Anyone who has ever tried to take pictures for a professional or personal project knows that a great backdrop can really make all the difference. However, if you don’t have a store-bought stand to hang your backdrop, it can be tricky to figure out how to execute the perfect setup.
How to hang a backdrop without a stand? You can hang your backdrop over a curtain rod, or pin or even upholster your backdrop to the wall. If you would like a more long-term option, you can also DIY your own backdrop stand using a few simple pieces from the hardware store.
In this blog post, we’ll show you four different ways to hang a backdrop without a store-bought stand. Read on to find out how you can achieve the perfect look for your photos.
Use A Curtain Rod
The simplest option to hang a backdrop without a stand is to hang your backdrop over a curtain rod, or even the shower rod where you hang your shower curtains.
This method is pretty simple, since you can just drape your backdrop over the curtain rod and use some clothing pins to secure the backdrop to the curtain rod.
One disadvantage of this method is that your backdrop will be against a window, which can mess up the lighting for your photoshoot.
Unless you have great blackout curtains underneath the backdrop, or you’re shooting at night, you can expect the sunlight from the window to affect your shoot.
Another disadvantage of this method is that your backdrop won’t be held taut, so you can expect to see some folds and wrinkles in the backdrop – similar to how your curtains are hanging.
This may not be a big minus, but if you are using your backdrop as a green screen, the effects may be affected if there are folds in the backdrop.
Here’s a great example from The Elle Factor on YouTube.
Pin Your Backdrop To The Wall
If you don’t love the lighting of the window, you can also check whether your backdrop has grommets. The grommets will allow you to hang the backdrop over any wall hooks, and you can use wall hooks to anchor your backdrop to the wall.
You can use removable wall hooks to make the setup more flexible. For a more secure, permanent fix, you can also screw some hooks to the wall. This option is also better if your backdrop is heavier and needs more support.
Alternatively, if your backdrop is made of paper, you can also use anything you want to attach it to the wall, including blue tacks, pins, or even painter’s tape. As long as the backdrop stays on the wall, you can use these simple tricks to secure your backdrop.
If you use tape, make sure to use painter’s tape so that you don’t damage your wall paint when you peel it off. This method is quite simple and budget friendly. If you are using a paper backdrop, you also don’t have to worry about folds and creases in the backdrop, since the paper will lay flat on the wall.
However, this setup is only temporary. Chances are, if you want to reuse the backdrop or if you want to move it to another location, you’ll have to discard the paper and use a brand-new paper backdrop, which is not ideal.
Upholster Your Backdrop To The Wall
If you want the backdrop to be a permanent fixture in your studio, you can also make the backdrop a part of the wall itself by upholstering the backdrop to the wall with staples.
This method is suitable for those who have their own studio and will need to use the backdrop over and over again, like a green screen. It’s also quite suitable for heavy backdrops that are difficult to hang, since you only need to do it once and it will stay fixed forever.
An advantage of this method is that you don’t have to worry about the creases and textures in the backdrop. Since it is stapled to the wall, it will stay flat and still as you shoot.
However, this method is only useful if you’re sure you don’t want to move your backdrop. As you can imagine, removing the backdrop and moving it to another location is a big DIY project that you don’t want to do every time you set up for a photoshoot.
DIY Backdrop Stand
A backdrop stand is the best way to ensure that your backdrop is kept taut without any winkles, while still remaining portable so you can move the backdrop to different areas in your studio for different lighting setups.
If you won’t want to buy a store-bought backdrop stand, you can also build your own backdrop stand using simple supplies from the hardware store.
Here, we’re essentially building a frame made from long wooden dowels or PVC pipes to secure your backdrop to. If you don’t know anything about woodworking, you can use PVC pipes, which is the easier option.
- Four PVC T-pipes (these have T-shapes to attach three pipes together)
- Six PVC L-pipes (these have L-shapes which will act as your corner pieces)
- Six 1-meter PVC pipes that work with the T-pipes and elbow pipes (these are the body pieces)
- Four 50 cm PVC pipes that work with the T-pipes and elbow pipes (these are the leg pieces)
First, attach three 1-meter PVC pipes to the T-pipe, then cap one end of the long edge (the top of the T) with an L-pipe, and cap the short edge (the body of the T) and the other end of the long edge with two T pipes.
Then, attach the remaining three 1-meter PVC pipe to the open L-pipe and T-pipe in the middle. Connect the opposite edge with another L pipe. Your frame should look like this: ᖴᖷ with two T-pipes at the bottom for the legs.
Then, attach the four 50 cm PVC pipes to the bottom T-pipes for the legs. You can also purchase wheels to attach to the legs of the stand to make it more portable as well.
If you want the stand to be a bit more stable, you can use epoxy glue or even super glue to secure the joints, so that the stand can support heavy backdrops. Alternatively, you can also leave the PVC pipes as is, so that you can easily disassemble the stand for storage.
To use this PVC stand, you can drape the backdrop over the stand, and use large clothing pins to secure the edges of the backdrop to the three pipes (top and two sides). Make sure to keep the fabric taut so that there are no wrinkles.
Although this method is a bit more labor-intensive, the result will definitely be more stable and more satisfying than the other methods!
Take a look at this tutorial from Gabrielle Ishell on YouTube.