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We meet a bespoke prop stylist

We interview prop stylist Daniel Staughton, tailor of our 'Atlantis Dreams' underwater shoot, for a glimpse into the wonderful world of creating bespoke props...

Delicious Charlie & the Chocolate Factory themed props
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What is your job?

I am a prop stylist. My job involves theming a story. With my creative background in cooking and skills as a tailor I am able to offer a different dimension creating bespoke props.

What have you created for Junior?

For Junior, most recently, I made for the Atlantis Dreams underwater shoot a horsehair tail, chiffon wrist adornments, hair decoration, a hoop with tendrils and tailoring where needed. Also many other props for other shoots including oversized sugar lollipops, a circus banner, balancing cups, clown shoes, strongman weights and rosettes.

What did you enjoy about working on our underwater fashion shoot (as featured in the February 2011 issue of Junior)?

It was my first underwater shoot and a good challenge to create the right movement within the props.The colours and flexibility of the materials I'd tailored worked differently when submerged in water. 

What are your favourite kind of props to make?

I enjoy props that are real. I made a 9ft Punch and Judy stall for a summer shoot on the beach in Broadstairs, Kent. With a clock leaning beside it saying 'Next Show at 2:30pm'. A young boy came running over when we were chatting on a break and called out to his family "the next show is at 2:30pm!" Another time I'd made oversized sugar lollipops for a story based on Charlie and the Chocolate Factory (see above). To see the reaction on 'Verruca Salt's' face knowing it was sugar and she could eat them, made the effort worthwhile! The prop was brought to life and for me that is how you get the best picture.

What is the most unusual prop you have made?

I think it has to be a replica G-Plan two-seater settee. I made it out of re-cycled newspaper for an art exhibition using a paper log maker and perspex fabricated moulds. Friends and neighbours helped deliver newspaper stacks to my doorstep each week. Over 900 newspapers were used to create it. I still have it and its really comfortable.  

What is the best thing about working with children? 

Their imagination. Children get into character in an instant. Creating the prop which helps the photographer capture that candid moment makes it enjoyable. 

Thank you, Daniel.

Make sure to check out more of Daniel's amazing creations online

Also, have a read of some our other fashion interviews, including 'Street Smart' stylist Mindi Smith, celebrated designer Zandra Rhodes and the fabulous Stella McCartney.

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