LOFW Props

Written by Leah Schapira on Monday, 16 June 2014. Posted in News Updates

Back in the day, when I first began writing food articles, I barely had props. What do you need props for? Photo shoots. Once you finished writing and testing your recipe, it’s time to have it photographed. And to photograph a photo you have to style it for the camera. The styling of a photo can make or break a reader's decision if they will try the recipe or not. 
   A small part of the collection. You never know which glass is needed for the perfect photo. 
Here and there I had couple of bowls and cups from leftover Purim Mishloach Manot, but a prop closet? It wasn’t even the plan…
So how does one shoot 15 dishes a day without much props? Luckily at that point in my life I lived in a townhouse in a row full of more townhouses. And so I went prop shopping. White round plates from one neighbor, forks from another, and I could always rely on fabrics as backdrops from my friend down the block. To fill in the rest of my missing props, I set myself a budget and headed to my nearest Home Goods to find discounted items. 
     Dress up or dress down, you can never go wrong with basic white dishes. 
But as with all things, the appetite grows. Close to a decade has passed, and our photos have become more stylish. Sometimes you find such fabulous end up creating a recipe just so you can use it in a photo. 
Here are a couple of my favorite prop sources:
Home Goods: You never know what they have in stock.
CB2: is crate and barrel’s less expensive, hipper online version.  
Ikea -Ikea may be known for ready to assemble furniture, but they have a fabulous dishes and glasses in all colors. 
Fabric stores: Choose textured fabrics and have it cut to 1 yard. That’s plenty of fabric to use as a background. Just make sure you iron it well. 
Lowes: Wooden boards and paint make a perfect solid backdrop, no ironing required.
Sometimes I find more stuff I like in Pier One or Crate and Barrel. And the prop closet just grows to fit ‘em...

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About the Author

Leah Schapira

Leah Schapira is the bestselling author of Fresh & Easy Kosher Cooking, which sold it’s first 10,000 copies in 10 days, and the co-author of the Made Easy cookbook series, including Passover Made Easy, the debut title of the Made Easy series, Starters and Sides Made Easy, and the recently debuted Kids Cooking Made Easy.
In 2010, Leah launched, the popular online kosher recipe exchange, which currently boasts 30,000 Facebook fans. Her cookbook career began at the age of 21, when she wrote her first cookbook as a fundraiser to begin channeling her obsession with recipes. 
Leah is also a monthly columnist for Whisk, the popular kosher food magazine published by Ami Magazine, where readers appreciate her humor and wit. She’s a natural at live events, whether it’s a cozy cooking class around a kitchen island, or a hall filled with thousands. 
She has been featured in The Washington Post, The Star Ledger, and The Blue Lifestyle, among many others. She lives in New Jersey with her husband and children.

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