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How To Make A Mini Photo Studio At Home

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Photo studio at home hero shot

Have you ever wondered how to get studio-like photos for your blog or to sell goods on Ebay, but you always seem to have clutter in the background?  You don’t need a lot of space to create that ‘spacious’ look to a shot, just a home-made photo studio!

Here’s a ‘behind the screen’ look at how to make your own at home photography studio, and it’s cheaper and easier than you think!
Time to make: Approx 45 minutes


Take one cardboard box:

take one cardboard box

Draw a square on the side – leave a gap all the way around the square so you will have a ‘frame’ to this window you are about to cut out:
draw a square on side

Draw a square on three sides of the box and then cut out the squares:
cut out squares

Get some white or off-white coloured tissue paper and a plain white sheet of thick paper for the backdrop:
get tissue paper

Stick the white paper backdrop in place. It goes just under the edge of the cut out square on the top of the box and it unfolds inside the box.  Your box should be positioned so that there is a hole on the top and both sides. This is where you will let your light in.  It’s ok to use parcel tape to stick the backdrop at the top – it won’t be seen on your photos!
stick backdrop in place

As you can see on the photo above, I am holding the white paper backdrop down and using a weight to hold it in place.  I don’t want my backdrop to crease so I will not stick the bottom part down.  When I am using the studio, I will hold the bottom of the backdrop in place with some Blu-tac or  a paper weight that will remain out of shot.  When the studio is not in use, the paper will curl back into the box to keep it clean and unscuffed.

Next, stick tissue paper onto all three sides where there is a square cut out.  I used brown parcel tape to secure it.

stick tissue paper on

Here is the Finished studio with my lighting in place around it:
finished studio with lighting

This is the shot that I got using this photo studio:
All open when labels on boxes

Here are some blog posts I’ve written that contain images taken in this photo studio so you can see how I have used it:
‘Open When’ Printables
Home made body scrub

If you are selling small goods online, this makes a great way to display those items well to increase your chances of making a sale – clear photos always help!

Have you got any photo styling tips or would you make something like this for yourself? Let me know in the comments!

Article Categories:
How To · Lifestyle · Tip Of The Week · Tips & Hacks

Comments to How To Make A Mini Photo Studio At Home

  • How useful and clever. Thanks for this!

    Gemma 3rd March 2016 12:49 pm Reply
  • That’s so effective! Just shows what you can achieve with not a lot of money!

    Liz Burton 3rd March 2016 8:14 pm Reply
    • It was so easy to do and I had the big box lying around taking up space so now it is useful!

      Nadine Hill 4th March 2016 3:24 pm Reply
  • What an excellent tutorial! Thank you so much for taking the time to write it. I have been meaning to try my hand at making one of this for ages, but I didn’t even know hoe to start. Now I can 🙂

    Orli 3rd March 2016 9:50 pm Reply
    • Ah! Glad to help!

      Nadine Hill 4th March 2016 3:24 pm Reply
  • I used to have a homemade light box. I think that they are a great make and this is a fab tutorial. Thanks

    Jen Walshaw (@Mum_TheMadHouse) 4th March 2016 11:20 am Reply
    • You’re welcome. I’ve learned to keep mine high up now because soon after I shot this post my cat sat on the tissue at the top and fell through!! I had to do a repair job!

      Nadine Hill 4th March 2016 3:25 pm Reply
  • Great tutorial, Light boxes are perfect for taking photos in winter when daylight is scarce.

    Nayna Kanabar 4th March 2016 9:24 pm Reply
    • Absolutely! I find this makes it much easier for me to get great shots!

      Nadine Hill 7th March 2016 1:46 pm Reply
  • Hi, just popping over from the SoFab hub to say hello! I love this post, this is so clever! Blog photography is alway difficult to get right so I think I will be giving this a go.

    Jo 4th March 2016 10:02 pm Reply
    • Thanks Jo! I’m glad you like my bit of DIY!!

      Nadine Hill 7th March 2016 1:46 pm Reply
  • Oh yeah love this and just what I need. Thanks for sharing hon xx

    Susan Mann 4th March 2016 11:44 pm Reply
    • You’re welcome x

      Nadine Hill 7th March 2016 1:47 pm Reply
  • Great idea, we tried this a while ago for our pottery and it worked until we could afford a proper light box.

    Kizzy 5th March 2016 5:24 am Reply
    • Ah thanks! It was an easy and cheap fix until I reach a stage where I need more!

      Nadine Hill 7th March 2016 1:48 pm Reply
  • Such a good idea. I have two light tents and I can never get them to “un-pop” and get back into their storage cases so they really annoy me! 😀

    Emma 5th March 2016 8:15 am Reply
    • I have a baby sun tent that is like that! Are the light tents good for your blog photography?

      Nadine Hill 7th March 2016 1:48 pm Reply
  • This is a fab tutorial and something that will help lots of people. I have two giant sheets of white foam board that I use at the moment but I do have a lightbox somewhere that I really need to get out and use x

    Cass@frugalfamily 5th March 2016 12:45 pm Reply
    • Ooh if you have a proper lightbox- yes use it! Hopefully this cheap and easy DIY lightbox will be useful to anyone who doesn’t have any tools to get great photos!

      Nadine Hill 7th March 2016 1:49 pm Reply
  • I need to make something like this as the lighting is terrible in my house and the weather has been so dreary

    Kara 5th March 2016 4:14 pm Reply
    • It’s tough in winter to get the light we need for shots isn’t it?

      Nadine Hill 7th March 2016 1:49 pm Reply
  • Wow that is so clever and makes it much easier to take better photographs, mine are always very hit and miss! x

    Karen Langridge 7th March 2016 10:02 am Reply
    • I find it easy to use as long as the items I’m shooting are small enough to go in this!

      Nadine Hill 7th March 2016 1:50 pm Reply
  • Genius! I like the way the opening at the top and the white paper helps flood the shot with light. 14th March 2016 11:42 am Reply
    • Thank you! But this may make you laugh – after the photo was taken my cat went to make himself cosy on the box and fell through it!

      Nadine Hill 14th March 2016 4:26 pm Reply
  • Great light box, and I love the fact the cardboard box came from Fortnum and Mason! You’re my kind of lady!

    Mel 5th May 2016 9:59 pm Reply
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