Moreover, its reflective surface bounces light around, enhancing kitchen brightness.

However, keep in mind, stainless steel would readily display smudges and fingerprints, thus requires regular wiping to keep it shiny.

Suitable cleaning products include a mild detergent or special stainless steel cleaners.



A suitable option for a more rustic aesthetic, Travertine is a type of limestone that comes in a variety of warm earth tones. It is durable yet gives an inviting appeal due to its unique texture from natural pits and voids.

Since it’s a porous material, it should be sealed to prevent stains and moisture absorption, making it ideal for both kitchen backsplashes and bathrooms. Additionally, varying finishes like matte, polished, brushed, or tumbled offer a range of looks to match any style.

Moreover, it brings a delightful contrast when paired with modern appliances and furnishings. Its maintenance is relatively simple, requiring mild soap and warm water for cleaning. Ultimately, a Travertine backsplash provides a timeless, organic touch to your space.

Mirror Tiled Backsplash

mirror tiled backsplash

Mirror tiles create a bold, distinctive look, offering a raw and contemporary aesthetic. They reflect light beautifully, thereby illuminating even the darkest kitchen areas. This can help small spaces feel larger and brighter.

A mirrored backsplash isn’t just practical for cleaning purposes, it also adds a sleek, modern touch.

  • Reflection of Light: The reflective surface aids in bouncing light around the room, making it ideal for smaller kitchens or areas with minimal natural light.
  • Style Versatility: Mirrored tiles can blend with multiple kitchen styles, whether you opt for a modern, traditional, or rustic look.
  • Visual Illusion: The mirror illusion can make your kitchen appear larger, a particularly beneficial feature for compact spaces.
  • Easy Maintenance: Mirror tiles are easy to wipe and clean, making them an appealing, practical choice.

However, fitting mirror tiles requires precision. Be prepared to hire a professional tiling service to ensure correct application and finish.

Rectangle Tiles

rectangle tiles

Rectangle tiles, whether installed vertically or horizontally, can do wonders in enhancing a kitchen or bathroom’s appeal. Focus on creating either a modern or traditional look based on tile arrangement. Horizontal placement offers a conventional feel, while vertical installation gives a contemporary touch.

Opt for different sizes ranging from small ‘subway tile’ styles to larger formats. Choice of color significantly influences the atmosphere; light-toned tiles can brighten up a space, whilst dark colors establish a sophisticated ambiance. Glossy finishes reflect light, creating an illusion of more space, while matte ones add a cozy and understated elegance.

Play around with patterns. A straight lay brings a clean, classic aesthetic, whereas the offset technique creates interesting movement. Stacked arrangement exudes a modern vibe, whilst a herringbone or crosshatch pattern provides a twist on the traditional.

Quartz Backsplash

quartz backsplash

Quartz, known for its durability and versatility, makes an excellent choice for a counter-to-ceiling backsplash. It’s a non-porous material which makes it resistant to stains, bacteria, and mold, translating to easy maintenance for homeowners.

With its spectrum of colors and patterns, Quartz offers aesthetic flexibility allowing it to effortlessly blend with a variety of kitchen designs.

Perfectly mimicking the elegance of natural stones without their associated upkeep, Quartz provides an upscale look. Even temperature tolerances in Quartz are higher than most materials, making it safe from sudden temperature changes.

Do remember, professional installation is recommended due to its weight, ensuring secure and correct placement. Quartz is a bit pricier than other options, however, its longevity and less frequent need for replacement can offer long-term savings.

So, if you’re seeking a combination of beauty, resilience, and low maintenance–Quartz backsplash definitely ticks all boxes.

Chevron Tile

chevron tile

A fashionable choice, Chevron tile seamlessly integrates a flair of class and sophistication to your kitchen. Its V-shaped patterning—whether horizontally or vertically oriented—offers a refreshing departure from conventional straight-set designs.

Importantly, selecting Chevron tiles warrants careful consideration of size and color. Smaller tiles in lighter shades convey a delicate, intricate vibe, meanwhile, larger tiles in darker hues demand attention, creating a striking statement.

Remember, the layout can be manipulated to either visually stretch your kitchen space or add a chic, coordinated accent to your countertops. Bear in mind that this design does require professional installation for that precise angled layout. However, the end result is a stand-out backsplash brimming with character and timeless appeal.

Vinyl Wallpaper

vinyl wallpaper

An affordable and creative option, vinyl wallpaper offers an array of design possibilities. Its diverse range of patterns and colors allows for personal touch, making each backsplash unique.

This material is known for its durability and ease of cleaning, ideal for spaces that see frequent use. Applying it is straightforward, you simply adhere and smooth it onto the specified area.

Keep in mind, while waterproof varieties are available, ensure it’s suitable for kitchen use to resist heat and moisture. This cost-effective solution can quickly transform your kitchen without undergoing a complete renovation.

Ceramic Tiles

ceramic tiles

With a myriad of glaze finishes and colors to choose from, ceramic tiles continue to hold their own as a popular choice. Being easy to clean and maintain, they are a practical choice for the kitchen. Their hardness and durability allow them to withstand heat and water, ensuring longevity.

Shapes and installation patterns provide room for creativity and personalization – from square to hexagonal tiles, stacked or staggered installation methods. Interestingly, the tiles can also be painted over, providing a quick refresh option if desired. With cost-effectiveness coming into play, ceramic tiles become a meaningful consideration for a counter to ceiling backsplash.

Terracotta Tile

terracotta tile

Originally developed in the Mediterranean region, terracotta tiles are a longstanding favorite for kitchen back splashes thanks to their warm, earthy tones.

These clay-based tiles come in a variety of shapes and sizes, offering great flexibility for personalized design.

The fired finish of terracotta is naturally resistant to water, making it durable and ideal for wet spaces like kitchens.

Due to its porous nature, this tile choice does require sealing to keep it pristine, particularly in high-use areas.

Whether seeking a rustic charm or a modern spin on classic styles, terracotta offers a unique blend of versatility and character.

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