Hooray! F-I-N-A-L-L-Y, I have the Pizzazzerie Prop Room tour up. I never intended for it to take me quite so long, but I’m one a one-woman show over here. Huge thanks for your patience on this. I wasn’t planning on even posting about this room, but there was overwhelming interest every time I shared behind-the-scenes on Instagram, so alas, you requested it, and here we are!
When I visited the Southern Living Headquarters last fall to create some videos for them, I was blown away by their space. It’s truly the holy grail. Mine has been like this for about a year, and it’s not nearly as fabulous as theirs, but I’m super proud of my little collection. It’s what allows me to create content for you guys, and for that, I’m so grateful!
One of our local Nashville TV stations even did a segment from the prop room last year. That was super cool! I’ll see if I can track it down.
THE PROP ROOM SPACE
When I first toured our current house, I was excited about the opportunity to use this space. My house has a bit of an odd layout. It includes a “Mother-in-Law Suite”, but it’s not separate-feeling from the house. It flows quite nicely so we don’t use that space separately “as such”. It’s an extra (smaller) kitchen (hallelujah) that’s off our main one, a cozy den, guest room – and – this extra garage space. It’s a car & a half (car + golf cart) space. So it became the prop room, since we have our main car garage for our cars.
Keep in mind, since it’s a garage by nature, it’s hot. Or cold in the winter. So it’s not perfect, but it’s perfect for a prop room. Considering, this is a full-time job (styling tablescapes for brands, other sites, and Pizzazzerie), we absolutely love having this space for this use.
DESIGN DETAILS OF THE PROP ROOM
First off, I had the whole thing painted white. Umber White by PPG, to be exact. I thought about having the floors redone, but alas, too much fuss. It’s just a space to store the items I use. Next up, a trip to heaven aka The Container Store.
- We love the InterMetro Shelving and used it for 90% of the space. You can customize the shelves for regular shelves, wood shelves, baskets, etc. They come in a few colors, I chose all white for a clean look. We basically lined almost all the walls in these shelves.
- The Basket Shelves are a perfect addition to the InterMetro shelving so we used them to hold “messy” things like a million packs of cocktail napkins and such.
- For fabrics, we wanted something very sturdy (we had outgrown cheaper hanging racks, fabrics weigh a lot), so we splurged for this Double Coat Rack from Ballard Designs. It’s amazing. I can hang tablecloths and runners on both sides. The front/main side is all our main colored tablecloths and the back are the seasonal/unique ones.
- One of my favorite sections of the room is the “napkin wall” which we made by stacking lots of these shoe holders from Home Depot together. I had previously used this type of shoe holder over a door, but we outgrew it, ultimately. It’s a great option though!
Q: What’s in the middle of the prop room?
A: The shelves and storage organizers all line the walls of the prop room. The middle is open, wide open space! I currently have 2 full sized dining tables in it that I use to set up shoots. One is a farm table I had made. The other is a gorgeous outdoor white dining table. I also have a few stacks of chairs, etc.
I ADORE having all my napkins on display. It really helps me design when I can see everything so very clearly – ROYGBIV – hooray! I can mix and match and design so much easier. I love “plastic bins” but you end up digging through everything, unfolding them all, and shoving it all back in, making a mess. This is so much easier. We used THESE shoe holders to create this “napkin wall” in the prop room. More details below.
As you can see above, I have extra cubbies for more napkins in the future as well as slots for napkin rings or other “random” items. That’s one thing to note when organizing a space, be aware you’ll be getting more items. If you don’t have extra space, just keep in mind that you might have to get rid of something when you buy something new.
Next up are tablecloths and runners. I typically find mine from HomeGoods, but some are from my Mother, and others are fabric that we have created into tablecloths or runners. The front side houses the basic colored tablecloths and on the back are additional ones, seasonal ones, and more unique tablecloths.
Before I had them organized like this, I would forget what I owned and end up buying something that I already had. Such a waste. So now I can very clearly see what I have! Plus, they don’t get very wrinkled when they’re hung like this. I used this hanging rack here. And I use velvet hangers from HomeGoods.
My favorite wall in the Prop Room is this CAKE STAND WALL. I have dreamed forever of having a space for all my cake stands. I wish I could say this is all of them, but I have a few favorites throughout my house (in my dining room, office, and kitchen). So this is *most* of them, however. They can be a tricky thing to store so I recommend having some sort of shelves for these.
On the top of these shelves I have drink dispensers, large lanterns, extra bulky items, etc.
Glassware! I use a lot of glassware in my job. I knew I wanted it displayed by color. I also wish I could say this was all my glassware, but not even close. I have about this same amount inside in my kitchen and dining room. Sometimes I keep “one” glass out here from a set so I don’t forget what I have.
Q: How many of a set do you buy (plates, glassware, etc)?
A. This is a question I get asked quite a bit! I always recommend 8. Whenever I’ve bought just 6, there is usually a time I’m using them and wish I had 2 more, and you usually can’t find them again. So just get 8 and you’ll be set.
Q: Do Blakely and George break things when they’re in the Prop Room?
A: No, thankfully. I’m sure if my daughter were younger, I’d have to monitor her more closely, but she respects the prop room (ha). On one extra shelving unit, I have a big bin on the bottom where I store leftover mis-match plates, cups, straws, and other party items. They’re mostly paper or melamine. She knows those are hers and she *regularly* sets little party tables with them.
As you can see above, I use little clear craft holders (they were super cheap in the Target dollar section and I spray painted them white) to hold utensils. Naturally, when I use these, I rinse and clean these, though they stay very clean. I’m a clean freak about certain areas of my house, this is one!
On the bottom I have paper plates stacked all together by color. In the next shelf over, I have paper napkins. I hoard these, apparently.
Q: Do you rent out your items locally?
A: I don’t, they’re all personal items I’ve collected for years and many were passed down from my family. I wouldn’t feel comfortable trying to manage a rental situation with all of them as most are breakable.
Ribbon is one of those things that is so hard to store. It’s very easy to end up with so.much.ribbon. I like to be able to grab a spool and take it to another place (wherever I’m working) so I needed them accessible. This ribbon wall is definitely one of my favorites in the prop room.
I keep it divided by type of ribbon – sort of. The top is for large gift ribbons or any large-spool ribbons. Middle is basic satins. Bottom is twines, tulles, and raffias. It works well, and I’m pretty sure I haven’t bought ribbon since I organized this wall because I realized just how much I had all over the house.
I also have basic food styling props from glasses and jars to wood and marble cutting boards. Food styling is such a passion of mine that I can’t help but accumulate the perfect pieces for photographic food. Many of my go-to’s are kept in my kitchen, but I have extras out here.
I also have stacks of vases and candles and pretty much everything else that you’d see on a tablescape or in a food shot!
There you have it! Scroll up for links to the shelves, hanging rack, and more. If you have a question I didn’t answer here, leave me a comment below. And if you share a photo from this post, be sure to credit and link back!
The only thing that isn’t really shown is just a “random shelf” with party hats, sprinkles, paper cups. That and a section of placemats, paper, etc. That’s basically it! I’ll try to some Instagram Stories videos of the space, but this is basically it! Ta-da! :) When I’m not in the prop room working on a shoot, I’m in my office (a small sunroom in my house)!