I've moved on...
...to a different domain. Why, what were you thinking? The truth is, I just woke up one day and decided it's time for a change—a metamorphosis, if you will; or, in layman's terms, if Britney can shave her head, then maybe so can I? Nevertheless, it's been a rather handsome 10 years of talking to you, and thank you for putting up with all my moodswings and terrible dad jokes. Fear not! The hormonal imbalance and jokes are more terrible on CUBICLE, see you there.
Nail polish & Eye palette – Dolce & Gabbana Fall 2015


Click below to watch ↓

In collaboration with CollectPlus, who kindly helped produce this video!

While I’d like to think I have modified and refined some of my online-offline behaviour, Instagram is one beast I still have trouble leaving at the cloakroom at restaurants; one that compels me to publicly perform tai-chi moves above the table that makes my partner shrink into his collar in embarrassment. It also means I’d have deliberately allowed perfectly fine, freshly-cooked food to cool down in the expense of a birds-eye snap of the table. If there’s such a thing as a reverse-microwave, I’ve just invented it. (Is this why mega-grammers just eat salad?) Funny thing is though, it works. Flat-lays statistically ‘do’ better on Instagram and this is probably why I, along with about ten thousand instagirls out there, own a thing of roll-up marble.

There are no equations, or rules – in fact, I’m going to be honest and say nobody really seems to know what ‘flat lay’ means (about 5 gillion results when searched #flatlay, including the odd selfie) – but my trick is to either capture it in the most organic form (i.e come as you are or go super-regimental and curate the crap out of the snap from ground zero. (WOW I poet?) Here’s a video I did with CollectPlus showing you the latter. At the end of the day, it’s not too bad as long as your partner is wearing a turtleneck, and hey, so far it’s the only superpower we’ve been able to obtain = flying 2-feet above stuff. (Coming soon, Avengers: Age of #NoFilter.)

Also, it this all makes me a PRO, then I assume PRO actually is short for ‘PRObably needs a life outside the internet’, which means I am PRO everything in the entire universe.

Write a Comment


  1. aww you are so adorable! I love this video and I am pretty sure I have a marble paper as well at home haha! Love Love and great tip x

  2. This is eye opener! Amazing, Shini!

  3. Great video!


  4. Bwahahaha oy- I loved this because it resonated with me so much! Love your definition of PRO too. It’s the truth! A good shot is worth a thousand words (or double taps), yes?

  5. I actually saw your instagram snap and virtually ran here to warch the video. Thanks for your tips! Usually when I do flatlays it’s just me playing around with items and suddenly realizing that these items would make a good shot..or so I think. I never thought of adding the hastag. Also, I kill real flowers too…My mom says that it’s because I don’t change their water everyday. Why would I? They never finish drinking it anyways.

  6. *watch … I do my best proofreading after I click submit -.-

  7. You are the absolute PRO at creating flatlays! Love the video! You should do more ;)


  8. The guide everyone’s been waiting for!


  9. Such wonderful tips I can take so much from! Thanks Shini :-)

    Jeffrey Chung

  10. That marble backdrop is too beautiful <3 <3 <3


  11. Danielle

    What a fantastic tutorial!

  12. I love this video! So many #flatlaygoals!

    Tessa at Bramble & Thorn

  13. Such a great Idea!!! Thank you for sharing ;-)

  14. I love taking flatlays for my blog or instagram but I usually just wing it so this video was super helpful! I might have to go get some marble effect vinyl for backgrounds and buy some more fake flowers (I don’t use real cos I manage to kill them all the time too lol!)

    Eco and minimalist fashion and beauty blog

  15. Lovely, learning flat lay, hope to perfect my skills soon

  16. I love this! I’ve been looking for new ways to take blog photographs so this is such a lovely, and handy post. Thank you!x

    Lissy | lissyslife.com

  17. omg i use a roll of marble paper for flatlays as well! glad that i’m not the only crazy one haha!


  18. looks great but what Samsung +mpCheers

  19. I had no idea you could buy roll-up marble! I was using my fiancé’s marble cutting board for a while there. This is great to know :)
    Loved this!

  20. Love your flat lays! Do you have any suggestions for a marble slab or tray?!


    COFFEESLAG Rocksbox Review

  21. Thank you! I tend to find that searching ‘marble cutting board‘ does the trick on eBay!

  22. Your feed is one to envy for sure, hence why this post will probably grab a LOT of attention ;) I’m that person that would throw the Instagram for Dummies book out of the window and just arrange things however I see fit, then wondering later why everyone’s photos look so much better than mine haha. I guess I’m just impatient and my idea of a flat lay is throwing all the stereotypical blogger must-haves onto a nice surface and hoping some slapdash editing will do the trick…well, you live and you learn, right?

    The biggest nightmare for me HAS to be shadows. That, and reflective objects/surfaces. It all depends on the lengths you’ll go to for the perfect shot!

    Emma » Paris by Friday

  23. Loved the video and you are so adorable! I also need that marble adhesive in my life. So important for flatlays LOL


  24. Beautiful video!! love all the tips, I am integral obsessed!!! Thanks fro all the info.
    Glamoury Armory Blog 

  25. I never knew how much I needed this tutorial until I saw this video. Thank you! I love the marble background and I always thought that bloggers had a marble surface in their house (haha- how naive!) just ordered the marble backdrop for my photos. Thanks for this tutorial – it is so useful <3


  26. Elizabeth Eugene

    Now I know how to achieve such greatness in a single instagram shot. Thanks! But my feet are sad because they will never walk in those super-cute/adorable sandals TT !!!!

  27. This is such an uplifting, fun video, Shini! I really like your blog: in fact it’s one of the first I’ve ‘officially’ followed on Bloglovin (I’m doing a lot of lurking instead at the moment…), and it’s really cool to see you on film.

    I love the way you write: you’ve got a real talent and a GREAT sense of humour. So I’m really excited that I’ve finished work for the day…now I can spend a good hour trawling through your archives! (Lurker extraordinaire!).

    Hope you have a lovely day.


    p.s – now I want roll-up marble…. I didn’t know that existed!

  28. This is honestly the post I have been waiting for from you ever since the first day I read Park & Cube. You are the flat lay master. Sophie xxx

  29. Hi hi Shini,

    Wow! This is my first seeing you in a video and boy, you do sound quite different then I had expected… oh well, nonetheless, really sooting, though I didn’t expect a huskier lower pitched voice that you would have, looking at your looks *_^ Guess we always have our own little imagination tugged away somewhere till we discover the REAL deal behind it.

    I love how you incorporated your sponsors/brand quite subtly into your video with COLLECT *_^ Yes, I guess the great length we go to these days just to get that shot for IG, though I don’t really capture food shot that much on flatlay, but yes, I have to admit, flatlay does seem to make almost everything look a little prettier, with flowers the more so:))

    Hahaha, I didn’t know that you can buy a marble piece of paper *_^

    Love the way the video is done. Super nice!

    Hope you are having the most beautiful time, you are always my inspiration, even though I may not have said it often enough or drop by frequent enough to tell you so, oh well, but you know how much I do love you, don’t you? haha


  30. Wow Shini,

    As a fledging blogger, I have to say this is probably one of your most helpful posts to me. I’ve always wondered why every fabulous insta-girl seems to have marble EVERYWHERE and now I know the secret. My mother would thank you, since this stops me using her canvases as bases for my flat lays.

    Also, I love the idea of Collet Plus. What a useful concept. This is coming from someone who is fed up of getting the ‘sorry we missed you’ card from the post office: thanks for sharing.

    Patricia x

    Latest post here, please take a look if you have the time :) http://www.viewavenue.com/fashion-culture/2015/8/4/a-fussy-tarians-worst-nightmare

  31. I do love a flat lay and there is a definite technic too it, you’ve it it down chick
    livinginaboxx | bloglovin

  32. I will admit, I too have become one to capture images for my personal Instagram that are more of ‘things’ than of ‘people’. The #flatlay is only as fun as the likes you get and because they ensure more double-taps than pictures of my face, it’s the route I go to these days. Besides, it’s leaves more room to be creative!

  33. […] your blog: How to get the perfect flat lay for your pictures, the best hashtags to use on Instagram for your blog, + amazing tools to use for […]

  34. Hello from another PRO :P

  35. These are great tips! Will be trying them out very soon for my insta!

    Agnes x


  36. […] Are Mary Kate and Ashley your style icons? Then you’ll love Han Tai Tai Si Wu Yin’s pretty, delicate and feminine accessories. Made with 925 silver, their picture perfect pieces will go with pretty much any outfit (or marble flatlay). […]

  37. sute a cute and informational video! Love it! :)

  38. sute a cute and informational video! Love it! :)

  39. […] Park & Cube Flat Lay How to (+ video) […]