Antique tile turned into wallpaper

If you didn’t catch it, we were recently featured on the home renovation show In With The Old, on Magnolia Network. I’ve been doing a deep dive into each space we tackled and right now it’s the kitchen. I’ve been getting a lot of questions about the kitchen tile, but guess what?! It’s actually wallpaper! It sounds simple, but there’s actually a long back story to it.

Here’s how it goes!


Click here for all the before and after photos from the home renovation
See the full kitchen renovation here
Read about the kitchen cabinets here
Click here to read more about the kitchen hardware.
If you’re interested in seeing the oven, click here.

Antique tile turned into wallpaper

When I first began scheming about our kitchen, I knew I wanted to make the oven and hood a big focal point of the space. It’s the wall you look at when you walk into the room and there is so much potential for a wow moment. It was a long journey to get there and eventually landed on something but it wasn’t easy. Here’s how it went!


I began thinking of how to tell the story of our Scandinavian background into the space and landed on what I thought was going to be a really fun angle. Have you ever seen those antique Swedish fireplaces? They are called kakelugnar and you can read about the history here. They used an innovative way of heating a room cloaked in gorgeous tile. The tiles were often very decorative. I was particularly drawn to this one on the left:

I loved the yellow, the florals, that green! The amazing 3D tile on the right were also a top inspiration for me though I couldn’t find them anywhere. They’re so so beautiful!

Kakelugn for the kitchen hood

Well, I stumbled on a ton of beautiful looking kakelugnar and instead of using it to heat our house, I thought it would be cool to take the tile concept and move it onto the wall as our oven hood. It would serve a similar appearance but in a different way. I immediately began thinking of how to make it happen. I researched antique tile, custom tile, DIY tile, friends, family, you name it. There are some companies that sell old kakelugnar, but they are hard to get or very expensive (and talk about shipping to the US!).

I then looked into getting custom tile made to mimic the look. I waited for weeks to get a custom tile back and I wasn’t thrilled with the results. It would have cost me more than antique tile too so I had to go for a plan b.

Heres’ the direction I was heading in.

Antique tile

As you might recall, my grandparents had this lovely French tile in their kitchen and I looked into replicating the look and then applying the tile onto the kitchen hood to achieve the same idea as the kakelugn.

No go. Couldn’t find the right tile anywhere.

Antique Portuguese tile

I began searching around for antique tile out of Portugal, France, Tunisia, anywhere where there is a history of tile and stumbled on the iconic Solar.

I found two gorgeous tiles that I loved and ordered samples.

I love them so so much, but I was worried about making a huge investment in so little time because of the timeline of the show’s schedule.

Here’s the quick mock up that I put together. 

Antique tile for backsplash

I mean, it would be A LOT of tile and A LOT of money!

SO, due to time and money, Jane on our team took a picture of one of the tiles and turned it into a repeat pattern that you can find in our wallpaper shop. I ordered it on the prepasted removeable smooth option because it has a shiny surface and it cleans off super easy for backslashes.

Antique tile as wallpaper

And you know what? It works great and it fools everyone who walks in! I wasn’t necessarily looking to fool people with it, but unless someone is looking closely, they can’t tell.

Pat became an expert wallpaper installer because of this show as you can see here. It’s the pre-pasted wallpaper, which she says she prefers over the peel and stick and non-pasted traditional.

What do you think?

So there you go! The Plan C wallpaper. Ha! And what next you might ask? Oh, I’ve got a new plan. It might take some time to execute, but I’m going to take all the time I need now!

Let me know what you think!

You can find the full kitchen renovation here
All the before and afters of our renovation here
Our custom kitchen table here
Kitchen hardware
A fridge made to look like a cabinet
Kitchen cupboards
Ilve oven review


  1. I love your kitchen redesign!! Especially the mix of details & prints, it was that beautiful tile that drew me in!! It’s such a beauty & felt familiar, when I saw the print was from Solar I got excited you were showcasing a Portuguese company. What a genius idea of making wallpaper from a tile print!! But being portuguese I feel mixed emotions knowing you’re selling a direct copy of their print as wallpaper without mention the print is designed by Solar. I may be overstepping & there may be an understanding between all brands about giving credit where due. I love seeing my 2nd home be in the spotlight these years, but I’ve also seen our beautiful culture, art & design be overlooked or mimicked for years w.o clear credit to the Portuguese creators. Like I said I’ve followed along & have been inspired by your work for years, simply voicing a small concern.

    • Totally hear you. I researched and found that Solar doesn’t own this design since it’s antique and there’s no copyright on it. Thanks for reaching out!


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