Copper backsplashes are very attractive if you like the color of copper. Copper is a soft metal which can pose some problems, but overall it's a good material for many reasons. The price of copper is quite high but the fact that it will last for a very long time, and the designs are numerous, are good reasons to consider copper.
Copper backsplashes come in a variety of designs. The most affordable option is the stamped panels. These panels are easy to install but precise cuts need to be made to avoid ruining the panels. The price of the panels, around $30 per square foot, would make any mistakes costly.
Sheet metal in copper is another option. The sheets are fabricated by skilled craftsman and require the more expensive sheet material. The labor to fabricate, and install, the copper is also quite expensive. Any mistakes made in the process can be costly but fortunately if you hire a contractor to install your copper it will be on him to absorb the cost.
Sheet copper backsplashes can also have a wide variety of textures. The hand hammered design is made by hammering the copper to create small dimples in the surface. Another option is a brushed finish. The brushed finish can be random or have a specific pattern, such as a swirl pattern.
If you can think of a design it can probably be done with copper sheets. All you need to do is find a skilled craftsman who has the proper knowledge to complete your project.
A copper tile backsplash is an easy to install choice. Tiles also come in a variety of finishes. If you want to have a little copper in the design of your backsplash you can add a copper tile here and there. Copper tiles go great with copper sinks. Having a copper sink, the kitchen almost begs for more copper, either in the backsplash area or on the countertops.
Copper tile backsplashes are an affordable option as well but the price is still on the premium side. Expect to pay $25 or more per square foot for the tiles. Incorporating copper tiles in with ceramic or stone tile will give some copper but not overwhelm the design or your bank account. Borders and moldings in copper are also available.
Faux copper is also an option. Although this is not real copper, it has the look and feel of real copper. It comes on rolls and is very easy to install. The faux copper rolls are very affordable and can be done by anyone, plus if you make a mistake it's not the end of the world, or your bank account.
Copper backsplashes do form a patina over time and if you dislike the look of copper when it ages you can have a protective finish applied. I personally like the look of copper as it ages, it gives an authentic look to the metal. Copper does not turn green inside a house, it simply darkens with age from oxidation. Copper only turns green when exposed to high levels of moisture, like on the outside of a home.
Copper is also susceptible to acids and can make a shiny spot on the metal if left on for longer than a minute. You can lessen this by waxing the copper at regular intervals, which will also slow down the patina process. If acids are left on the surface it will turn the metal back to it's original shine, and be impossible to match without having to totally refinish the backsplash.
Over all if you're in the market for a different backsplash material that will be the talk of the town, copper is the way to go. You also have the added benefit of having a material that will last a lifetime, or two.