How to photograph a T-shirt flat lay

In this tutorial, we’ll show you how to style and photograph a T-shirt on a tabletop in two different styles

Shooting a T-shirt flat lay is relatively quick and simple. In this product photography tutorial, we will show you two different methods - stuffed and un-stuffed - for styling and photographing a T-shirt for eCommerce, or your lookbooks and catalogues.

We’ve compiled a few useful techniques to give the tee a pro-quality look. For example, you may choose to style your by adding a bit of stuffing for depth and body. Or, to add a more informal look you can play with creases and texture. 

To learn how to photograph and style a T-shirt, read on. But first, let’s run through the essential tools you’ll need:

Here’s the equipment you'll 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 T-shirt
Tissue paper - Stuffing a t-shirt with tissue adds depth

 

Styling the tee without stuffing

 

1. Lay the T-shirt on the tabletop

Spread the T-shirt out evenly in the center of your surface.

The neckline and shoulders of the shirt should be level.

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2. Tuck in the sides

Next, to give the shirt the most natural shape, make a small fold along each side seam and tuck it under.

Tip: For a women’s T-shirt, you may want to taper the shape in a little more.

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3. Style the sleeves

Ever so slightly, slide the armpits of the sleeves in under the body of the T-shirt.

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4. Conceal the rear hem

For a neater finish, tuck the rear hem of the T-shirt underneath so that only the front hem is showing.

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And shoot...

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Styling the tee with stuffing

 

1. Add tissue paper to the shirt

If you would like to add a bit more volume to the shirt, place a
few sheets of tissue paper in the body.

This will raise it slightly and give it some depth.

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2. Style the t-shirt

Once you have added the tissue paper, go ahead and style the shirt as above.

Make sure everything is even and symmetrical, tuck in the side seams, adjust sleeves and conceal the rear hem.

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3. Adjust texture with your fingers

By gently pressing down on the tissue paper with your fingers, you can vary the texture and add an impression of movement to the fabric.

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4. Position your light source

Move the light around to see what position best highlights the texture, adding or taking away drama. 

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And shoot...

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What we'd really appreciate is...

Thanks for reading our tutorial on using an styling a t-shirt flat lay for fashion eCommerce — 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