Shooting outdoors indoors: Behind the scenes on my Poundland Summer 2016 outdoor shoot


Shooting outdoors indoors: Behind the scenes on my Poundland Summer 2016 shoot

Now the sun is shining it’s hard to look back to March when I headed off to Halifax to shoot the Summer garden range for Poundland. This was the first Summer shoot for them and as the weather was – well lets just say a bit iffy at that time of year so it made sence to use a studio.

Prodoto is where we shot Christmas last year and it is a fantastic set up. As usual after a meeting with the Poundland team to see the products and to discuss the shots required I go away and draw how I think the shots should look – from furniture and accessories to food and flowers. Prodoto get sent the drawing and then make the set to match. Exactly. We chose colours for fences and used as many of the Poundland products as we could.

Shooting the outdoors lawn – kinda!

Our set was huge. On one side we had a lawn with green fencing and a small flower bed edged with a mini Poundland fence. No matter how many plants you buy you always need more. We had to keep moving them around to fill each shot – even though we spent a few hundred quid on planting. As it was so early in the year it was hard to find plants with leaves let alone flowers. The huge bamboo proved very useful – especially when it came to shooting solar powered lights. I think I still have some of those leaves in my car – boy did that think molt.

The Set IMG_1570

As you can see from my shot above there were foam boards placed behind the fencing. The blue skies and trees were added afterwards digitally. It’s amazing what can be done in post production.

Controlling the sunshine is a major win when shooting outdoors for this kind of feature. Our fab photographer Paul Young went the extra mile – quite literally to make the sun shine naturally. IMG_1572 (1)



Why shooting outdoor solar lights is trickyShooting Alfresco indoors with Poundland

The solar lights are so effective that we had to tape up the solar panels to trick them into thinking it was night time. Since shooting them these light bulb solar lights have been flying off the shelves. They’re so cute. I’ve got one hanging in my garden and it’s really cute and effective – especially when you have a few hanging together.Shooting_Outdoors_INDOORS.jpgShooting Alfresco indoors with Poundland

Garden accessories

There are some really fab garden accessories this year. We shot these on an old set of steps I picked up at a boot sale (best place to go propping in my books). The studio looks really dark in my shot but as you can see below the end result was anything but gloomy.IMG_1597

Shooting_Outdoors_INDOORSA few other shots

I can’t finish this post without sharing just a few other shots. I was very proud of my scaffolding board bench which I made with my own fair hands, and the marketing manager liked so much she took it home for her garden. Love these herb pots. Shooting_Outdoors_INDOORS Shooting_Outdoors_INDOORS.jpgShooting_Outdoors_INDOORS Shooting_Outdoors_INDOORS Shooting_Outdoors_INDOORS

It’s always great to style shoots for Poundland. Apart from the amazement of the standard and quality of the products  “How much is this? It can’t be a £1” is heard on every shoot by people who are on the set, but the team is an absolute pleasure to work with. Laughter all the way – even when we’re up against it with time and delivery schedules.

So, what are you waiting for? Get down to Poundland and get gardening!

EmmaMT x


Stationery love with Hema

Stationery Love

Stationery love with Hema

My daughterlings have a thing for stationery. Pens, rubbers, notebooks and rulers (how many rulers does one kid really need? Fifteen in the case of Darcey!) You name it – if it’s stationary they love it, so that was the very big hint I should have adhered to and left them at home when I went to buy some from new office stationary from Hema for myself.

Hema – in case you haven’t discovered it yet is the fantastic shop from the Netherlands. It’s packed full of beautiful homewares, kids toys and clothes, crafting accessories and my absolute favourite MARZIPAN! All clean, crisp designs and modern styles. It also has a terrific array of gorgeous stationary – the kind you want to put in your home office and just look at it – not touch! Just look.

They’re on line but there are shops opening up all over the country. At the moment there’s Bromley, Kingston, Victoria, Birmingham and Stanstead airport but watch this space.

Stationary Love with Hema

Beau style

You may remember me mentioning that Beau chose the whole scheme for her bedroom based on a Hema notebook, well that seems to have become a whole style ethic. As soon as we walked into Hema she headed right for the stationary. The same notebook is still available so I bought a couple for Darcey and me. I’ve painted diagonal stripes on the chimney breast in Beau’s room and she now has a handy shelf edged with grey ribbon – the perfect place to keep all her pens and pencils. That original notebook takes pride of place.

Stationary Love with Hema

When I say my girls have a deep love of stationary I know exactly where they get it from. When I get a new notebook, or ream of printer paper I just want to sit it on the desk and leave it there all neat and new. Not touched or used. It’s the same with brand new pencils. When Beau asked for pencils in the shop I thought ‘yeah that’s a good idea’ and then I saw them. A pack of twelve immaculately white pencils all with the longest sharpest tips. I got the grey mug to place them in for her shelf and they look great. Ever the interior Stylist – I didn’t want her to mix those pencils up with anything else. They just look so good on the shelf on their own, don’t you think? And yes we couldn’t resist buying two packs to really fill that mug.

I may or may not have a matching mug full of pencils too!

Mint green

Hema has a great range of tableware but I don’t think the fab mini bowls are really designed with drawing pin storage in mind, but they look so good in there and it has to be done. Anything mint green is seen as a ‘great accessory for my bedroom’  now including the cute purses.

We loved all the fun paper clips but the speech bubbles won out. Stationary Love with Hema

Illustrators dream

There are two things that I continuously head into Hema for, one is the chocolate covered marzipan and the other is their packs of pens. Their fine nib pens are my absolute favourite to the point that I buy them then hide them, only allowing myself to take one out of the pack at a time. I savour them. No kids allowed!

When I get commissioned to style a press launch or photo shoot I draw out my ideas for the client to visualise. These are the only pens I use. They have just the right thickness of nib and are lightand flow easily. Lately I’ve been adding touches of colour to my drawings to bring out themes more clearly. Stationary_love_with_Hema

What about Darcey?

I hear you cry. Well fear not, she got a fair stash of stationary too – mainly in the form of Washi tapes. Six tapes for £2 and at 8m long I think you’ll struggle to find a better deal. But it was the cute wash bag that really caught her eye. She’s a nine year old who I am so going to have to curb the make up when she’s ….. well I was going to say older but let’s face it, I’m already having to stop her wearing makeup to school! This bag is just the right size to stash a weekend getaway’s worth of beauty treatments. Stationary Love with Hema

So after our little sprint to Hema I cam away with a few office supplies and two very happy kids.



Disclaimer: Thanks to Hema for supplying all the stationery and accessories for this post. All thoughts and ramblings are my own.