Like every other female, I spend a decent amount of time browsing Pinterest for party ideas. A lot of times, the ideas fall into two categories: cheesy, as in the case of food cut in goofy shapes for a holiday (you know, like a Christmas tree shaped vegetable platters or green dyed cupcake), or completely unrealistic. Once, I saw tiny individual lunch bags, cut with pinking shears and stamped with a little design, used to serve a tiny handful of potato chips. Was it adorable? Of course. But how many of us out there are going to go through that much effort for potato chips?
Or take the appetizers served on individual spoons idea- what host has 30+ little spoons to dish out a deviled egg on? And then as a guest, what do you do with your spoon when you're done eating?
So today I thought I'd share some of my favorite realistic inspiration- things that are executable by the average hostess, and beneficial for the guests.
My favorite is this idea for a summer clambake- three big buckets make for easy cleanup, and give a perfect rustic, summer look to your party. The containers really suit the theme.
I liked this photo of a make your own sandwich bar, probably because I do a lot of "make your own" parties, but also because it seems like a party a real person might throw. Things on Pinterest are usually so perfect they make you feel bad about yourself! But this is attractive, yet still easily accomplishable
I like how all of the ingredients are grouped, organized, and neatly presented, especially the rolls in the lined basket. The only thing I'd change would be to decant the feta and mustard into bowls or squeeze bottles- I hate serving anything in it's original grocery store packaging.
I really love this cheeseboard. It's easy to put together- three large wedges of cheese, a bunch of grapes, a spilled handful of almonds. Plus it's adaptable- swap out the marble board for slate, or a wooden cutting board, or whatever you have. If you forget to buy flowers, fill a drinking glass with tall grissini and there's your height element. Just make sure you remember cheese knives and make the first cut- no guest ever wants to be the first to cut into something!
Another idea to change up your buffet display is to use height, instead of reaching for a big, flat platter. Using a taller serving piece in an unconventional way, like this tiered tray used for a s'mores bar, adds a lot of visual interest. This idea could easily be adapted for various breads for a crostini bar, or as another way to serve fruit.
Finally, I think one of the best ways to up your presentation game is to have drinks presented nicely. The easiest way to do that is to fill a glass pitcher, and add sliced fruit or herbs to it- and it's much easier and faster than Pinterest's other idea, dipping individual glass rims in colored sugar.
What are your favorite tricks for presentation?