Judith Mackin

Guest Blogger

Judith Mackin

Judith Mackin is founder and creative director of Punch Inside, an interior design firm in Saint John, New Brunswick. She also owns TUCK STUDIO, a design and decor studio which opened last fall. Follow Judith @judithmackin@tuckstudio


DIY Valentine’s Day Kitchen Backsplash

Posted by Judith Mackin Monday, February 11, 2013 8:30 AM EST



 Judith created an awesome DIY backsplash (check out her step-by-step guide to create your own) that we fell head over heels for. With Valentine’s Day right around the corner, it seemed like the perfect time for a backsplash refresh. Click to see even more photos of the DIY Valentine’s Day kitchen backsplash.


With a Valentine’s Day dinner for eight in the works, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to switch out our backsplash. I asked my co-worker at punch inside, Sarah Tapley, to collaborate with me on a unique and original DIY backdrop to replace the wallpaper design that had been behind the plexiglass since we installed it last fall.


My husband offered one piece of design advice–“No pink or red hearts in the kitchen!”


Luckily, I’m not a big fan of stereotypical Valentine’s paraphernalia either, so we opted to go with a Black/White/Metallic Valentine’s theme, with just a dash of colour for effect.



  • Scissors
  • Pencil
  • Scotch Banner & Sign Paper: 1 Roll 30” x 15’, $5 at Michaels
  • Various patterned and coloured sheets of paper, .79 cents - $4 a sheet at Michaels
  • Marimekko gift wrap from Crate & Barrel
  • Measuring tape
  • Spray Paint KRYLON Sateen, Nickel. Under $6.00 at Kent’s
  • White craft glue
  • Measuring Tape
  • Utility Knife
  • Decal




STEP 1: Getting Prepped

Measure the backsplash area. Take note of the placement of plugs. Roll out your craft paper and pencil in your measurements using a measuring tape. Use a utility knife to cut your paper to fit and cut out any holes you may need for plugs.


STEP 2: Create Stencils

Cut out a stencil of whatever shape you wish for your background pattern. Use any paper (the thicker the better). Here, I drew then cut out a heart shape, and then cut smaller hearts out of the interior.




STEP 3: Spray It

Roll out your paper (outside if possible or in a well-ventilated area). Lay your stencil down, starting at one corner of your paper. Spray lightly and move quickly across your stencil (so you don’t end up with pools of paint). Wait a few seconds and then move your stencil whichever way you like to create your pattern. Wait for it to dry.


STEP 4: Cutting Hearts

Source a heart shape you like online, print it and use it as your stencil. Lay your heart stencil down and trace (on the back of your chosen patterned paper), fitting as many on the sheet as you can.




STEP 5: Assembling the Banner

When your backdrop sheet of paper is dry, bring it in and roll it out again. Lay out your hearts on your paper. Move them around to get a good sense of where you want them to go. Once you have them in the pattern and order you wish, glue them in place.




STEP 6: Personalize It

My husband, a poet, has written me many poems in our life together. I chose an excerpt from one from his third book (see above). You can send your chosen poem, phrase or words (and the size you want) to a printer to provide a decal as a pdf document. When your printer is done you will receive your decal (as seen above). This one cost less than $15 and was ready in two days. (Note: you can also stencil your own words by hand.) Map out and measure where you want your text. Peel and stick your decal.


STEP 7: The Finishing Touch

Enlist some extra hands and place your Valentine’s backsplash securely behind your plexiglass. And Voila!




Images: Sean McGrath

Flowers from Creative Designs by Beth, sit inside a ‘Love is Blind’ vase (braille) by Jessica Lertvalai available at Tuck Studio. The patina champagne bucket belonged to my husband’s late parents, given to them by their children on their 25th wedding anniversary. Vegan Cupcakes by with handmade heart decorations; cutting board with etched antlers by Swaine Street Woodworking available at Tuck Studio, vegan chocolates in foil by Denman Island Chocolate.


Click to see more gorgeous photos of this Valentine’s Day kitchen backsplash.



Topics: DIY, DIY Decor, Backsplash, Inspiration, Kitchen, Grey, Black,


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