Random: That Time I Fixed My Lighting Situation… (DIY Light Tent)

I’ve been told that my photos look great now. “How did you do it?” I promised a friend or two that I would post this for them. Ladies and gentlemen, Glitter.Gloss.Garbage’s DIY Light Tent.

I had a problem

The light tents I was creating (out of boxes) were crap. They would collapse after about three months. Which means I have to do everything all over again. Stalk the liquor store for a bog box, buy more poster board, cut and construct. That was becoming a pain in the butt. I saw somewhere online that they were selling this one thingie (yes, thingie) for like $175 and said to myself “Girl what?”. I wish I would pay $175 for anything like that. So I did some brainstorming and thought about my needs.

I needed

A lighting situation in which I could take photos of items big and small. I needed enough width for something like a flat iron, enough height for a tall bottle of lotion, or body wash. I needed it white, and I needed  more light. Ok…

Gathered my tools

1 Rubbermaid storage tote 50 Qt (clear)  (dimensions Size: 26.7″ L x 15.8″ W x 10.8″ H) $8

1 Can Valspar Spray Paint for plastic $4.49

3 Binder clips $1.00 for a bag of 20 at Office Depot

1 Sheet of poster board $3.00 for a pack with like 10 sheets in it. It’s not the huge size board, it’s a tad smaller

1 knife

1 gas stove



Swag (yes, you are gonna need a little confidence)

Time to construct

1. Get your tote and go to the stove (now, if you have a better way to do this then by all means). Heat up a knife that you don’t use much anymore, and saw away until the front of the container is gone

2. Spray paint it white (please wear a mask, I was nauseated after I was done)

3. Let it dry


Now while you are waiting on that to dry, go to Lowes and get two of those clip on lamps ($8.99 each) and a pack of daylight light bulbs. I got the Sylvania 23 watt bulbs ($8.99 for a two pack). They let off good, clean white light.




By now, your box should be dry. Take your poster and clip it (with the binder clips) at the top and far back of the box. Guess what? You are finished!

I have a table that I use in the back of the den (AKA ‘my office’) and I sit my lightbox on the table, clip the lamps on the edge of the table and work away!

Photos taken with my new light tent:




If you have any questions, please feel free to ask me! Smile

More about Aprill

Aprill Coleman is an award-winning beauty, lifestyle and wellness blogger and freelance writer based in Jackson, Mississippi.

11 thoughts on “Random: That Time I Fixed My Lighting Situation… (DIY Light Tent)

  1. Mercedes Epps

    you had me scared at the stove, thinking what the heck is the stove for, it looks great. Good idea!


    1. GlitterGlossGarbage

      hehe thanks!


  2. Marilyn

    Your pictures do look great! That’s easy enough that I could totally do it myself too. Thank you so much for the tutorial.


    1. GlitterGlossGarbage

      no problem love!


  3. Rai

    Looks great! So you don’t use flash when you take the photos right?


    1. GlitterGlossGarbage

      no flash 😉


  4. Cosmetics Aficionado

    This looks great! It would work for larger items too.


    1. GlitterGlossGarbage

      It does work really well for large items! Thanks!


  5. Amber

    This is genius!!


  6. Blue-Eyed Julie

    Ok, 2 years later… Are you still using this setup? Trying to figure out its durability 🙂 Thanks so much for the great tips!


    1. GlitteryGlossy

      I am so so so so so so sorry for not responding sooner! I am not using this set up anymore. I moved last year and my office got bigger. I also wanted to take photos of larger items (this is perfect for small things) so I created a new set up (I should probably blog it) and gave my light tent away to a friend that needed it for his fashion projects.


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