How to style and photograph towels and blankets flat lay

In this tutorial, we teach you how to fold, stack and photograph homeware products


Equipment used: StyleShoots Horizontal and StyleShoots Vertical. Click here to learn more

Photographing homeware like linen, towels, sheets and blankets for e-commerce can be quite simple with the help of some neat folding and stacking. So in this product photography tutorial, we will show you some basic styling techniques when shooting towels and blankets on a tabletop for your web store. 

There's a lot of variety in homeware products these days, so this tutorial isn't a fully comprehensive overview of the different styles and what works best for each. Instead we will be showing you some product styling concepts that you can apply throughout your whole homeware range. 

First, let's run through what you'll be needing in this tutorial. 

The equipment you need

  • Camera - Any camera will suffice but a Canon EOS 5D Mk III is recommended as a standard for professional product photography
  • Studio lighting - Continuous cool LED lamps are recommended to ensure exposure, shadows and contrast are kept consistent
  • Your products - Towels can come in different sizes. So if that's what you're shooting, choose at least three of the same style 
  • Tissue paper - Tissue paper is very useful to add body and depth to a flat looking product
  • Cardboard - Cardboard gives rigidity and structure when photographing flat lay
 

Folding and styling a single towel

1. Lay the towel out flat and fold it in half

To begin, lay the towel flat and create a square by folding it in half. Brush your hands over it to flatten any creases. 

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2. Fold it over lengthways

Take the corners and fold them up to create a rectangle.

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3. Then fold it sideways

Take the other corners and fold in the other direction. 

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4. Style the edges

Brush your hands over the towel to flatten it down. Be wary of flattening it too much, however. Then pinch the corners and edges of the towel to align them neatly. 

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And shoot...

 
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Stacking and styling three towels

1. Take your biggest towel and fold it into a rectangle

You want to create a three layer fold. To do this, start by folding the towel length ways. Then fold a third of the way up. Fold again into thirds to achieve the look on the right.  

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2. Fold and place the mid-sized towel 

Like above, fold the mid sized towel lengthways and fold it into three layers. Place it in the top right corner. 

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3. Add the smallest towel on top

Again, repeat the same step with the smallest sized towel. Remember to keep things neat and straight. 

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4. Style the details

To add the final touches, add some tissue paper between the folds. This gives extra body and depth to the towels. 

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And shoot - from the side or top down

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You can achieve this alternate style by folding the towels into squares instead of rectangles 

You can achieve this alternate style by folding the towels into squares instead of rectangles 

 

Styling and folding a blanket

1. Lay it out flat

Take the corners and lay the blanket out flat, removing any creases in the process. 

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2. Fold several times to create a rectangle

Fold over lengthways to create a neat rectangular shape for the blanket. 

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3. Cut card to size and insert

Take a piece of sturdy card cut to size and place it on the side that you will be folding over. 

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4. Fold over again

Fold the blanket over the card while remembering to keep your folds neat and straight. Brush your hands over each time to keep a nice, smooth structure. 

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5. Style the fringes

On this blanket, we have a tasseled fringe. To style it, gently run your fingers through it to untangle the knots and create a straight flow.

Depending on your intended look, you can choose to keep it messy or neat.  

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And shoot...

You can fold over a small corner to reveal the inner fabric Take a close up shot to prove the finer details to your potential customers. 

You can fold over a small corner to reveal the inner fabric Take a close up shot to prove the finer details to your potential customers. 

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What we'd really appreciate is...

Thanks for reading our tutorial on styling and photographing homeware — part of our ongoing series of tutorials on product photography, styling and lighting. If you found it useful, why don’t you head on over to our YouTube channel and subscribe?

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flatStephen Warr