I have a love affair with props.
I love how they can add atmosphere to a photograph and tell a story. I am so happy when I am styling up a little photo for inspiration, lost in my own little world!
I have wanted to bring back my Sunday Prop Shop feature for a while, but my obsession with props is too great to restrict to a Sunday! So from now on I will be sharing my collections with you under #PropShop. Over the last few months it's been brilliant to see so many bloggers take a little more effort over their photos and style them in their own ways, with new backgrounds and colourful accessories. What are your go to props for photographs? I'd love to know!
When it comes to props I adore plates. Nothing makes me happier than a table of mis matched crockery and serving dishes, making a routine, mid week meal come alive. There is something about the pops of colour that just make the food taste nicer! All in the mind!
My collection of wonderful plates means I can create unique photography for food clients and I have curated a collection of different styles and eras to ensure I can style a vast range of imagery. I have banned myself from buying anymore blue and white china at the moment as I have enough to host a banquet with! But the temptation is hard to resist when I spy a plate for 50p at a charity shop!
My "props" have become part of our daily life and we use almost everything you see in this post on rotation. I never wanted to have a cupboard that looked like a sad returns department of a homeware store, I want to be surrounded by things that make me smile and inspire a creative idea.
I have lusted after a wooden plate rack for as long as I can remember so I was thrilled when I was sent this beautiful turquoise number from Out There Interiors. I can't wait to find a house to buy so it can adorn our new kitchen wall! Or I might be tempted to have it in my office - wouldn't it be wonderful for scrap book papers, well loved and saved magazines and my absolute favourite plates that inspire so many ideas?
The colour is so rich and at 100cm wide it can display a huge number of plates. Layer your smaller plates in front of dinner plates and really show off your lovely china.
I think the vibrant colour would refresh any kitchen and the distressed finish adds character and charm.
I am all for pops of colour so this would look brilliant with an all white display too.
It gave me the chance to show you some of my plates that I have collected over the years.
I always search for metal chargers in charity shops and car boot sales. They make fab props because they have depth and texture but are not shiny! Remember - you don't want to see your reflection in a photograph!
Woods are excellent too - chopping boards make perfect backgrounds for small objects and I cannot resist picking up a wooden plate when I see one. The surfaces are often smooth but not too reflective and you can use them on crisp sheets of white paper or card for a clean look or take them outside on the garden bench for a more earthy and Autumnal feel. They are great for kids craft posts too as they can be used for your craft materials without the worry of smashing like china.
Plastic can be fantastic too! Dig out your picnic plates and raid the kids melamine - they often have great prints which can add fun to a photo but be careful when shooting outside. On a sunny day plastic will show up big light patches so take your plate into the shade, in even light where the colours won't distort.
Paper plates are ideal props too and I was giddy when I opened these alphabet plates for Mother's Day. I use them all the time in my Instagram feed and paper plates are cheaper to buy than china. So save one from a next birthday party - I am sure it will inspire an idea.
I source a lot of my individual plates from charity shops. I head straight to the crockery section and more often than not I spot a bargain. I am currently hunting for the green cabbage leaf plates although they don't seen to come up that often.
Platters are wonderful for big family meals. It might just be me, but bringing to the table a feast on a pretty platter just makes more of an occasion of meal times.
But these have to be my favourite. Quite a few of them were birthday and Christmas presents and although they could be saved for best, we don't, we use them everyday and get such lovely compliments from visitors.
And if you fancy having a play with some of my props then make sure you get a ticket for Blog On on the 4th May 2014. Along with 3 other bloggers I will be hosting the props and styling part of the photography session and will be encouraging you all to create beautiful vignettes for your social media feeds as well as sharing lots of tips and advice for styling your blog photos at home. I'll be showing you my behind the scenes shots and let you into lots of my little secrets to get "studio" look photos at home.
I will be bringing suitcases and apple crates full of all sorts of styles so there will be something for everyone to get creative with.
Plus we get to play!
Do you suffer from plate love syndrome too? I'd love to see how you style your photos with lovely plates!
I was kindly sent the plate rack from Out There Interiors and I love it.