It's easy to see why so many homeowners and interior designers opt for marble kitchen backsplashes — the natural stone is a timeless beauty. It's a versatile material that, depending on what it's paired with, can lean modern, traditional, or even rustic. Yet, as is often the case, good looks come at a price, especially if you want to purchase a large marble slab for your kitchen remodel. However, cost-conscious renovators fear not — quality marble tile is an equally lovely and budget-friendly option.
If the bottom line for your culinary renovation is top of mind, you should know that according to Fixr.com, it typically costs between $600 and $2,000 for a professional marble backsplash installation. But know that if you choose to go the marble tile and/or DIY route, you can save a bit of money.
Scroll on for 20 stunning ideas that will convince you a marble kitchen backsplash is well worth the investment.
1. Welcome vintage decor.
Yes, there's a lot going on here, but the London-based company deVOL Kitchens pulls it off perfectly, and we wouldn't expect anything less. The design pros go all-in with bold hunter green cabinets and walls, brass hardware, and statement-making marble that is tempered by old-world fixtures and vintage artwork. Bravo.
2. Commit to a color.
Sarah Sherman Samuel selected eye-catching green tweed marble to elevate this white kitchen. We love how the green herringbone floor tile makes the space even more unique and echoes the verdant marble hue. A butcher block island and brass pendant lights are the perfect finishing touch.
3. Take it all the way to the top.
We are so not mad at this understated and perfectly executed kitchen by Studio Lifestyle. Sometimes more really is ... more. Calacatta marble countertops seamlessly transition into a ceiling-height backsplash and range hood. The muted cabinet color and lack of pendant lights ensures that the marble backdrop will be the star of the show.
4. Add a shelf.
Forgo upper cabinets and add a diminutive shelf to display everyday items as Catherine Kwong did in this picturesque scene. The countertops, backsplash, and lengthy shelf — all fashioned from the same white marble — balance the black cabinets and wall sconces beautifully. And to top it all off, gray textured walls, dark hardwood floors, and brass hardware work together to create a Scandi minimalist vibe that we never tire of.
5. Opt for subway tile.
Marble subway tile applied in a traditional offset pattern is a great, cost-effective alternative to a slab. This look by Studio McGee is still glamorous, yet slightly more industrial. Brass wall sconces, white Tolix counter stools, and open wood shelves add a bit of rustic charm.
6. Frame it in an alcove.
Consider creating a luxe marble alcove that simultaneously showcases your cooktop and hides the range hood. Calla Cane chose flat-front, white cabinetry, slim hardware, and simple lighting to ensure the marble backsplash would be the main attraction.
7. Keep the edges unfinished.
Create texture and subtle pattern by installing your marble subway tile backsplash in a vertical herringbone pattern. This cook space showcased on Mandarin Stone left the edges of the Carrara marble tile exposed to create a unique visual effect.
8. Embrace shades of gray.
There is a reason why gray is such a popular kitchen color, and jaw-dropping designs like this one by Tahma Smith are the reason why. The marble island and the expansive wall of bookmatched gray marble behind the barely noticeable cooktop create an undeniable design moment in this culinary space. The cool, blueish shade of gray showcased on the cabinets blends in seamlessly, separated only by the thin brass detailing below the the countertop. Swoon!
9. Go dark.
The dark marble used in this modern kitchen by Juma Architects really amps up the drama and imparts a moody vibe that we love. The warm white wall paint complements the veining of the natural stone while the light wood finish of the cabinets warms it up. The brass faucet is the icing on the cake.
10. Create contrast.
In this San Francisco stunner by Nicole Hollis a black-topped island and upper cabinets are the perfect complement to the white marble countertops and backsplash. The shaker style bottom cabinets and glass-front uppers soften the stark contrast of the black and white palette.
11. Just add wood.
Marble is hard and cold so it's important to pair it with other materials and finishes that add softness and warmth. Enter natural wood. Sanders & King clearly got the memo as seen in this modern kitchen design flaunting rich wood cabinets and lush velvet upholstery.
12. Show off dramatic veining.
If you're planning to splurge on a luxe material such as marble for your kitchen backsplash, than you might as well really go for it. Elizabeth Roberts did just that in this minimal setup, allowing the bold reddish veining of the natural stone to be the undeniable star of the show. The green lower cabinets and light wood flooring are a nice complement.
13. Focus on one small area.
Instead of lining all of the kitchen walls with marble, follow the lead of Garrett and Cathy of The Grit and Polish and spotlight just one section instead, like the area behind the cooktop. It'll add definition and stylish flair to the cooking area, and it's definitely a more budget-friendly option than creating a full backsplash. Plus, it will prevent food splashes and stains from discoloring the wall.
14. Treat it as artwork.
A backsplash shouldn't be limited to ho-hum wall tile or a standard slab of stone. Think of it as an opportunity to create an artistic moment in your kitchen. That's certainly the case when it comes to the wall space behind the stove in this cook space by The Kitchen Studio. The backsplash display includes inticately cut marble and brass inlay resulting in functional wall decor that doubles as art.
15. Create a backdrop for open shelving.
Perhaps you want your marble backsplash to play more of a supporting role in your kitchen design. That's okay, too. This black-and-white cook space featured by Jen of The Effortless Chic shows us how it's done using a natural stone with subtle veining as the backdrop for a trio of open shelving displaying a collection of ceramics and decorative accessories.
16. Embrace drama.
Sometimes, marble isn't for the faint of heart, especially if it showcases bold natural veining that's guaranteed to turn heads. The dramatic marble backsplash in this kitchen belonging to Becca of June and Blue acts as the star of the show, with the checkerboard floor tile and vintage-inspired range coming in at a close second.
17. Warm it up with beige cabinets.
Perhaps you want to wrap in top-to-bottom neutrals throughout your kitchen, with the help of a marble backsplash. To make things look truly airy and to bring in the tiniest hint of warmth to your space, pair cream cabinetry with a white marble backsplash. Monika Hibbs even passed over stainless steel in her kitchen, going with a cream stove to tie the whole look together.
18. Pair with lustrous brass.
There's something about the combination of marble and brass that looks so elegant and glamorous. Arent & Pyke went with brass cabinet fronts to accompany the marble backsplash and countertops in this kitchen, and the result is head-turning to say the least.
19. Consider geometric details.
To kick up your marble backsplash a notch, forgo traditional grout and subway tile and opt for a geometric pattern with a brass inlay instead, à la this setup by Reena Sotropa. For something similar, you can always turn to hexagon marble tile to give your backsplash a shapely look.
20. Add a little shimmer.
We've covered slabs, subway tile, and even geometric tile, but have you considered something a bit smaller like marble mosaic tile? Not only does it offer added texture and visual interest, but it can add a little shimmer and shine as demonstrated in this culinary space by Sarah of Room for Tuesday.