How to make a background for Instagram stories: 12 life hacks in the standard story editor

Stories may soon become the main type of content on Instagram, but competition is growing along with the number of stories. You need to come up with new ideas for stories and ways to style your content to stand out.

We have already given 16 examples of text design in posts, and in this article we will offer several ideas for creating an unusual background using the standard story editor.

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How to change the background of an Instagram story

By default, in the story editor, you can shoot videos or make static stories with a background. The background can be a picture from a phone or a gradient.

To add your picture, click on the square in the lower left corner and select a photo from the gallery.

To use a gradient fill, click Create at the bottom. We’ll talk about gradient in more detail.

Create in Stories mode

Sometimes a picture or a built-in gradient may not be enough for a spectacular story. How else can you transform the background using the editor?

Life hacks for creating a background for stories

Solid background

Sometimes you may need a simple solid color background, for example, to emphasize text. First you need to add a picture from the gallery as a background (it is written above how). Then go to the drawing tool – the wavy line icon.

How to make a plain background in Instagram Stories

We select the leftmost marker icon, and at the bottom we select the desired color, for example, green. Or you can use the eyedropper tool.

How to fill the background of an Instagram story with one color

Then we pinch any place in the photo with our finger and hold it until the background becomes solid. In the same way, you can change the color, if you change your mind – select another from the palette and again pinch the screen with your finger until the color has changed.

Now you can add the desired text, photo or gif. You can use this method for the background of live stories.

Fill with one color

PS If the offered palette is not enough, then you can clamp any color and a more varied one will appear.

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Color palette on Instagram stories

Rectangles from text

This trick can be used to add design elements. Take a photo from the gallery or make a solid background. Click on the add text icon. We put a period (another sign is possible, the main thing is a small one), then 10-15 spaces and one more period. Add a background to the text – icon A.

Rectangles from text to Instagram Stories

It turns out a colored rectangle.

Colored rectangle in Instagram Stories

Now stretch and move the rectangle to the corner.

How to make a colored strip in a story

This can be done several times, making rectangles of different colors, experimenting with shapes. It turns out a frame.

How to frame a story

PS The more gaps, the less you need to stretch the rectangle, and the narrower the strip is.


We already wrote above that gradient is a standard editor function. When we click New, the gradient opens, to change it we need to click on the gradient icon in the lower right corner.

How to make a gradient in Instagram Stories

There are 5 types of gradient in the editor.

Types of gradient on Instagram

If you want to make your own gradient, you can go for a trick. Click on the sticker icon. Scroll down to the emoji and choose the one that suits us in color.

How to make your own gradient in Instagram Stories

Stretch the emoji to get the color.

Creating your own gradient in history

Do the same with the other emoji and then blend them.

Emoji for background

Of course, the transition here is not as smooth as in standard gradients, but you can experiment. It is better to choose monochromatic emoji so that broken pixels are not too conspicuous. Alternatively, you can design activities or games in stories.

PS You can use not only emoji, but also gifs or any PNG image from the Internet.

Another way is to use rectangles of text (previous point). We make a solid background – choose the main color. Then we make a rectangle from the text of a different color. It is better to choose a color from an extended palette.

Monochrome background for stories

Now enlarge the rectangle and tilt it at the desired angle. It remains to add some text. This method is better than a gradient from GIFs, as it has a smoother color transition.

Colored line in Instagram story

Translucent background

A semi-transparent background is useful if you don’t want to use just a picture or a solid background. Add a neutral image from the gallery. Go to the drawing tool (wavy line icon) and find a selection marker there.

How to make a Translucent background in Instagram Stories

We select it, at the bottom of the palette, select the desired color (you can use the eyedropper) and hold down the screen with your finger until a translucent fill appears. The principle is the same as for a transparent background, only there we used a regular marker. Then you can add an inscription and other elements.

Transparent background in stories

PS Unfortunately, you cannot adjust the transparency percentage, and sometimes the translucent fill flies and changes to a solid color.

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It is interesting: How to set up ads in Instagram Stories

Patterns for background from symbols

For this life hack, we need the website. Here you can find interesting symbols and fonts and insert them into the story like text. Yes, new beautiful fonts have recently appeared in the story editor, but many still do not like them. So, we go to the site.

Scroll down and select the desired symbol. Click on the symbol, it is saved to the clipboard.

Patterns for background from symbols

Now we need to add text to the story (add all the characters from this site like this). Click on the Text tool (the icon with the letters Aa), hold down the screen with your finger so that the “Insert” button appears, click on it and paste the copied symbol.

Story background symbols

The pattern can be enlarged, multiplied and transferred to the desired location.

How to make a pattern in Instagram Stories

You can change the color of the pattern, since it is recognized as text in the editor. Click on it and select the desired text from the palette.

How to change the color of a pattern in a story

Depending on the type of text, the symbol may change. True, in this case, the pattern becomes small again, it must be enlarged again and moved to the desired place. And the size is limited – if with the classic style you can increase the pattern to the maximum, then in the rest the increase is insignificant.

Symbols can be used as frames and patterns for photos, and you can also make a pattern out of them.

How to make a pattern in Instagram Stories

Erase part of the background with an eraser

You can make an interesting pattern with an eraser – first select a photo and overlay a solid color background over it (the very first life hack). Then go to and select the desired pattern for the frame, for example, a square (described in the previous paragraph). We put a square in the place where it will be necessary to develop part of the photo, for example, where the face is.

Erase part of the background with an eraser

Now take the eraser tool (to do this, go back to the drawing panel) and click the eraser icon. We erase part of the photo. It turns out such a sticker effect. Can be used to swipe to Stories.

How to make an unusual background in Instagram Stories

Pattern (stripes, circles and other patterns)

Here we go again to First, make a solid color background, then go to coolsymbol and choose a suitable pattern for the pattern. Copy, paste as text, select the desired color.

How to make a beautiful background in Stories

Now we increase and do everything several times until the entire background is filled with squares. Elements cannot be copied into a story, so each square must be inserted as a separate text and then enlarged / moved. You can make the squares smaller so that the lines are not so thick, but then you need more squares. Change the background color and squares until you get what you want.

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Minimalistic background for stories

Usage example: This can be used to create a background for the story in which you want to share the post.

Contour in the photo

You can make a doodle effect using markers. Add a photo from the gallery to the background, then switch to drawing mode and select a marker. You can use regular or neon.

Choose the thickness of the brush (slider on the left). We need subtle touches. And we begin to draw.

How to add an outline to a photo in Instagram Stories

Patterns with a brush

Open the photo in the gallery and draw any pattern. For example, loops. You can select a regular marker, neon marker, or highlighter marker. Neon looks more impressive. The main thing is that the brush is smaller.

How to add patterns to your story

Then we very carefully erase what comes in the photo (it may not work the first time). As a result, you need to achieve this effect:

Unusual effect in stories

You can experiment, everything here is limited by your imagination and ability to draw. Stories drawing tool takes some getting used to.

An example of creating an original background

Semi-transparent gradient

The secret function of stories.

  1. Add a photo from the gallery.
  2. Then we swipe to the right, as if we want to scroll through the photo.
  3. A semi-transparent gradient appears and is superimposed over the photo.

How to make a semi-transparent gradient in a story


In a story, you can apply animated and static effects on top of a photo or video, for example, a glitch effect, mosaic, multiple faces, duotone, bokeh, golden dust. This function is clearly spied on by Tik-Tok.

How to use Story effects to create backgrounds

To add effects, you need to upload a photo for the background from the gallery and click the smiley icon with stars.

Picture for the background in the story

Full screen words

Not to say that this is a very original idea, but there is something in it. At least it’s clear what the main message of the story is and what the emphasis is on. We take a picture for the background from the gallery, fill it completely with color, then erase part of it with an eraser and repeat the main word or a few words many times on the remaining part. You can add a couple of patterns.

Full screen words in stories


The story editor has few features and tools, but if you use our life hacks and connect your imagination, you can slightly expand its capabilities. Perhaps you will come up with new ideas based on ours, and you can get the most out of the editor.

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