Creating a candy buffet table or bar is an exciting part of planning for weddings, quince parties, sweet 16 birthdays and baby showers. Beyond selecting your favorite sweets, there is a special art to designing a memorable candy bar. No worries, the following information with help you get started with a few tricks, tips, and techniques to create the perfect candy buffet table.
1. Selecting Candy Buffet Theme and Color
When it comes to quinceaneras and weddings, the candy buffet is going to match the overall color theme. If you are still selecting colors, stick to around two or three colors that complement each other while presenting guests with a variety of candies in each color group. Varying candy color shades is fine and can really be quite visually appealing. Unless you are going for a rainbow or candy shop theme, too many colors can distract from the display. Try to limit color choices or keep them in the same color family.
2. Purchasing Different Candy Types
To create that stunning and visually appealing candy buffet, choose between eight to ten unique types of candy. Since the majority of the guests have their own candy preferences, be sure to offer a large variety of choices. Include hard candies, sours, gummies, jelly beans, mints, taffies, candy covered nuts/fruits, and chocolates. If the guest list is made up of mostly adults, consider more chocolates and nostalgic candies. If the event is focused on children, go for more sour, colorful, and gummy candies. You can also add cake pops, cupcakes, cookies, dipped pretzels, mini donuts, and colored popcorn to round out the selection.
One of the best ways to order just the right amount of candy for your event is to plan on approximately eight ounces of candy for each guest. If you are going to have 50 guests in attendance, make sure to have at least 400 ounces or 25 pounds of candy available. Of course some guests will eat more, some will eat less, so this average number takes both into account. Designer sweets and individually wrapped candy bars should be available for at least one per guest regardless of the weight.
4. Candy Display Containers
Just about anything can be used as a holder for the candy at your event. Glass jars, baskets, metal trays, cake stands, colorful bowls, and even mason jars work perfectly as candy holders. Holders of various colors and sizes will add even more visual appeal to the overall candy bar, so try to go for an assortment of shapes and sizes with the containers. Be sure to consider all candy comes in different sizes and shapes, so five pounds of marshmallows take up more space than five pounds of M&Ms.
5. Decorating and Arranging Your Candy Table
Just like flower arrangements or beautiful landscaping, present the candy table with a variety of different height levels to create an aesthetically pleasing display. Set up the location in three areas, the back area for taller containers, the middle area for the centerpiece of the candy table and bulk candy in clear jars, then the front area for smaller containers or individually portioned candies. Since each jar or container will be different sizes, use their heights to create the level effect. You can also add risers under or above the table cloth to provide height to shorter items.
6. Remembering Candy Scoops
The last thing you want is people reaching into the candy holders with their fingers to gather their favorites. Purchase scoops or tongs for each serving dish you expect and then add a few more – they tend to to wander away from the table on their own. Without scoops, you are just asking for trouble, so be sure there are plenty on hand for the different candies at the bar. Options include clear acrylic scoops, metal scoops, spoons and tongs. Decorate with ribbon or rhinestones for added bling and style.
7. Candy Cost Saving Tips
One of the best ways to save money is by planning ahead. Start grabbing jars or glass containers well in advance of your event. Shop at yard sales, thrift shops, or closeout sales. Many people buy too many and then sell them at garage sales for pennies on the dollar, there are deals out there in your town right now. See if the venue hosting your event can make jars available to you as well. The less you spend on jars, the more you can spend on colorful candies. If possible, buy the candy in bulk because larger quantities equal less costs. Check the candy supplier to see if they have coupon promo codes or possibly free shipping deals.
8. Candy Table Doing Double Duty as Favors
The party favor can be yet another costly expenditure at your event, but luckily your candy buffet can actually serve as a unique favor for guests too. Chinese style take-out boxes, organza bags, cellophane bags, or custom printed paper bags make the perfect carryall for those candies to go home with guests. The possibilities for these type of party favors are limitless; so let your imagination run wild.
9. Creating That Special Touch
When your guests enter the room of the party, the candy buffet really needs to create that WOW FACTOR! Colorful candy in clear glass jars is not enough, you need to present guests with an explosion of colors that dazzle the eyes and gets those taste buds watering. The tablecloth and the backdrop should be as unique and colorful as the buffet, so try to make the entire location stunning. Special touches like flowers, candy tags, colorful balloons, ribbons, and bows will have a long-lasting impact on guests. Printables, signs, and pictures can also help to showcase the guest of honor on this special day.
10. Time for That Trial Run
Do not wait until the day of the event to set up the candy buffet in the hopes of creating a visually stunning display. Take some time well before that event date approaches to have a trial run right in your own home. Clear off that kitchen or dining room table and lay out the tablecloth, jars, containers, baskets, and trays in the positions they will be on the day of the event. Not only will you instantly realize if you have enough candy, you can make changes until you get it perfect. Once you have moved and adjusted everything to the exact position you want, take a picture and use it as a detailed road map for the day of the event so everything sets up perfectly.
Looking for more inspiration? Check out our Candy Buffet Table Ideas Board and on Pinterest!