One issue I always had was that virtually all of the walls in my house are plain magnolia paint. I happen to like it from a decor point of view but from a photographic backdrop point of view, it's not very inspiring. I didn't really know how to resolve it though.
Earlier this year, I came across an online photography course aimed at crafters. The first two weeks taught photography techniques, including lighting, exposure and focus, the second two week module concentrated in styling products.
To say the course transformed my product photos is an understatement. I no longer use my camera in the auto mode and adjust the light and focus manually. More importantly than that though, I learnt to fake it. With the help of very simple props, you can create all sorts of different photographic scenarios to stage products to their fullest. My favourite prop of all is rolls of wallpaper which can very simply be dropped down behind the product to create different backgrounds. No more magnolia paint. With so many different wallpapers available, you can create fake wooden panelling, bricks or use flowery designs. Whatever fits with your products.
My kitchen is still my studio but you wouldn't know from the photos, they have been taken anywhere, even a professional studio.
If you are interested in the course I took, visit www.photocraft.org, I would highly recommend it.