The kitchen is the heart of the home and deserves time and thought put into the styling process.
One idea is to add brick slips to the walls to give extra character and a touch of style to the room.
Introduction to Brick Slips
Exposed brick is a timeless and classic look, that has recently been reinvented with use in many interiors, and not just industrial style either.
Brick slips are the force behind this, as thin cuts of brick to be tiled onto walls, they make the look accessible to be retrofit into virtually any home.
We think of tiles being in bathrooms and kitchens, and the kitchen is the room in the house that we generally think the most about styling – as there are choices to be made, from units to worktops and appliances to lighting.
Therefore it makes most sense to look at how brick slips work in kitchens.
Considering how ceramic tiles are used in kitchens, brick slips can be used in a few more ways and there’s a couple of things to consider too.
The simplest way to include brick slips is to do a feature wall, this may be in the dining area of a kitchen diner, or simply a wall not taken up by cupboards and appliances. This not only means you get more brickwork, but also an easier installation with fewer obstacles.
A popular way to use bricks is to complement the units by putting the brick slips on the same wall. In an ideal world you would tile the whole wall before units and cooker hood etc are in place to keep the authenticity.
However, this does cost a lot of money for tiles that don’t see the light of day behind cupboards. Instead most people simply cut the tiles around the cupboards, but often still tile behind an extractor fan to keep that area consistent.
You can also use them as you would a traditional ceramic tile- simply as a backsplash up to a certain height. The one consideration here is that if you’re trying to recreate brickwork, you don’t want people to see the back edge of the brick slips which gives it away as a tile. The ways to cover this up are to use a piece of timber to transition to the wall behind, or simply create a 45 degree angle with the mortar from the brick to the wall.
Suitable behind a stove and sink
The main logistical question involved in using brick slips in a kitchen is the concern about ruining them with food spatters and water.
Behind the sink, it’s a good idea to ‘seal’ them (only once they’re completely dry from installation), this just helps repel water droplets that may splash onto them.
Behind a stove however there is generally more cleaning to be done. Whilst they can be cleaned with household cleaners, it can be an annoying surface. The brick sealant will do a good job in keeping the brick from staining with most things, but another option to make cleaning even easier is installing a Perspex or glass screen above the hob- the flat surface will be much more straight forward than getting a cloth into brick creasing to remove that Bolognese.
In the most important room in the house, embrace the colour and texture that you can get with brick slips and fit it into your design- think about the logistics and the style and you’ll end up with something to be proud of.