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Buffet Set Up Using Tiered Stands

Updated on March 28, 2013

Add Tiered Stands to Your Buffet Set Up

One of my favorite buffet ideas is using tiered stands to jazz up your buffet table. It's quick, easy and beautiful. Decorating a buffet is not a new concept but it is one more and more people are embracing for all types of parties and events. A buffet set up or "buffetscape" is very easy to do and will add to the overall décor of your event.

The buffet layout takes a little planning but not much more than you would normally plan for a buffet get together. Knowing your menu and what dishes they will be served in is half the battle. Adding décor or dressing it up is the final step. There are many types of buffets: Dessert, station, themed, banquet table (rectangle) and round table buffets come to mind.

The main thing to remember when wanting to create a memorable buffet -- Utilize Vertical Space. The eye is attracted to differing heights -- use this to your advantage. One great way is by using Tiered Buffet displays for platters, bowls or baskets. So on with the buffet ideas!

Photo Credit to Tracy Hunter at Flickr

5 Tiered Stand for a Buffet

This stand is so versatile and holds lots of food! Making good use of your vertical space, you can offer your guests lots of choices with this stand. Decorate the area at the base of the stand with greenery, flowers, themed items or led candles. You will use this over and over again!

3 Tiered Server -- Beautiful

Whether you serve appetizers or desserts, they will look that much more scrumptious served on this 3 tiered stand. The glass/crystal platters have a lip that will keep the food safely on the platter. The stair-step design is a great look for your buffet table.

Classic Tiered Stand

This classic design never goes out of style and can be used year around as well as on your buffet table. Fill it with homemade candy, pigs in a blanket or mini muffins. Anyway you look at it, your food will look great on a classic tiered stand!

Tablescape -

The end result of a "dressed" table. Items such as linens, dishes, glassware, decorative elements, napkins, centerpieces, etc... put together in an attractive manner to create a Tablescape.

Photo Credit to avlxyz at Flickr

Poke a silk flowering or greenery bush under your tiered display rack to give soften the hard lines.

Place dinner plates on a tiered rack instead of just stacking them.

Add flowers, greenery, bows or ribbon to the handle of the tiered display. Have them cascade down the rack following the frame.

Beautiful Dropped Crystal 3 Tiered Stands

Product Features:

  • Set of three - large is 11" diameter and 10.75" tall, 9.5" diameter and 8.5" tall, 8" diameter and 5.75" tall
  • White scroll metal frames
  • Clear glass inserts
  • Drop dangle accents
  • Beautiful addition to any table - casual or elegant

Buffetscape -

The end result of a "dressed" buffet table. Elements used to create the buffetscape can include just about anything: centerpiece, linens, risers, tiered stands, platters, dishes, and decorative elements.

Set of 3 Black Jeweled Cake Stands - Use Together for the Tiered Stand Effect

Product Features:

  • Fun and elegant set of three cake stands are decorated in a chandelier look with crystals and jewels
  • Glass and Iron
  • Largest stand is 16-Inch tall
  • Square top is 9-Inch by 9-Inch
  • These eye-catching stands will make any table look elegant

If a platter, bowl or even a tiered stand is not tall enough for your design, use a riser. A riser can be made of any sturdy item such as a pot, hat box, glass bowl turned upside down, using wine glasses as a base, books, etc...

Cover the riser with a fabric that coordinates with your design, color scheme or theme.

Just ensure it is sturdy and won't fall over if one of your guests knocks against the table.


Tiered stands can be used for more than just a buffet. Make a centerpiece out of them!

* During the Holidays, place small fir branches on each tier and then cover with assorted sized ornaments in a color scheme and use as a centerpiece.

* Place decorative balls, potpourri, colored glass stones, votive candles or a combination thereof on the tiers for a different look.

* Holidays offer lots of decorating ideas for these stands. For instance, during Easter, lean small bean bag chicks, ducks and eggs against the middle post for a cute centerpiece. At Halloween use webbing, small spiders, skulls, gravestones, etc...

Gorgeous White 12 Tiered Cupcake Stand

Use this stand as the centerpiece of your dessert table. It's commanding presence of 20" tall, makes it the perfect choice for a centerpiece. Use it for cookies, brownie slices or individual cheesecakes too. Use your imagination!

3 Tiered Stand with Style

The sculpted bowls are gorgeous on this 3 tiered stand. Hold fruit salad, dips, or candy in style!

Set of 3 Cake Plate Stacked

This set of 3 cake plates can be stacked to create a tiered stand. The red color is perfect for so many holidays -- Christmas, Valentine's Day, Independence Day, and more. Use them staked or separate to give some vertical height to your buffet table. Available in ivory, teal and red.

Using a round table works well when hosting a "stations" buffet. You get to utilize the entire circumference of the table and use the center to showcase a centerpiece or food display. They need to be set out away from the wall far enough for people to easily get around the entire table.

Make one table (station) for salads, one for desserts, one for meat or vegetarian main dishes, and one for your side dishes. If you are having a theme, choose a centerpiece that will reflect that theme and cover the tables in complementary colors.

Don't forget to use fabrics to cover your risers and add to the design. Again, chose complementary colors or patterns to the main linens you use. They act as accents that can pack a punch on your buffet table. Notice how the red and white gingham pops from the black tablecloth in the background in the photo on the right.

Image: Tracy Hunter under license CC by 2.0

Don't Forget to make the Drinks Look Good!

Curved Glass Drink Dispenser w/ Stand
Curved Glass Drink Dispenser w/ Stand

This glass beverage dispenser holds a generous 1.2 gallons

Glass drink dispenser includes wrought iron stand

Measures 19" tall including stand

6.25” from table to spout to allow for most beverage glasses


Tiered Stands are an investment. You will use them over and over throught the years. For holidays, home get-togethers, weddings, reunions, rehearsal dinners, and more. Loan them out to family and friends and teach them how to jazz up their buffet tables!

Buffet Ideas

Buffet Set Up

I hope some of these buffet ideas and suggestions has you designing your own beautiful buffet set up!

Do you have any Buffet Ideas to share? - Everyone is invited to leave me a note!

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    • SandyMertens profile image

      Sandy Mertens 5 years ago from Frozen Tundra

      Food just seem to stand out with tree stands. Very nice.

    • profile image

      dellgirl 5 years ago

      Love this beautiful lens! I'm pinning this goodie on Pinterest.

    • BuckHawkcenter profile image

      BuckHawkcenter 5 years ago

      Oh, wow, what great ideas for a wonderful dining experience. Buffets are my favorite way to serve at events and parties. And now I have even more ideas for decorating.

    • sushilkin lm profile image

      sushilkin lm 6 years ago

      love to see Tiered Basket & Pink Cake Pedestals.

    • TonyPayne profile image

      Tony Payne 6 years ago from Southampton, UK

      Tiered stands certainly do help to make room for more items on a buffet table, as well as to make the buffet look more attractive. You certainly know your dining and I can only imagine how wonderful your dinners are. Nicely done, blessed.

    • profile image

      diyconservatoriesdream 6 years ago

      this is really a fun and interesting lens! keep it up!


      get the perfect DIY conservatory to improve the look and feel of your home!

    • pixelposy profile image

      pixelposy 6 years ago

      I have a feeling I'm going to start collecting serving wear now. :)

    • DecoratingEvents profile image

      DecoratingEvents 7 years ago

      @Sylvestermouse: So very true! I love using tiered servers too. The best advantage is "going up" with your display and taking up less room on the buffet!

    • Sylvestermouse profile image

      Cynthia Sylvestermouse 7 years ago from United States

      These are beautiful tier servers! I can assure you I need the tiered servers when we set out the holiday meals. Not only are they elegant, but they provide a wonderful way to separate foods that are similar, but different. Awesome!

    • Mayapearl profile image

      Mayapearl 7 years ago

      There are some great ideas on this lens, thank you.

    • DecoratingEvents profile image

      DecoratingEvents 7 years ago

      @anonymous: Thanks! Glad to help!

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      Thanks, I will be incorporating these ideas into my Candy Buffet services. Love the suggestions and they are so easy to incorporate.

    • DecoratingEvents profile image

      DecoratingEvents 7 years ago

      @ajgodinho: Thanks AJ! Much appreciated!!!

    • ajgodinho profile image

      Anthony Godinho 7 years ago from Ontario, Canada

      Very well done and presented. I liked the tiered idea. **Blessed by a Squid-Angel**

    • dustytoes profile image

      dustytoes 7 years ago

      Wonderful ideas for anyone planning to do their own special event. I love the variety of tiered plates and dishes that you have shown. I will link this to my wedding lenses.

    • Lironah LM profile image

      Lironah 7 years ago

      Ooh, these are cool. I'd love to see bigger pictures of full ones, though.