Tag Archives: food ideas

Jul 15, 2018


photo by Liz Banfield

 One of the most popular topics that remains at my speaking engagements or questions we receive are how to look at food serving and displays in new and different ways. So, we’re sharing some ways we have styled food or incorporated it into the decor… Like above- for a wedding with stations and over 400 guests, we had to make the food accessible and interesting. We took a garden fountain from a hardware store, sealed and treated it with food safe materials, and then turned it into a cocktail shrimp focal point.

234.P645Z.360.2016.27 © Liz Banfield med_res

photo by Liz Banfield

We find cocktail hour and passed hors d’eouvres an easy place to get creative. Of course, the trays you use can be customized and you’ve seen us talk about printing paper liners to fit your look.. but ask your caterer about different ways to present the food. Here, mini tacos are served in lime wedges that can also be used to squeeze atop the taco for a bit of extra flavor.


photo by Corbin Gurkin

I feel like a big part of my job is to make sure that guests have a fun and and seamless experience. So, again, for receptions where the guests aren’t served a plated dinner, finding ways to serve the food is important. Here, shot glasses are filled with hummus and veggies are placed in them for a quick pick up option.

photo by Liz Banfield

photos by Nickie Stone and Corbin Gurkin 

photos by Liz Banfield

Another popular item we are playing with are cheese or antipasta displays during cocktail hours, or even as late night food around the dance floor area.  We have been using different pieces of furniture to create a display, which works well for a self serve function. We have also built tall lucite tables with butcher block tops for some cocktail hour antipasta displays, I love how guests can access them from all angles.  And we have a marble topped push cart that we use often for serving, so doing a classic glamorous cheesecart after dinner is one of my favorite things to do!

photo by Liz Banfield

Late night food is still a big request we are seeing. If you are wanting to serve some of the good old standards, you can do it in a new and refreshing way… here, French Fries make their way around the dance floor in paper popcorn boxes, which also helps cut down on the greasy finger effect.

photo by Gayle Brooker

Even something like chicken wings are elevated and elegant served individually in dishes.


photo by Corbin Gurkin

Sometimes food can make an impact just being used in an unexpected way… For a bride whose father grew watermelons- we had our ice sculptor put slices in ice for a pop of color on a seafood display.

photo by Liz Banfield

This couple chose pies over a traditional wedding cake.. Individual pies in an array of flavors were displayed on tiered stands, with printed flavor flags!

photo by Virgil Bunoa

Our bride wanted to have a champagne station with different mixers and embellishments… A rented bakers rack made a pretty and unexpected buffet.. If guests have to serve themselves, than better make it thoughtful, right?

7.15.18   |   TARA GUÉRARD
Entertaining, Event Design, Event Planning, Food and Drink, Uncategorized, Weddings | Comments >>
Jul 15, 2018

Photos by Lucy Cuneo 

You’ve got a house full of family (or friends) and have to focus on the big meal later in the day… Well, here are a few ideas that hopefully you can use to serve a fun and easy breakfast and maintain your status as the hostess with the mostest. First of all, the big  Thanksgiving meal coming up tends to be more formal, so feel free to let the a.m be more casual, even self serve.  Set it and forget it.  If weather in your area permits, this could even be outside or on a porch allowing for the dining area to stay prepped for later.

Here, I went with a Bloody Mary and Biscuit theme. So, sett out your favorite mixers and garnishes and let guests build their own bloody marys. Other snacky type items, fruit, veggies, (I even like Bacon in my bloodys) here can also double as a buffet- make your drink and plate in one place.  This can certainly be a light meal in anticipation of stuffing face later.

A great item that we like to have in the freezer to pull out are biscuits, and some of our favorite are Callie’s Charleston Biscuits… You can see more of us making biscuits in the kitchen with Carey Morrie here. A great item to include on the buffet, and works with everything.

Happy Thanksgiving to all!

7.15.18   |   TARA GUÉRARD
Charleston, Entertaining, Food and Drink, Uncategorized | Comments >>
Jul 15, 2018

Seafood Collage

It’s Tuesday “tip” day so today, we’re going to share some ideas on how to serve more fun party food or typically casual items in more elegant or fun ways. Like above, instead of shrimp cocktail where guests pick up shrimp out of a large pile and dip into cocktail sauce, here, the shrimp is individually served on a clam shell ontop of a dollop of cocktail sauce.

For another seafood ice station, the bride’s family grows watermelon, so we froze slices of watermelon into ice blocks to give an element of design.   Oysters are served on the halfshell with miniature tabasco so guests could give a little squirt and eat.

Biscuit Collage

Biscuits are big big big in the South, and with guests coming from all over the world we have to make sure we present them in a manner that all would approve (and even try for the first time!) So, chicken biscuits typically reserved for a drive through instantly become a  hit served on silver at a black tie wedding! BBQ can be messy, but when already assembled onto biscuits and served late night – guests will be following the servers around to get one!

Ice Cream Collage

Ice cream is a constantly requested late night sweet treat at our weddings. So, we’ve tried to make it fun, but having many flavor selections in a custom ice station and guests can request what they want- kind of a like a real scoop shop.  Miniature cones or ice cream sandwiches served to guests on the dance floor offers a way to cool off and curb a sweet tooth!

Fries Collage

The old standbys- hamburgers and hot dogs and fries are still popular hits when served up in creative ways.

cheese plate

Another fun late night snack that is somewhat unexpected is a cheese cart. We wheel out a variety of cheeses, crackers, and spreads and serve up custom little snacks to guests.

Carnival Collage

And, novelty items typically reserved for kids’ parties are always a hit with grownups too. S’mores made easy, donuts served up on cocktail plates, or a pretzel station dressed up can all offer fun bites that still work with black tie!

7.15.18   |   TARA GUÉRARD
Entertaining, Event Design, Event Planning, Food and Drink, Parties, Uncategorized, Weddings | Comments >>