WHERE TO FIND SHOOT PROPS
Shopping for the perfect props can be one of the most time consuming aspects of a shoot, but it’s one of my favorite parts. After creating the mood board and shot list, I always go through what we already have at the studio and make a list of what we will need to purchase. I then break down that list and organize it by which store I expect to find the items at so that I don’t miss anything when I’m shopping in person or online. It’s always better to start shopping as soon as you can in case you can’t find what you need and have to order something or change plans. As soon as I have a plan, I start to shop, usually at one of the following stores.
These days the first place I look for props is on Amazon. Especially since we’re so busy right now, it’s a great place to get items quickly and avoid the hassle of hunting through a few stores. I’m always surprised at all the things that I can find on the site. For example, my last order was bubbles, rubber ducks, and a fake cat skull - there really are very few things that you can’t find haha. If you’re going to purchase often, definitely invest in Prime, it’s really worth it.
Oh Target - such a dangerous place. They have really been killing the game with their home and clothing sections lately. Their prices are really great, and they have so much variety. It’s another place where you can find so many different items under one roof which saves a lot of time. Recently they have had really great prices on fake plants and leaves which we have used in flat lays, and have spray painted for a few different shoots. Target is also really great when you need holiday-specific items because their holiday section is usually pretty big and they put items out far in advance.
If I’m being honest, I kind of have a love/hate relationship with Michael’s. It’s really nice to have all craft items in one easy location, but in my personal experience, their customer service isn’t awesome and it’s basically impossible to find an employee to help you. However, I find myself there before almost every shoot. Items I tend to purchase often are the small cheap bottles of acrylic paint, sheets of scrapbook paper for cutouts, and spray paint. I have also found really great backdrop items like white painted wood which ended up being cheap after using coupons.
Thrift stores are the best for finding unique pieces that you can’t get anywhere else. They can be hit or miss if you are looking for something specific, but if you go frequently just to browse, you can stumble across really fun and useful items. For example, we have some blue striped fabric we found at Savers that we use all the time. If you go to all the stores around you, you will quickly learn which ones are the best. Some good ones to start with are Savers, Goodwill, Salvation Army, and the Habitat for Humanity Restore.
If you know me, you know I love Anthropologie. It’s been one of my favorite stores forever, I have really sweet memories of driving 30 minutes to Berkeley with my mom to get bagels and shop the sale section when I was pretty young. Anthro is my favorite for gorgeous and unique dishes and flat lay pieces. I think a lot of people have the perception that anything you buy there will be really expensive, but I am usually surprised at how affordable it can be, especially when you only need to buy a few pieces. I always browse their website when they have additional discounts on their sale section and I have found really affordable pieces this way.
Thanks for reading and let us know where you like to find props and backdrops for shoots.
Is it the weekend yet?