Photography for Sewing: How to Make Your Projects Shine

smiling girl crouching and wearing a green cardigan over striped shirt

Photos are one of the best ways for you to share your sewing work with the world.

Whether you're snapping photos to share on your personal Instagram, taking product shots for your shop, or capturing sew-a-long stills for your local sewing group - there are many different reasons to want to up your photography game.

Now with nearly everyone having access to a camera in their pocket it is easier than ever to get started.

Read on for 5 simple tips to instantly improve your photos. (Most images in this guide were taken with a simple iPhone camera!)

Tip 1 - Reduce clutter

Reduce Clutter

Toys, clothes, and empty boxes distract from the subject of your photo. If you need to clear the frame, toss stuff behind you while you snap the pic (we do it all the time!).

Tip 2 - Use Natural Light

Whenever possible utilize natural light (sunlight) as opposed to indoor lights. It's more flattering on skin tones and typically provides more even lighting. Note - try not to take pictures in direct sunlight (stand in the shade) if the sun is directly overhead, because it'll cast hard shadows.

Tip 3 - Get on their level

The most flattering images are taken from slightly above your subject's eyes. Kneel down, lay down, or get up on a stool - whatever it takes to get some shots from this angle. As you're focusing on their eyes make sure you also don't cut their toes out of the picture!

Tip 4 - Take a step back

Camera lenses are rounded. This creates a slight distortion around the edges of every image. If you're standing too close to the person you're photographing then their face or body can look stretched out. Standing further away also gives you the opportunity to crop the image later!

Tip 5 - Simplify your backdrop

When photographing clothing items you've sewn you want the pictures to focus on the right things. Perhaps the easiest tip on this article, finding a blank wall will make the biggest difference in your images. The busier the backdrop, the more likely your subject is going to be de-emphasized. Visually minimalist images stand out better on smaller screens.

Taking better photos is all about trial and error. The more you practice the better you'll get. While these tips will help bring your photos to the next level, they should be seen more as loose guidelines instead of hard and fast rules. We've taken plenty of pictures that intentionally break one or more of these rules in order to get a specific shot. As you experiment with your photographic style you'll find what works best for you and your makes.

Speaking of, we'd love to see the items you sew! Please tag us in and Lowland makes with #lowlandkids. Happy sewing!