Lately you’ve been thinking that your kitchen seems a bit dated. Although you dream about designing and installing a brand new modernized kitchen, like many people these days, you may not be able to afford a complete kitchen remodel. Well, you basically have two choices: You could just decide to live with it the way it is for now, or you could try an inexpensive do it yourself (DIY) update to bring your kitchen decor into this decade.

Before you start ripping up floors or taking down cabinets, it is important to understand both the costs and skill level required for the project you choose. Flooring and cabinetry can be quite expensive, even for the handiest DIY remodeler. If you are looking for a simple and inexpensive update, then these projects are probably best left for another time. However, a simple project such as updating the backsplash could be just what your kitchen needs to give it a whole new appearance.

Depending on your skill level and your budget, the materials and methods you could choose from to update your backsplash are seemingly endless. More traditional options would include materials such as ceramic tile or wallpaper. However, if you are looking for something more modern, perhaps glass tile or stainless steel would be your best bet.

Many modern kitchen backsplash designs use glass tile as a way to add an accent color with a bit of texture to the room. The tiles range in size from the very small (about 1 inch squares) to much larger subway tiles (about 3 inch by 6 inch rectangles). The larger tiles would work well if your backsplash is quite large. However, if you are working with a small space, the smaller square tiles would be your best choice. Either way, glass tiles would work well with existing wood or laminate cabinetry.

Stainless steel is another material that is very popular in modern kitchens. You’ve probably seen all of the newer appliances that are available with this finish. But if new appliances just aren’t in your budget, you could try updating your backsplash with this modern finish. Similar to glass tiles, stainless steel tiles are available in a variety of shapes and sizes. This option would also work well with existing wood or laminate cabinetry. Furthermore, as stainless steel is more neutral, it may be a better choice than colorful glass if your existing kitchen already has an extensive color palette

Either of these two options would be a great, inexpensive way to give your kitchen a fresh, modern look. However, whether you choose glass tile or stainless steel, the most important things to remember are to measure accurately before you purchase your supplies and to follow the manufacturers instructions for surface preparation and proper installation.

Also, be sure to shop around before you make your purchase. Since you’ll be doing the installation yourself, you aren’t limited to buying from expensive specialty stores. Check out the clearance aisles of larger home improvement stores, since you only need a small amount compared to someone tiling an entire floor or wall, you may find just what you’re looking for at a fraction of the original cost. Online discount outlets are always a good bet as well. Just be sure to read the fine print to make certain you understand what you’re getting, or if there are any hidden shipping or delivery charges.