$40 Carrara Marble Herringbone Inspired Backsplash Tutorial



I don't know about you but I have been swooning over back splashes and flooring in a herringbone pattern and Carrara Marble. However, with such a high price point for even faux Carrara Marble I new I had to figure out an inexpensive way to achieve this high end look. Here are some of my pinspirations: 



Now I know this is not perfect, I am an artist, not an engineer. Precision and measurements are not my forte and the 8 month pregnant belly was a little in the way while laying this. But for $40, I still think it came out great!





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I purchased peel and stick vinyl tiles from Home Depot in a Faux Carrara Marble finish. $30 for the whole box and I only used about a third of it for my space. The vinyl tile cutter is sooooo worth the $29 even if you never use it again. Scissors and hand cutting just won't give you straight enough cuts and also your hand may fall off. I think these tiles are to thick to use a vinyl cutting knife but I never attempted. It is very important you use the adhesive even though they are peel and stick. I had to learn this the hard way. Despite a grueling 2 hour 4am session, I ended the day with almost every single one fallen off. It was a sad day, let's not talk about it. Just use the adhesive and trust me! Also, you can not use regular tile grout!!!! It will stick to the tiles, you must use a kind made for vinyl. I love this product from Blue Hawk, simple and easy to use. Did the job perfectly! I only used a third of a $10 tub.

I cut the tiles in half and then 2 inch sections using a level. I made these marks on every.single.darn.tile. It was not a fun process but I got through it. 


Then put the baby for a nap, sent the boy outside to play, made a cup of coffee, turned on Flipping Out and got to cutting!


Yes, I did want to give up a few times, but looking at my kitchen as I type this I am sooooo glad I didn't!

I laid out my pattern on the counter at first just to make sure I was doing it right. When I had the pattern down I started to lay them. 



Now here are some helpful tips and tricks I learned along the way. The method in which I used to make my edge cuts is not very technical and there are probably some people out their shaking their heads. I didn't research that part at all and so at 4am this is what I came up with. It worked for me and all my right-brain-ed-ness!  


I took some sheets of printer paper and held up to the area I wanted to fill in. I pressed firmly along the tiles already in place to make a crease (can you see the crease in the picture?) Then I laid all the pieces I would need and drew a pencil line where I would need to make my cuts.


Then took the one that needed to be placed first, cut, held it up to make sure the cut was accurate, and if it was I used the adhesive and applied to the wall. 

                                 


I laid one by one until that section was filled in. I found it easier to lay the entire pattern using the full tiles and then go back in and fill in all of the areas needing cuts. 




For the outlets, I just held them up and drew a line. This was a lot less precise and I had to make a lot of correction cuts. 












After everything was laid I grouted and caulked all the edges. For the grout just follow the directions on the tub and watch you tube grouting videos!


Hope you love it as much as I do!! 




15 comments

  1. I LOVE this (and your blog!) I cannot wait until my husband and I are to the point in our lives where we can buy a home and invest in projects like this! :)

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    1. Elizabeth, I was trying so hard to make this temporary for all of the renters out there. (We have rented for 8 years so I understand the struggle is real!) But without the adhesive the tiles wouldn't stick. Hopefully you will get to do something like this soon!! Would love to see pictures if you do! Thank you for looking at my blog!

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  2. That was really a brilliant trick, Rachel! I can’t believe you came up and did this all on your own. Talk about resourcefulness and creativity combined. I bet that saved you a lot by taking the DIY route, instead of buying a customized one. Thanks for sharing! :-)

    Debra Newman @ UCS Granite

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  3. Absolutely fantastic! Thanks for sharing!

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  4. Absolutely fantastic! Thanks for sharing!

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  5. I purchased 1 of these tiles today at Home Depot just to see what it would look like in my kitchen...I may have my husband convinced ;)

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  6. Oh also, where did you purchase the tile cutter because the only one I saw was $49 at HD?

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    1. Thanks for your question MaryAnn, so I did not include the price of the cutter since it is not vital to complete the project and since I purchased one I view it as a tool investment that I will use in multiple other projects. However, I have good news, after completing a few other vinyl flooring projects I actually think a really good box cutting knife and a metal straight edge ruler will give you the most precise cuts and be easiest in your hands. Let me know if there is anything else I can help you with!!

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  7. LOVE THIS!My best work is found through major determination as well (: Do you mind if I share this on Pinterest??

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    1. Absolutely!! If you lightly tap the photo a Pinterest icon will pop up in the top left hand corner for easy pinning!! Thank you for your kind words!

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  8. I'm tediously speechless YOU DID A EXCELLENT! WONDERFUL JOB!!... my $24.00 worth of this vinyl I installed it to go for whole slab look, I sealed the seams and gave it 3 coats of QUICK & SHINE and VOILA!!! People drop their jaws when they find out is just inexpensive vinyl floor.

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    1. Thank you so much for your comment and that's awesome!!! I'd love to see it!

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