Natural light is your friend. Especially when you are just starting out. In order to capture your image correctly in camera you need a good light source. Typically outdoors is the perfect place to find that.
However, we live in Wisconsin so during the winter alternative light sources are a must. There are a lot of different ways to do this but the easiest thing to start with is a window or door. Last week I whipped up this little DIY heart backdrop for some Valentine's day photos. My set up was very simple - a white wall next to the patio door provided enough space and light to grab a few shots of my little one.
Here's a pull back of my set up. The heart backdrop was simply adhered to the wall by strings. The box gave a little more height to get my subject closer to where the hearts start on the string. The fur provides a little texture as well as a good way to blend the bottom with the top of the image to take away from the fact that it is just a plain old wall. Another time saving tip is to remove all objects and distractions from the frame of your shot. If there's a picture frame hanging on the wall take it down, debris on the floor give it a quick sweep or vacuum before setting up your shot.
Here's a very simple breakdown of the settings. The more light you have, the lower your settings can be on your camera. Set your ISO as low as possible (I like to stay under 500 indoors during the day time) and your aperture can vary depending upon how much detail in the backdrop you want to see and again how much light you have. Remember the lower the aperture number the more background blur you will have and the more light you will let it. If you have a wiggly subject the lower the better.