Dessert Tables Part 2 is all about planning the presentation, just as soon as you have decided on your selections.

Whoever said, “We first eat with our eyes”, must have hosted only a few dessert buffets in their lifetime.

No matter how delectable your offerings are or how expertly they are decorated, desserts placed haphazardly on a table are not appealing. Flow, symmetry, and rhythm invite your guests to what their eyes tell them will be a good time.

Elevating one or more desserts help to create this.

Think of a beautiful cake on a stand in the center of the table beckoning you in. On either side slightly lower in height are mini towers of cookies or cupcakes. Down front from the cake guests have the options of hand pies or cake truffles.

Drinks are displayed at either end along with favors or jars of candy. Your eyes should naturally take in the table and should comfortably progress from left to right or top to bottom.

When training my fitness students I advise them to train symmetrically. What they do on the right side of their bodies they should do on the left, same for the front and back. This is to keep everything in balance and to keep one body part from overtaking the rest.


For displays don’t get locked into the idea of having to use an actual footed stand. They are so nice to have but not the only way to elevate your sweets. Let these ideas spark a few more for you:

  • Books place under the table cloth
  • Books tied with ribbon or covered in wrapping paper
  • Boxes covered with fabric or wrapping paper
  • Overturned glasses or goblets
  • A small plate place on a candlestick
  • Platters on overturned bowls


Scrapbook paper is one of the most underused decorating accessories on the planet. They can add shine, texture and lots of fun color to any table. Try placing a sheet under your trays and platters. Placed down the center of the table they become a runner.

See how much fun you can have with this?


One more very important consideration is to label the food. Here again, keep it simple. In light of food intolerance to peanuts, milk and gluten you want to let your guests know what their choices are. The internet is loaded with free downloadable printables for food labeling. Some come fully decorated; others are plain and allow you to customize them. Simply place them next to the item or use note card holders to hold them.


The most important thing is to have fun with this. Don’t fret if your first cousin once removed spills her punch, or take to the fainting couch if you run out of brownies. If you’re relaxed and having fun chances are your guest will also.

Remember it’s just desserts!!!

One Response to Dessert Tables Part 2 | The Presentation

  1. Amy says:

    Really great ideas! I often serve a variety of desserts, and usually just put them all out on the table. I am pinning this for my next gathering!

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