Backdrop storage problem? I have a great idea!

I purchased some new backgrounds for my product photography clients, to give us some new choices. I have fabric and I like it, so I clicked a sale link for fabric ones, but once I got to the site, I choose patterned backdrops and ended up with vinyl.


I was going to add a rod in the closet that stores my lights and hang the new backdrops in there, so I didn’t have to keep going to our own closet to get them. Then I looked at where to place the rod, and without always making my lights crammed in the closet down low, I couldn’t reach the rod to hang them anyway. Then I asked hubby to add me a sturdy hook that extends some into the room like he has in his garage.

Backdrop storage (5).jpg

Then the (really poorly wrapped) backdrops arrived from Backdrop Outlet and they were vinyl, not fabric. I looked back, and sure enough, they sent me exactly what I ordered. I can’t believe the ends were not damaged!

I didn’t really want to hang them like I would with fabric because they’d have to fold in half lengthwise to fit. Even if I didn’t put a crease in the loosely folded over vinyl to make it fit in the depth of the closet it was still going to be a bend and make it bulky. I didn’t really want them standing on end and messing the ends up. I thought about making a clipboard with heavy duty clips to roll and clip them at the back of the closet. Then while looking for ideas, a Christmas wrapping paper holder popped up in my browser. While not long enough, and still making my rolled vinyl stand on end, it gave me an idea. So I  looked online to buy a long under the bed/sofa wrapping paper storage bin or rifle case. Found a 40″ in red. Not what I had in mind. Not finding something that’d work well, we taped two cardboard storage boxes I already had together. So the only expense was in the tape, well that and the new backdrops and time.

What a great idea, I thought to myself. Then realized it was too tall to go under the sofa in the studio. No problem, I’ll put in our bedroom under the bed. It is right next to the studio and the only family member who’d mind is Tyler, as under our bed is his safe spot when he gets scared or someone is here.

Backdrop storage (7)

My vinyl backgrounds are only 3’x4′ but I have some 5′ wide fabric I could put on a tube and roll in there too so I made it around 62″ wide. No sense wasting the cardboard box. Now, all it needs is a few handles a cat won’t chew on, so I can easily pull it out.

So, we taped the two together to make one large box and I’m just loving this idea. I’m wondering why I didn’t see this on Pinterest or on image searches for “backdrop storage”

I print off a reference sheet w. numbers and photos of the backdrops because, well that’s just something a type A person does. I take a sharpie and right on the back corners the number and short description. I roll them the way the came, then decide to roll them long ways. I place the rolls in the newly created box, snap a few pictures to share with others BUT, guess what? it won’t go under our bed.

I did measure the height, I measured the width, but I completely forgot to look under our bed and forgot we put wood supports under the slats with support down the center of the bed.

I guess we could move that last support up a bit from the bottom- it only needs a few inches to fit, but if it’s just going under the edge and not way up under the bed I’m going to wish it was a black box so it blended in as a shadow. I mean, I did take the time to spray paint all my white under the bed plastic storage bins black, so they didn’t show.

snowI just stopped. I have stuff to do while we have power before the December-snowpocalypse they are calling for this weekend.

Then my ah-ha, I am a moron-moment hit and I turned the long case longways under the bed. Duh. Wala! it now has the same cut out handle it had to pull it out too. Sometimes I worry about my brain. Are you at all surprised I shared how I got here instead of just telling you my idea?

Made me think of Trinity… she could never just go from point A to B either.

I think I’ll like the vinyl, I know I like it better having a place to store it without messing up the ends. I’ve never worked with muslin. I have worked with Diamond Cloth and paper, but paper tries my patience every time.

Hope this helps some other photographer out there!

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