My amazingly talented friend Ela over at Itsy Photography and I like to do trades every once in a while and she recently asked me to make her a posing fabric stand like the one I use. I figured I'd go ahead and slap together a tutorial of the process to help out anyone interested in putting their own together. The total cost of this project is less than $40 if you've got access to a saw and you can complete this in one afternoon (including shopping) easily! This is not a fancy shmancy tutorial...there are literally kids playing with my measuring tapes (and subsequently getting whipped in the face by the retracting tape) and adorable babies actively trying to destroy the stand over here as I work. I found the most time consuming part was the measuring, planning, and running to the hardware store to grab supplies. Since I've done the planning for you here, you should be able to put your own together, lickety split!
Six 3/4" x 10' pvc pipes
Six 3/4" T connectors
Four 3/4" elbows
Four 3/4" three way elbows
Optional: pvc glue
Saw--I used a miter saw-- (or ask them to cut your pipes at the hardware store)
Here's what your connectors will look like. Be sure to check them at the hardware store...some have threads in them or have multiple sized openings. You want the slip on kind with no threads and all openings to be 3/4". There's nothing worse than going to put a project together and finding you've got the wrong pieces!
Once you've got your supplies, you will need to cut your 10' pipes into the proper sized pieces. Here is how I broke up my pipes (there will be some leftover pieces on some of your pipes which you can toss or save for another project):
Pipe 1: five 21" segments
Pipe 2: one 21" and two 44" segments
Pipe 3: one 44", one 38", and two 17" segments
Pipe 4: one 38" and two 33" segments
Pipe 5: four 23" segments
Pipe 6: two 33" segments
I labeled the pieces with the size as I was measuring to make putting it together easier.
This is what they look like all laid out according to size. The 38" pieces are optional...I'll explain below. The height of your posing surface will be the 21" pieces plus the height that the connectors add (about 2-3" more but don't quote me on that). My posing surface is a little less than two feet so this is the right height for me. If your posing bag or table is taller or shorter, you'll want to adjust the height as needed.
The hard part is over! Now all that's needed is to put the pieces together using the connectors like this (adorable baby not required):
I like my posing fabric nice and taut and I've found it can be a little droopy in the back at the sides if not clipped to something. I couldn't find any type of connectors that would allow me to attach pipes diagonally from the middle sides going up to the top back piece so I jimmy rig the two optional 38" pipe pieces with duct tape and/or yarn/rope to create a diagonal slant so that I have something to clip the rising fabric to on the sides to keep everything nice and tight. The whole point of a posing fabric stand like this is so clip your blankets and fabric tightly so you don't have any wrinkles. I HATE editing wrinkles...such a waste of time!
This is how mine is put together...it's been moved several times and thrown together with pieces I had lying around so don't judge all of the crusty tape residue!
You can secure some of your pieces with PVC glue (it's very potent stuff so be sure to do this outdoors). Once the glue dries, the pieces will NOT come apart so I glued only a select few pieces together so that I could still break it down into small sections to be able to transport easily when needed. You can see in the picture above that the bottom piece popped out of its connector in a spot where I don't have it glued. If you don't glue SOME pieces together, pieces will constantly pop apart and drive you crazy so I do recommend strategically gluing.
Now all you've got to do is sweep up all of the PVC "crumbs" that are likely scattered all over your floor and add a posing bag/table and posing fabric!
I use an electric blanket as my bottom layer, followed by a nice plush white blanket to add some extra cushion and to help soften bumps that you might otherwise get when using posing pillows and other supports. I top those off with each session's posing fabrics and clip into place (large clips can be purchased online or at any hardware store...I prefer ones with rubber tips so that posing fabrics don't get snagged).
Ta Da! You will have zero wrinkles in your fabric and a gorgeous, natural blanket fade (no blanket fade actions/brushes required in editing!).
Here is a resulting shot of this setup. Zero editing done to the posing fabric!
What are you waiting for? Go make your own and let me know how it turns out!