How to Set Up Your Own DIY Photo Booth

From wedding receptions to baby showers to birthday parties, photo booths are all the rage. Skip the expensive rental booth and create a one-of-a-kind booth for your next party or event with our step-by-step instructions.

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Materials Needed:

  • digital point-and-shoot camera
  • camera tripod
  • backdrop stand (optional)
  • backdrop
  • spotlight (optional)
  • lighting umbrella (optional)
  • tape

The Camera Equipment

A basic digital point-and-shoot camera works perfectly for a DIY photo booth. You’ll also need a tripod that’s tall enough to extend to eye level and a remote shutter release for the camera (available online or at camera shops.) A remote shutter release allows guests to take their own photo, letting you enjoy the party instead of playing photographer all night. Some attach to the camera with a cable, others operate wirelessly.

The Lighting

For a truly professional photo booth, good lighting is a must. A spotlight and photography umbrella (available online or at camera supply shops) diffuses the light and adds a flattering glow to friends’ faces. If you opt against lighting equipment, turn your camera’s flash on or place a floor lamp beside the camera facing the backdrop.

The Backdrop

This is where you get to show off your creative skills. A printed fabric backdrop is most common, but why limit yourself to store-bought options? Make one that adds life to the photos.

Create a chevron-inspired backdrop with black foam board, a glue stick and jumbo gold sequins. Draw the chevron stripes using a ruler, then fill in rows of sequins. For a more colorful backdrop, try dipping the tips of coffee filters into multi-hued fabric dyes, then affixing to a foam board for a floral effect. For a simpler backdrop, hang a section of Kraft paper and paint it with gold stripes or polka dots.

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