How to Build a Simple Buffetscape
NOTE: I have a 48" square counter height table. The room is square so I have it turned 45 degrees, basically, diamonded in a square room. One point of the diamond is what I wanted to be the front for this project.
Step 1 - Know your menu and the serving dishes you will use. You can't build if you don't know what materials you are going to use.
In this example, my event is a cocktails and hors d’oeurves get together in my home. I am going use a tropical theme. Below is a list of the menu and the serving dish I will use for each:
Assorted Fresh Vegetables - Basket
Shrimp Coleslaw - Glass Bowl
Spinach dip in bread bowl with chips - Started with blue platter, switched to bigger glass platter
Assorted Finger Desserts - 3 Tired Rack
Assorted Pinwheels - Glass Platter
I pull all my serving dishes and racks and have them ready. I “shop” around my house for tropical items I might use for décor on the table. I also have ready any tables cloths or fabric that I will use as accent. All Items are placed within easy grabbing distance and I start…
NOTE: My table is not slick so I can place my items directly on it and then blanket it with my linens or fabric. If you are using banquet tables (or any table with a slick surface) at a venue or in your home, I would suggest clothing it with your floor length table cloth (or cloth and skirt it) first. Banquet tables are notoriously slick. The cloth will keep your dishes and décor from slipping and sliding. After you have placed everything, go back and cover with another cloth of the same color so it will blend. You will use accenting fabrics later.
Step 2 - I like to use one tall item of décor (think centerpiece) and build from there. I call it my base item. In this case I want to use a whimsical palm tree with hanging candles as my base item. I place it first. Then begin adding the other dishes and some of the larger décor items I want to use.
I have books, boxes and anything I can use as a "riser" to add height where needed. Please, only use sturdy items. You don't want a guest inadvertently knocking into the table and have things topple. (fig. 1)
Step 3 - Once you are sure where your larger decor and food items will be placed, cover your risers with your table cloth or fabric. Dont pull the linens or fabric tight. Let them drape and have wrinkles. This adds interest and opportunities for other decor. (fig 2 & 3)
Step 4 - Replace your food and large decor items as you had them planned in Step 2. (fig 4)
Step 5 - This already looks pretty good. The up and down flow is pleasing to the eye. But, let's add some accenting fabric and a few more smaller decor items in those crevice "opportunities". (fig 5)
Step 6 - WOW! That made a huge difference. I added 3 complementary fabrics: the tropical print, the orange chiffon and the green chiffon. I put a white fish net over the orange chiffon and a couple of silk fern bushes, a slik palm leaf and flower heads around the table and a silk flower lei around the base of my whimsical palm tree. . I think it made the tropical theme really come to life. Let's see what it looks like when I add the rest of the menu items... (fig 6)
And there you have it! Pretty simple! Below are some close up shots and some with candle light.
Keep in mind a buffetscape can be made for any theme! Just substitute Halloween, Christmas, Valentines, Easter, Thanksgiving, 4th of July or any other decor for the tropical decor here and off you go. Be a hostess/host that people admire. Do more than just place your food on a table. Make it fun and part of your decor!
Enjoy! If you want to comment, please click this link to my blog. Thanks!
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