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Airstream Kitchen Backspash - Smart and Stylish Design

Saturday, August 5, 2017


Adding a backsplash that can travel is both practical and aesthetically pleasing.

Carolyn Goodell is once again guest blogging.  She and her husband, Jackson, have remodeled a 1974 Airstream that is currently available for lodging through Air BnB in Livingston, Montana.  Their finished project is stunning and has created a welcome space for guests at The Last Best Camper.

One big perk that comes with owning a camper or RV is that you have a kitchen to utilize rather than depending on coals in a fire or a small camping stove.  This allows for more creativity and flexibility when planning and creating meals while camping, especially when cooking for a family or large group.  However, it also means more messes, more dishes, and more maintenance.  When renovating our Airstream we took one step to help with clean up and to help make our kitchen last longer.


Many camper walls are coated with vinyl coverings, wallpaper, or in our case bare aluminum.  Cooking any type of meal on a stove top that splatters can cause a mess quickly and builds up fast in a tiny space.  When we decided to paint the interior of our Airstream white, we knew that this would not be a good combination with a full kitchen where we encourage people to cook their own food.  After doing some research we found that it would not be as hard as we had originally thought to install a tile backsplash.  This seemed to like the perfect solution.  It would be durable, easy to wipe clean and give our kitchen a more finished high-end look.
           

The backsplash of white tiles with black contrast add an interesting detail along the kitchen space.


Because tile that is caulked into place will come loose with the vibrations of a camper, we needed something that had some flexibility in case we wanted to travel with the Airstream.  We came across ceramic tile caulk and were told that does just that and can also match any grout color that you may want.  We went with black to give a high contrast to our white walls and tiles.  We found that this product does the trick but is hard to clean off when installing, especially when dealing with small tiles.  It seems like normal caulk would work just fine for this purpose as well.  It just may have a different look to it.

In order to secure the tiles to the wall, we used contact cement by Dap.  It seems to be holding up so far, but it was a challenge on our curved walls as it does not have much body to it.  This would work well on a typical camper wall that is flat, but in an Airstream anything "typical" goes out the window.  Next time we would use E-6000 Adhesive which is more like a glue and gives us some flexibility with wall angles.  Overall we are very happy with the results that we were able to achieve and we think they will be long lasting.

Weldwood contact cement helps apply tiles that can take traveling vibrations in an Airstream.

In addition to choosing materials for installation, keep in mind that the tile size may play a role as well.  For example, larger tiles will not work on a curved surface while similar tiles may mean more cutting when surrounding windows or other features.  We recommend getting a few samples and evaluating how each style/size would work in your space.  Once your backsplash is installed, it only takes a quick swipe with a damp sponge to clean up any oil or sauce splatters, making clean up a breeze, and allowing you more time to get outside and explore!

The Last Best Camper has eye catching detail throughout with beautiful craftsmanship.  Notice the Montana State cutting board/counter extension at the end of the counter above.

Jackson Goodell is the photographer for all of the photos shared in this post. You can view more of Jackson's artistic vision at Jackson Goodell Photography.  He is currently focusing his talents on real estate photography in Montana.  

If you are looking for a unique place for lodging in Montana, book a visit at The Last Best Camper.  Jackson's photographs showcase the craftsmanship or their restored Air BnB.  Their sustainable and eco-friendly approach to living makes their rental a unique and responsible place for travelers.


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