Taking Better Blog Photos: Props

Better Props

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We now live in a world full of styled photos, flat lays, and Pinterest.  No blog post is complete without a good image, that often includes a perfect white desk, gold mouse and a pretty planner. It is the time to focus on taking better blog photos in order to be recognized. Now, I am not saying that as bloggers/instagrammers/creatives/business owners, that we need to have picture perfect images every time. Lets face it, most of us started this blogging or creative journey because we have a passion for something and want to share that, most of us got an Instagram to share our lives with friends and family, and the rest of us just like to look at everyone else’s lives. Last week I talked about the perfect backgrounds for you photos, like the marble contact paper I have in the photos below. 

While this post focuses on those crisp images with beautiful props, I am in no way telling you to stop posting photos of you and your best friend, your husband sitting with your kitten/dog, or anything else that you want to share about your life. Because this space is wide open for that! I love when people I follow share stories and photos of what life is really like, but I also enjoy the prettiness of a styled photo. I’m here to help you with those images, not the real life ones, because those I want to still remain authentic.

I happen to have a lot of these things in my office already, and I actually use them a lot, so I didn’t necessarily buy them for the purpose of styled photos. But even though I could just buy normal things like yellow pencils, who is excited to write with one of those?! Photo Props

  • Paper clips– I have these Kate Spade bow clips and I love them. Since it doesn’t come with a lot, I use them sparingly and for very special purposes.
  • Keyboard– I bought this to use with my iPad on flights, and I LOVE it for that purpose, but it is also a great prop!
  • Pretty pens– pens, stationary, etc are all my jam. I can’t leave Target without buying something fro these sections. Pens are also a great way to bring some color into your photo.
  • Adorable mugs– I keep telling Dave that I didn’t chose the mug life, the mug life chose me. I have an over abundance of mugs and I just can’t help myself. If I see a cute mug, I need to buy it. Again, Target kills me with this. Did you see their new plaid ones? Or how about the mermaid scale one from Starbucks? SWOON.
  • Phone Case- Most of the time I use my real camera to take blog photos, so I am able to have my phone as a prop. That means I have to get the perfect case to be used in any setting. It’s also a good prop for outfit shots because you can hold it, look like you are talking on the phone, or even texting.

Blog Props

  • Creative pencils- like I said, who wants to see a boring yellow pencil? I love pencils with sayings on them, and recently bought some mint, coral and white ones from the dollar section at Target.
  • Fabric or ribbon-If you are photographing on a wooden surfaces, a white board, or something with a solid color, fabric and ribbon can bring your photo to another level. Especially product shots for stationary or things of the like.
  • Scissors- I don’t know what it is about these gold scissors, but I love seeing them in photos. They just look so fancy to me!
  • Washi tape– I have this thing with sticky things, I hate them. I can’t stand band-aids, or tape, so I don’t actually use washi tape very often, but you better believe that doesn’t stop me from buying adorable rolls every chance I get! #DoItForTheBlog
  • Small trinkets- I have a few mini eiffel towers, little figurines, and a small jewelry box that I like to use for more dainty photos. Many things can work for this, just make sure you are going with the same theme.

Do you have any other props you like to have around for your photos?

  • http://www.always-al.com/ Alexandra Stacey

    Great tips! I feel like I am always walking around our apartment looking for stuff that would look good together. Like a treasure hunt!

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      Thank you! I was doing the same thing. Now I actually have a bin full of things solely to use as blog props. Dave thinks I am insane

  • http://polkadottedbluejay.com/ Elise Laney

    I am in LOVE with the paper clips!!!

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      Aren’t they adorable! I got them on sale a few months ago and was so excited.

  • http://www.thedemczakdays.com Annie Demczak

    Washi tape forever!

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      I am obsessed. I have so many colors and patterns, if only I could get over my thing with the stickiness and use them haha

  • http://www.thelowcountrymama.com Jacquelyn @ Lowcountry Mama

    Mint is seriously my new favorite color.. everything I’ve bought this entire summer has been mint or coral. I don’t know what it is, but I LOVE it! And therefore, I love these photos =) Keep the tips coming!

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      Oh girl, mine too! I LOVED being able to buy so many mint things for our wedding, it makes me so sad that I can’t anymore. I am so glad you are enjoying these posts!

  • Megan

    OMG loooove washi tape. I use it to decorate my apple chargers so I can tell them apart from my friends and I use them as tape for wrapping packages or sealing envelopes- so many uses! Thanks for sharing the link for the ipad keyboard! I’ve been thinking about getting one for my new ipad but wasn’t sure whether to get a case with it built in or a wireless one. I like the idea of using it only when I need it- thanks for sharing it!

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      Yay! I am so glad it was helpful! I loveeeee my keyboard. I originally got one that was built into the cover, but it was too bulky and left weird marks on my screen, so this solo bluetooth one works well.

  • http://sparklingcrane.wordpress.com/ sparklingcrane

    Thanks for sharing this post with us! When taking recipe/diy pictures props are the thing I still seem to struggle with, this post has been really helpful for that! Because sometimes it’s really just those little things, that seem quiet simple, that make a picture great.

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      Of course! I am so happy you found the information useful. I totally agree, the little objects can change a picture around so much!

  • Lauren

    Mug life for-evs!!!!

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      Yessss! Although I probably should try and get rid of a few of mine :/

  • Lori Lyons Luhrman

    Blog photos…the struggle is real! Thanks for sharing some of your prop ideas. I definitely have some good props but I find it hard to get that bright light to create the crisp photos. My house is cozy, but apparently a little dark!

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      I wrote a post this week about lighting! It is such a struggle in my house because I have basically not windows, but I am slowly figuring it out.

  • http://a-tiny-traveler.blogspot.com Natalie

    So pretty! These are such good tips and ideas. Blog photos shouldn’t be so hard to take but sometimes they are!! (for me, anyway)

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      Thank you! I agree, it takes a lot of thinking ahead sometimes.

  • marlayoung

    Thank you for sharing some ideas for blog pops. Do you have any favorite online stores for buying props? I think mugs are great for blog props.

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      I love A Beautiful Mess for cute stationary props, besides that I have found that smaller boutiques have cute smaller items.

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      I love A Beautiful Mess for cute stationary props, besides that I have found that smaller boutiques have cute smaller items.

  • http://enjoythisbeautifulseason.blogspot.com/ Danielle

    These tips are seriously so helpful! So many creative tips that I never even thought of.

    • http://totravelandbeyond.com/ Macy Volpe

      I am so glad you think so! Blog photos are an art form 😉

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