Cheap Splashback for the Kitchen

The other day we looked at how we restored our stone floor to protect it from drips, drops and splashes. As we paint the rest of the kitchen we have come to a spot where splashes are more likely to happen. We are talking cooker territory, the terror of frying pans and beans that explode. Most cookers nowadays come with fancy splashbacks made of glass or tiles quarried from indigenous land of smooth bum gnomes. They come at eye watering prices and are often accompanied by fitter who comes into your home, looks at your wall and says, 'That ain't straight. Can't fit it for you if it ain't straight'. Tilers too flock to our kitchen to whistle and tot up in their heads how much they will charge us for the bath loads of grout they will need just to get one tile level. We too in our old house embraced the power of grout to get tiles straight, it looks awful. Since we have started the kitchen we have been advised by builder after builder to board the room because none of the walls are straight. We have given up pointing that the house was built somewhere between a bloke called John losing his plumb line and the advent of the knickerbockers. It is safe to say that in all this restoration work we have discovered that downstairs is older than upstairs, and that upstairs moved in around 1750. That means downstairs has walls that would make a modern brickie run for the hills. Thick isn't in it. Level they are not. Straight they will never be. So, how do we solve a problem like a crooked wall that needs a splashback? In our old house we had a narrow hallway. No matter how many times we painted it, even in the new fangled wipe away paint, it would always end up scuffed or marked until we discovered the joys of yacht varnish. Durable, hard and immensely water proof, it seals anything, repels anything and ages wonderfully. It is also great in a north facing kitchen as it bounces light around.

Cheap splashback for the kitchen

Our tin of yacht varnsih cost £8.99 and required only one coat for our splashback. It did not moan that the wall was uneven. It didn't harp on about boarding it. All we had to remember was to not to overload the brush, to make sure that we didn't make the mistake of cutting in first, cut as you go or prepare for marks from where the cutting in has started to dry. The whole job took around one hour and compared to having some tiler in who would take days to do this wall, that's value for money. Also, the tiler would expire of frustration before completing the work. The whole wall was dry within 24 hours but we waited 48 before placing the oven back to make sure it was completely hard, and sure enough whilst using the gas rings, a pan spluttered and splashed and coated the wall with tomato sauce. A damp cloth. A quick wipe and it was as good as new.

Yacht varnish can be used to seal paint work or wallpaper behind ovens

Sometimes splashbacks don't have to cost a fortune. Yacht varnish coats paint and wallpaper, giving a permanent seal. It is harder wearing than a water based varnish which will quickly erode with steam from the oven. Yes, it can yellow with age but we discovered that this effect can take up to ten years to really take hold. We however do recommend that you never use it to seal stone or brick. There is plenty out there suggesting that this is okay but it isn't, stone likes to breath and exposed brick acts in the same way, sealing it can result in damp problems. 


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