Tips for Setting Up a Buffet

Setting Up a Buffet Table


At a buffet, the main focus is the table filled with flavorful food. An easy way to make the presentation especially attractive is to create risers in varying heights. You don't need special equipment to achieve this look...everyday items in your home will work just fine.

Position the table in the room where you'll be serving the food. Place selected risers on the table to create different heights (below right). For our risers, we used sturdy boxes, a phone book and a coffee can. Other ideas include hardcover books, inverted cake pans, clay pots and metal buckets. Make sure the risers are big enough so serving platters sit steadily.

Drape a tablecloth over the top and form around the risers so the cloth won't pull when platters of food are set on top (above right).

Tips for an Eye-Catching Buffet Table

Pretty pedestals. In addition to risers, use cake pedestals in varying heights as serving trays. Don't have any? Create your own with invereted cups or glasses and pretty plates.

Festive fillers. After you set up the buffet table, there may be areas that could use some filling in. Here are some items you can weave around your serving platters and bowls:

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  • Ornaments, small wrapped boxes, nativity sets and Christmas villages.
  • Christmas ribbons of varying sizes and colors to tie into your color scheme. Curl loosely and wrap around other elements on the table.
  • Fresh and artificial evergreen boughs, pine cones, berries and fruits such as pears and apples.