Fabric Backdrop

Fabric Backdrop - {The Ribbon Retreat Blog}

Remember this cutie patootie from my Bow Tie Tutorial?

I promised I would show you how I got this cute picture.
I am not a professional photographer by any means,
but I do enjoy taking pictures of my children from time to time.
And I love changing it up and fabric is the perfect way to do that.

- Supplies –

One yard of beautiful Designer Fabric
(I used Red Ribbon Wonderland from Flurry by Kate Spain for Moda.)
Packaging tape
One yard Minky fabric (Optional)

This is the easiest tutorial ever. :)

Using your packaging tape, tape your fabric up to a wall.

Choose a wall that is near a window or a glass sliding door.
Natural light is key in getting great pictures.

I placed some white Minky fabric down because I don’t like the look of my carpet in the picture.
If you have wood floors, you could definitely just use those! :)

You could also get more fabric and have it come out onto the carpet and the child can sit on it.

Put your child down and you’re good to go!
I suggest doing this right after a feeding and a nap. It usually goes better. :)

I take pictures with my regular point and shoot camera.

The key is to NOT use your flash.
Just rely on the natural lighting.
This may be in the morning or afternoon, depending on where your window is.

If you need more light, you can wrap cardboard with aluminum foil
and use that to bounce light on the subject.

Here is a picture of the back of a general camera.

Most cameras have these buttons on them.

Do you see the +/- box in the main circle?
That is for exposure. I use this ALL the time. It makes all my pictures brighter or darker.

I always set it to a portrait setting when photographing the kids.
If I am photographing a finished product, I use a macro setting.
It’s that tulip on the left side of the circle.

Those are my two main things I do when taking pictures.
If you are great with pictures and have anything else to add, feel free. :)

Then I edit my pictures on Picnik.com.
(Picnik.com is no longer available, but another great website is Picmonkey.com)
It’s a free photo editing website.
I pay for the premium package, but most of what I use is free.

In Picnik I change the size of my pictures, brighten/contrast, fix color, sharpen, and add fun features.

If the photo is a little yellow, I use the colors tab under Basic Edits.
I click on the neutral picker, bring the dropper over to the picture and click on the most yellow spot.
I usually click on a few different spots to see what looks best to me.
This evens out the tone of the picture.

If I like the color of the picture, just not how dark it is, I go to the Exposure tab.
This would be next after you change the color of the picture as well.

I always increase the brightness and contrast up to my liking.
It’s something fun to play around with and see what you like.

You can also crop and resize the photos on this page.

Then if you want to go even farther, the effects tab can be a lot of fun!

I did everything above (except the color) and then “winterized”
my photos to get these cute pictures of my kids.

Fabric Backdrop - {The Ribbon Retreat Blog}

Fabric Backdrop - {The Ribbon Retreat Blog}

Fabric Backdrop - {The Ribbon Retreat Blog}

We had a lot of fun and you can too!
Just grab some cute designer fabric from
The Ribbon Retreat to use as a backdrop for beautiful memories. :)

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10 Comments

  1. Posted January 11, 2012 at 2:32 pm | Permalink

    Great tips and cute boys! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Tan
    Posted January 11, 2012 at 9:41 pm | Permalink

    Neato will have to def remember this idea…they are getting so big.

  3. Posted January 24, 2012 at 10:06 am | Permalink

    you did a Fabulous job on your tutorial… And your little men are Adorable!!! :)

    • Shirley
      Posted January 24, 2012 at 2:06 pm | Permalink

      Thank you! :)

  4. Katrina
    Posted February 5, 2012 at 5:58 pm | Permalink

    Hey, I LOVE this tutorial! But given that picnik is shutting down in april, could you make another tutorial like this one except a different photo editing website?

    • Shirley
      Posted February 5, 2012 at 10:45 pm | Permalink

      Yes, isn’t that sad! I couldn’t believe it when I saw the announcement since I had just made this tutorial! I haven’t found a editing website that I like yet. When I do, I will update it. Thanks!

  5. Katrina
    Posted February 6, 2012 at 4:30 am | Permalink

    Could you try photobucket?

    • Shirley
      Posted February 6, 2012 at 9:11 am | Permalink

      I originally used Photobucket and liked Picnik better. I am sure it has changed since then, and I will check it out again. Definitely play around with it and see if you can get the same techniques. :)

  6. samantha
    Posted September 24, 2014 at 3:07 am | Permalink

    Loved ur tutorial! Veryy helpful, whats the photo editing website u use now?

    • The Ribbon Retreat
      Posted September 27, 2014 at 6:15 am | Permalink

      Hi Samantha! Thank you so much! The editing website Shirley uses now is PicMonkey.com which is very similar to the one mentioned in this post. It is really user friendly and fun! Good luck with your pictures and thank you again! Have a wonderful day! Michelle :)

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