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PROJECT 3: How To Update Your Kitchen In A Weekend

Tools you'll need for this project:

  • Screw driver
  • Tape measure
  • Level
  • Mitre saw/Power tool (such as a Dremel) or Coping Saw
  • Basin wrench
  • Plumbing Tape

Maia's shopping list:


1. Select your backsplash

A tile backsplash can add plenty of character to your kitchen. For a quick project, look for peel-and-stick varieties. Maia is using tiles made from just a thin layer of metal applied to a vinyl backing; simply peel off the covering from the back and stick it onto the wall. 

2. Prepare your walls

Before you get started, wash your walls — this ensures that the tile’s adhesive will make the best connection to your walls. Also, remove the faceplates from electrical outlets so you can tile right up to it. Next, measure the centre of the wall behind the stove — this is where you’ll begin your tile pattern to ensure it’s centred and even.

3. Tile the backsplash

Once you’re confident in your measurements, tile away! Cover the walls with as many whole tiles that will fit — then comes the tricky part. Once you reach the edges of the wall, you’ll need to trim down some tiles to fit into tighter spaces (such as the area around the electrical outlets or just on edges of the walls where a full tile won’t fit. You’ll be able to place the outlet cover directly onto the tile for a flush finish.

To trim it down, start by carefully outlining where you need to cut. Secure the metal tile to an outdoor worktable with two vice grips. For the simplest, most precise results, use a metal cutting tool on a regular Dremel.

To avoid any guessing games after the tiles have been cut, number each tile (you can write directly on the plastic covering, as that will be removed to reveal a clean tile) as well as the space on the wall where it will be placed.

Once all of your tiles are in place, it’s time for the fun part: peeling off the protective plastic shield to reveal your new backsplash!

4. Install cabinet hardware

When looking for new cabinet hardware, try to follow the general style of your current hardware to make for easy installation. In Maia’s case, she selected D-pull cabinet handles of the same dimension as the old ones so she could use the same holes to install the new handles. Then, simply remove the old handles and screw in the new ones.

Maia chose simple yet sophisticated hardware that matches the stainless steel appliances and complements the new backsplash.

5. Select your faucet

For this project, Maia chose a simple yet sleek faucet that will add character to the kitchen. (Don’t see the perfect faucet at the store? Check out the wide selection at and order one online!)

6. Install faucet

To start, turn off the water supply and drain the lines by running your faucet. When choosing your new faucet, make sure it will work well with your sink. Remember: your sink can have more holes than your faucet — but not the other way around. (If needed, you can always use a simple cover plate to cover extra holes in the sink top.)

Then, simply disconnect the old faucet and put in the new one. Be sure to use plumbing tape at each joint to avoid leaks.

Once you’ve fit the sink and its hoses through the sink’s hole, it’s time to reconnect the water. Once everything is connected, turn on your new tap — the most important test is to make sure it works!

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