The type of backsplash you choose for your kitchen remodel makes a huge difference in the final look and feel. My whole project so far has been one of sleek lines recessed lines, stainless steel, and modern lighting. Wanting to achieve some balance, I chose something of the earth itself for my backsplash- River Pebble Tiles from StrataStones.net. (Updated September 2021, StrataStones.net is no long in business but similar product can be found on Amazon.com that we recommend.
StrataStones offers a truly unique offering of pebble tiles all pulled from river beds and put together in 12×12 tiles in Bali. How awesome is that?
First off, every color they offer is completely natural and earthy- obviously. But their color selection spans the spectrum from cool blues and greens, to blacks, to whites, and mixtures. Their variety of sizes, orientations, and elevations allowed us to pick the one that felt best to us- a polished, natural mix. See it on their store page here.
Applying Thin Set Mortar for Tile
The tile came delivered by our lovely postal carrier lady. Let’s just say Matt went out to her truck to unload it for her. She is NOT built to carry 3 boxes of, well, rocks up to our garage. We want her on our good side!
Anyway once we checked out the boxes, we brought out a container of prepared Thin Set Mortar and a Mortar spreader with 1/4″ teeth. One small section at a time, we didn’t cover the granite (brave) and started slapping it on the wall. No real rhyme or reason- just enough to closely match a 12″ x 12″ square.
Installing River Pebble Tile
What is nice about the StataStone Pebble Tile is that its not a box of rocks, but a box of rocks adhered to a sturdy mesh backing just like other small tiles you might see at the big box retailer or tile store. With the very first tile, we were cutting out stones that would be in the way of the outlets, switches, covers, and against our kitchen cabinetry.
Below is a bad picture of me holding up a 3-up set of pebbles that we will install as necessary around the outlet covers and switches.
Because river pebbles don’t come in predefined sizes (go figure) piecing them together around the objects and fitting them up against the cabinets and down against the countertop is a creative undertaking. Because everything is so natural, there is great room for uneven stones, extra space where grout will be added, and problem areas- which have so far all looked totally natural.
The next steps involved with finishing this river pebble tile backsplash is grouting. Check out our final reveal with video demo here!
Check out options on Amazon.com since StrataStones is no longer online.
This was not a paid post. My own opinions were used based on my perceptions and experience. Thank you to StrataStones who provided the product for review.