I made a really cheap light box ($5 tops) out of foam board and used my desk lamp to bounce light onto it. You can also use fun fabrics, scrapbook paper, or hang earrings off of teacups. A white background (or black for white/light pieces) is good to show detail, but colorful backgrounds make the image more interesting. I took a picture of one of my bracelets on a railing next to a window with a building thunderstorm in the background -- not the best, but it looked cool!
My Joann's has headbands in the beading section -- did you try there? Sometimes I also get my supplies from sellers on Etsy, though it's not the most budget-friendly option. Start stalking garage sales?