Create a Home Office Accent Wall to Uplevel Your Zoom Calls (Budget-Friendly)

My home office has gone through a lot of changes since I designed it back in 2019. I used to work alone, I only had one desk, and video calls were infrequent (basically nonexistent).

I think you know where this is going…

Now, I share the office with my two kids. We added another desk (their 15-minute DIY homeschool desk) plus a craft table.

We adjusted the layout to fit us all in, but the video calls? They looked like a hot mess. The people on the other end of the camera were usually treated to a background littered with school books, papers, and math problems messily scrawled on the giant whiteboard wall behind us.

Something had to change, and it definitely needed to make jumping on Zoom and looking professional a plug-and-play situation.

In this post, I’m going to show you how I created a home office accent wall that works as the perfect Zoom background, with no mess in sight.

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Why even make a home office accent wall?

The short answer? To jump on that Zoom call you inevitably forget about until the last minute and look like you have your act together and are ready to go!

I’ve created a set-up that makes it impossible for a mess to be seen in the background. Or even to accumulate, for that matter! Making an accent wall specifically for the purpose of your conference calls seems unnecessary until you think about how often you’re on them and how it can impact your professional image.

Here was the view behind me before:

This was the view behind me during Zoom calls before I created my home office accent wall and reoriented the desk.

Which wall should be the accent wall in a home office?

This was the first question I asked myself. As we’ve established, the direction my laptop camera faced had a pretty wall but also a view of the rest of the room (which is messy 90% of the time because #kids).

If you’re styling your home office for Zoom calls you want your camera to face an interesting, yet simple, background that’s easy to keep clean. For that reason, plan to create your accent wall behind your desk, and have your desk pulled about three feet out from the wall. Your chair should be on the accent wall side of the desk, facing away from the wall. Because of the shallow depth of the area behind you, the only thing that will ever be in view is the accent wall and any decorative elements you decide to add to it. Make sense?

Take a look at this photo for some context:

When deciding where to put an accent wall in a home office, be sure it falls behind your chair, with your laptop camera facing the wall for the best Zoom and video call set-up.

What colors should you use for an office accent wall?

When it comes to choosing the colors for a feature wall in your office, consider these two things:

  1. What colors flatter you most?
    The colors in your closet are a good indicator if you aren’t sure. It’s important to choose something that will make you look your best (if you think about it, the wall is kind of like an accessory in this case). When in doubt, most people look good in blue.
  2. What colors will be the least distracting?
    Choose a palette with low contrast, similar tones. This isn’t a great moment to try bold contrasting colors — they’re too distracting on camera. Here, I opted for tonal shades of blue, middle gray, and dark grey. Other nice choices would be shades of cream and tan, terracotta with soft yellow, or soothing greens and golds.
Stencil progress with calming blues and moody greys

What I used to create my office accent wall

Since I needed to create this accent wall on a budget, I knew that a wall stencil was the perfect solution.

My two favorite stencil companies are Cutting Edge Stencils and Royal Stencils. I quickly searched both sites and fell in love with this Magnolia and Berries stencil.

I knew that it would be perfect for using more than one color with the two types of leaves and the separate berries.

Learn to create this easy office upgrade

I put together a video tutorial sharing some tips and tricks for creating an office accent wall of your own with a wall stencil. You can watch the video below or, if you prefer reading the steps, here’s a full written tutorial on how to stencil an accent wall that looks just like wallpaper.

There you have it! Creating a home office accent wall is the perfect way to uplevel your Zoom game. I hope you enjoyed this decorating tip and learned something useful in the process.

Want more home office inspiration? Here’s the full collection of Bloom in the Black home office DIYs and shopping guides. If you’re interested in seeing a future article on a particular topic, shoot me an email and I’ll add it to the list!