How to Make Your Own Brick Backsplash With Drywall Mud
When your budget does not allow for a brick veneer backsplash, but your kitchen desperately needs some color and texture on the wall, consider creating a faux brick backsplash using drywall compound and paint. Create a moderately sized textured backsplash that resembles brick veneer for under $50. For inspiration, look at examples of brick backsplashes in home improvement magazines, kitchen remodel photos and online until you find the pattern and color of bricks you want to replicate.
Wipe down the wall with an all-purpose cleaner and a cloth to remove any grease, food particles and dust from the surface.
Use 1-inch painter's tape to section off the backsplash area. Anything inside the tape edges will become the backsplash, so use a measuring tape and a level as needed to define the borders. Put down newspapers or a drop cloth to protect the surface below.
Paint the area with a roller brush for even coverage. Choose a paint color based on what you want to show through the finished brick backsplash as grout, which is usually an off-white, buff or soft gray color. Allow the paint to dry completely.
Sketch out the pattern for the faux bricks on a piece of graph paper. Go with a simple horizontal brick layout, known as a running bond pattern, for the easiest approach, or create a more complicated design with a basket weave or herringbone pattern. Once you have a pattern you like, sketch it on the wall with a pencil. Use a ruler to help make straight lines.
Put the 1/4-inch painters' tape over the pencil marks to designate the grout lines. Press on the tape to eliminate any air bubbles.
Apply the drywall compound with a small trowel. Spread the compound from 1/8 inch to 1/4 inch thick and smooth it out. Create a brick-like texture by pressing a sponge into the compound and pulling it back out repeatedly to mimic a rough brick surface. Or, press the trowel lightly into the compound and pull it straight back out to create small raised areas on the surface. A third way is to use your fingers to create small divots.
Pull the 1/4-inch painter's tape up immediately to create the grooves between the faux bricks. The grout-colored paint should show through. Allow the compound to dry for 24 hours.
Reapply painter's tape to the grout lines, pressing firmly to seal. Paint a color-tinted primer over the faux bricks to seal the drywall compound and prepare the surface to receive paint. Allow it to dry for approximately two hours.
Paint the faux bricks in any style, color and pattern you choose. Choose a brick red with a lot of brown and gray or go with a lighter brick in gray, tan and yellow. Use a combination of brushes and sponges to create a realistic brick backsplash. Pull up the painter's tape and allow the paint to dry completely.
Preserve the faux brick backsplash by applying a clear matte finish sealant with a roller brush. Allow the sealant to dry for 24 hours.
- While brick sizes can vary, a standard brick is 8-by-2 1/4 inches.
- Do several practice runs when it comes to painting the faux bricks. Use a piece of wood and different sponges, brushes, paints and sealants to come up with the most realistic reproduction of bricks. When you are confident in your painting abilities, tackle the faux bricks on the backsplash.
- Keep the room well ventilated when you are working with drywall compound, paint and sealants.
Jenna Marie has been editing and writing professionally since 1993. Her editing background includes newspapers, magazines and books, and her articles have appeared in print and on websites such as Life123 and AccessNurses. She specializes in writing about parenting, frugal living, real estate, travel and food. Her nonfiction book was published in 2008. She earned a Bachelor of Science in journalism from Utah State University.
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