Step 3: Build a Template

build a template
Photo: William P. Fuller
«»
Using a circular saw, cut 3-inch strips of 1/4-inch plywood. Using painter's tape, secure them to the wall to form an outline of the area where the backsplash will go. Be sure to push the plywood tight to the counter and the cabinets.

Position shorter strips between the long pieces, using them to indicate the parameters of outlets and other fixtures on the wall. Wherever the counters continue past the upper cabinets, leave the template 1 inch shorter than the counters to account for the trim that will finish the raw edge of the panel (leaving a small reveal).

Using a hot glue gun, attach all the pieces together. Be sure to mark any that represent specific cutouts. Also indicate which end of the template is the top.
Ask TOH users about Backsplashes

Contribute to This Story Below

    Tools List

    • hot glue gun
      Hot Glue Gun

    • four-foot level
      4-Foot Level

    • circular saw
      Circlar Saw

    • jigsaw
      Jigsaw fitted with metal cutting blade

    • drill
      Drill/Driver fitted with with 3/8-inch masonry drill bit

    • utility knife
      Utility Knife

    • caulk gun
      Caulk Gun

    • hammer with nailset
      Hammer and Nail Set

    Shopping List

    1. Solid-Surface Wall Paneling. Look for 1/4-inch-thick material, available in large sheets at home centers or through distributors. Get the widest sheets you can find to minimize joints.

    2. All Purpose Kitchen Cleaner, such as Formula 409 or Fantastik, to clean grease off the wall and prepare it for adhesive.

    3. 1/4-Inch Plywood, aka luaun, to make the template.

    4. Painter's Tape

    5. Construction Adhesive to adhere the backsplash to the wall.

    6. Tack Cloth

    7. Heavy-Duty Double-Stick Tape to hold the panel in place while the adhesive sets.

    8. All-Purpose Caulk to seal seams between panels and against cabinets. Get a color to match the solid-surface material, or else use clear.

    9. 1x3 Pine Lumber to cap any exposed edges.

    10. 1 1/2-Inch Finish Nails

    11. Paint to coat any molding detail to match the backsplash material.