The Flat Lay Props You Need Right Now!
Building a strong flat lay kit gives you the flexibility to create a strong flat lay anywhere, even under a time crunch. Here are the 6 items we keep going back to over and over again that give us fool proof, beautiful flat lays every time.
A beautiful tray allows you to pull whatever elements you're photographing together in a second, and always gives you a cohesive image. The tray doesn't have to be antique, or silver, it just needs to be in a style and size that matches the aesthetic you usually go for in your flat lays. For instance, if you like modern, clean lines, get a tray that has no embellishments in wood or white. If you love patina, go for a vintage silver tray and choose one you really love to have as your go-to.
A cheesecloth is an incredibly compact and inexpensive piece you should always have in your styling kit. We love these ones because they're moldable and create great backgrounds for whatever we want to style from wedding stationery to product photos.
Scissors are a must have prop because they are relevant to most flat lays and add a nice layer of interest. We have lots of vintage and unique scissors here that we love to use in our flat lays.
4. A SIGNATURE ITEM
Choosing one unique item that you love to use over and over again can give you a signature look to your flat lays. Some items we love to use are vintage inkwells, opera glasses, pocket watches, paper or feather butterflies and handmade pottery pieces. Pick one thing that goes well with most things you style and use it as your go-to. You could even include something with your logo or an element of your logo on it to really make your flat lays stand out and match your brand. For instance, if you have a flower in your logo, find that type of flower at a craft store and find a way to include it as a signature piece in every flat lay you do.
5. SMALL DISH
Whether you use a vintage ring dish or a hand made pinch bowl, having a small dish or two is a go-to item for any flat lay from food styling to wedding invites. Small dishes can be used in a variety of ways and are very good tools for layering textures.
6. STYLING MAT
Last but not least, THE most important tool to have in your kit, a Styling Mat! Since Styling Mats fold up to just 15" or 20", they're easily included in a mobile styling kit that fits into a tote bag or camera bag.
You might notice that ribbons are not on this list. They're probably one of the most commonly used items in flat lays besides trays, and that's exactly why they aren't on the list! To build a truly unique styling kit that will speak to your unique brand, you must be able to make images that are different from what everyone else is doing. This isn't to say you shouldn't use ribbons in your flat lays, but use them with intention and try to think of ways to incorporate them that are not commonly seen.