Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Sugar Rush: Candy Table Tips From A Pro (Part One)

Who doesn’t love walking into a wedding reception and seeing a beautiful table just loaded with delicious treats? I know I certainly do, and that’s why I’ve invited the talented Frances from Lollipops & Paper to share advice and inspiration about this fun and popular trend. Just in time for Halloween, let the cravings begin!

You’ve designed beautiful candy tables for events ranging from kids’ birthday parties to weddings. What’s your experience been like, and how do you feel a candy table can enhance an event?

I started out making just my customized chocolate candies and lollipops, but eventually, I was making several types of candy for parties. Then, candy tables came into fashion, where you actually designed a setup instead of just handing out sweets or throwing candy into a pinata. I loved the idea and gave it a try the first chance I could.

The great thing about candy tables is that guests of all ages can find something they like. You can include sour candy, chocolate, and even sugar-free choices so that there's something for everyone. We often focus so much on what kids like that we forget adults are there, too! Candy tables are especially great for weddings, because they give guests something sweet to munch on while taking a break from dancing or to enjoy again after the reception.

What are the most important things to keep in mind when deciding just what types of candy to use and what the setup should look like?

I think a good candy table has a wide variety of selections. Try to include something for every taste palate. Start with one choice of chocolate, hard candy, sour candy, and even something salty. And don't forget about your guests who are watching their sugar intake. Be sure to include sugar-free candy, as well.

Also remember that a candy table doesn't have to be expensive. In fact, I think it saves money, because there is less waste. With a candy table, guests choose only the candy they like, leaving behind the rest for someone else. How many times have we gotten candy in a favor box only to throw it away because it isn't the candy we like?

When creating the setup, keep in mind that a well-designed table is simple and balanced. For most tables, plain clear vases and simple white platters work best. When laying out the table, it's best to start from the center and move outward. Putting the cake, a flower arrangement, or even a large jar of candy in the center will draw the eye. Accents like a coordinating tablecloth and runner can help pull the look together. Details like ribbons and labels for the jars and platters are also a nice touch.

Many venues offer a candy buffet as a wedding package add-on, but is this also a project the bride and groom can take on as a DIY, maybe with the help of a relative or friend?

If a candy table is something you want to do yourself, there are a few things to consider. First, if you are buying all the platters and jars, you have to factor that into the cost. Of course, you can use the jars again after the wedding, but some types of jars can cost upwards of $10 each, so it might not be as cost-effective as having your reception site provide these items.

Second, it takes time to set up a table. If this is going to be a DIY project for a friend or relative, make sure that person can set up early and still make it to the ceremony. And just like with any other aspect of wedding planning, preparing ahead of time is key. Adding personalized labels or bows can be done months ahead of time, and if you can buy your candy in advance, you can take advantage of sales or special wrapper colors, such as red during the Christmas and Valentine's seasons, or pastels during the Easter season. Candy is always on clearance during the few days after Halloween, so this is also a good time to stock up. And what if you don't like the preexisting candy design or wrapper? You can always cover it with paper or packaging to match your color scheme.

What do you think of the candy table trend, and what are some of your favorite treats?

(Photo Credits: Lollipops & Paper)


  1. LOVE this trend!! I like anything and everything!!! lol

  2. awww what a great idea. Who doesn't love treats!!! Thos chocolates with the hearts on them are adorable!