First of all, for those who aren’t sure, a “flat lay” is a display of items on a flat surface and photographed from above. A favorite technique of fashion bloggers, the flat lay has exploded on Instagram as a way of exhibiting your latest clothing items and accessories. It’s a great way to share your #ootd (outfit of the day) or just expend some creative energy.
1. What should you be snapping?
It’s best to start with one or two statement pieces, and fill in the gaps with smaller accessories or decorative pieces. It looks amazing when things fit together like a puzzle. Experiment with folding, overlapping (not too much – you don’t want it to look cluttered), and arranging and rearranging to get the perfect look!
Your flat lay should also follow a theme. You might want to flat lay your whole outfit or contents of your purse, but perhaps you want to pick a theme likes “essential beach items”, or color scheme for the best effect.
2. Basic background
You will often see flat lays on white surfaces (a lot of bed sheets) or wooden floors. Whatever you choose, keep it simple – you don’t want your background to distract from your pieces.
3. Angles + lighting
The point of the flat lay is to get an aerial shot from directly above the display. Therefore, depending on the height of your flat lay surface, you will need a chair or stool to boost you up.
It is also vital to position your flat lay in a place with a lot of light. It’s best to get an evenly lit shot, with few shadows that keep highlight some pieces, while keeping others in the dark. Choosing the right surface is actually trickier than it sounds.
Images via blog.wantering.com and Instagram (top-bottom) @westfieldinsider, @collagevintage, @emmalucey