Kitchen Tile Trends

March 9, 2021

At Ideal Homes and Neighborhoods we believe that the kitchen is the heart of the home. So, after a year of tumult and multiple challenges, it comes as no surprise to us that many designers are placing extra emphasis on creating kitchen environments that truly represent the importance of functionality, progress and individuality, coupled with a sense of comfort and a nurturing atmosphere.

The most popular countertops in Ideal Homes & Neighborhood kitchens are quartz in either 2 or 3 cm slabs. Laminates have also evolved with designer patterns and are still a viable, affordable countertop option. While you occasionally see designers use full slabs of stone on the backsplash, tile is largely the material of choice for that area behind the countertops to be able to add color, dimension, and pattern.

Tile styles range from the always popular white subway, with all its size, style and color variations, to vintage and cut stone mosaics, unusual shapes in a variety of styles and materials, beautiful hand painted tiles from all over the world as well as the recent trend of painted concrete tiles. Ideal Homes & Neighborhoods offers many different tile options with the durability and affordability of ceramic with a vast array of patterns, textures, and more.

These are some of the kitchen tile designs trending for 2021.


While gray and white have been the palette of choice for the last several years, designers frequently bring other colors into play in the backsplash. Although often overlooked as a color for the kitchen in the past, blue has long been recognized as one of the most relaxing colors; especially, when a lighter, almost pastel shade is used. When coupled with white or another light neutral color, whether the additional color is in the tile itself or in the cabinetry, the wall or the kitchen fittings, it’s hard to find a more relaxing and cheerful environment. There are many blue and white patterned tiles available and solid blue tiles come in a variety of shapes and designs.


Large backsplash areas are a good way to make a kitchen look larger than it is and has been a growing design trend over the past couple of years. Depending on the proximity of the kitchen cabinets to the backsplash area, as well as the presence of vent hoods, some designers have extended the use of tile all the way up to the ceiling. Others have used backsplash tile as design elements on at least part of the wall or walls for the entire length of the kitchen.


Contrasting, bold and two-tone kitchens have been growing in popularity for the past several years, and 2021 is proving to be no exception. This look often consists of extremely dark or bright colors used against white or other light neutral colors and can be used in a monochromatic or patterned way, especially against plain surfaces. Traditional black and white patterns are especially popular when used with a tile having a minimalist design. In addition, tiles with contrasting colors used in a geometric pattern can add a sense of sophistication to either a kitchen wall or floor.


Although it’s been both in and out of trend in the past decade, industrial design is back this year, especially for those attempting to give a Victorian or urban look to their home. Typically used in a more spacious kitchen, industrial design can also be employed to great effect in a smaller area. Traditional rectangular and subway tiles lend themselves to this look, as do simple hexagonal patterns. The use of metallic tiles, such as those made from copper or stainless steel, in pretty much any type of pattern is also ideal for industrial design.


Actually, there is no limit to the options that allow you to stretch your imagination. Love the look of hardwoods, but don’t want to maintain them in your kitchen? Choose one of the ceramic wood look-alikes or a luxury vinyl tile that you can’t tell from the real thing.

Speaking of LVT, it also comes in stone and tile looks that are much more affordable than the real thing and super easy to maintain.

Limited budget but looking for a designer backsplash? Choose a reliable subway tile, but install it in a stacked, vertical or herringbone pattern. Here are 12 different pattern ideas. Still looking for something truly eye-catching and custom? Limit the area, and the cost, by installing a show stopping design behind the cooktop and something more subdued on the rest of the backsplash.

In short, there are literally no limits to the ways you can express yourself through tile in your kitchen and on your budget.

Erin Yarbrough

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