Busy Mom’s Guide: How to create a DIY candy buffet from scratch

how to create diy candy buffet from scratch

Candy buffets are becoming great hits at parties because it’s kawaii(!) and has yummy treats! It’s great to have one in your own parties too. The kids and those kids at heart will surely enjoy it.

With proper preparation and tutorials on hand, busy moms can make DIY candy buffet for any birthday parties. In this guide article, I will talk about the following:

  • How to plan DIY candy buffet
  • How to make DIY party decors
  • How to setup the candy buffet at the party venue
  • How much my own DIY candy buffet actually cost

Step-by-step guide on making DIY candy buffet

1. Know your purpose

Is it to save on cost? Is it to personally get the design you really wanted and imagined of? Is to have an enjoyable mom project? Is it to give your Lil One a birthday party centerpiece that is lovingly made from mommy’s bare hands?

Whatever your reason is, it would become your mantra and motivation in the long run. So make it a good one!

2. Set a budget


Set a budget for your DIY candy buffet
Set a budget for your DIY candy buffet

How much are you willing to shell out? Is your budget reasonable? Or would it be rather practical to get a professional stylist at a lower price?

It is very essential to have a set budget at the very beginning. Make this your central compass as you go shopping (or hoarding) for materials. The keyword is stick. As in stick to your budget.

3. Set a timeline

Set a timeline for your DIY candy buffet plan
Set a timeline for your DIY candy buffet plan

Aside from budget, this is another important factor to consider. Being a stay-at-home mom, i know from the very beginning that i can only plan and work on my DIY candy buffet when the Lil One is sleeping or napping. Having decided to do DIY all the way, i set at least a month for this new mom project of mine. And that’s excluding the time spent on gathering ideas and inspirations from Pinterest.

If you find yourself in a similar situation, set a realistic and relaxed timeline so that instead of being stressed out, you will find your DIY project as enjoyable and pleasant.

Having a fair and even out space of time, you can also set yourself at ease especially at the last minute when you don’t have a third-party supplier to ask for help, give instructions to, and demand from.

4.  Decide on the theme

Deciding on a theme at an early time will save you a few trips to the store, a lot of money since you already know what color/style/materials to buy, and a significant dose of sanity!

As you browse through Pinterest, you will see a massive flood of artistic, creative, cutie loveey doveey pieces of all cuteness you can think of. And just when you have (finally!) decided on a theme, you see another cutie loveey doveey piece of…. stop!

It is important to decide on a theme early on. And the keyword is again.. stick! Stick to your theme.

I know it’s hard because there’s a cuteness overload in Pinterest. Control mommy, control! If only you can choose everything, but hey why not? On a second thought, nah.

Make sure to consider the following:

  • Color scheme – examples: pink, gold, blue, rainbow, black and white, etc.
  • Central theme – examples for girls: princess, garden, butterflies, barbie, disney characters such as Sofia the first, Dory, etc.
    Example for boys: cars, animal safari, jungle, galaxy, disney characters such as Nemo, Woodie from Toy Story, etc.

5. Visualise, or better yet, sketch your desired outcome

Have you decided on your theme? Then it’s time to gather all your ideas and visualize them altogether. Or better yet, sketch! It doesnt have to be a grand drawing, just a simple blueprint on how all the pieces will come together. You could do it with pen and paper, or by using a software app.

Make sure to consider the following:

  • Number of tables
  • Dimensions of the table(s)
  • Length of the table cloth
  • Backdrop design and decorations
  • Size of the candy containers
  • Colors of the candies
  • Types of treats – examples: lollipop, wrapped candies, bubble gumballs, gummy bears, jelly beans, chocolates, chocolate fountain, marshmallows
  • Decorations – examples: paper rosettes, crepe flowers, paper flowers, tasel garlands,
  • Birthday pieces – examples: picture of the birthday celebrant, name initials, picture frames
My DIY candy buffet plan: Pardon my talentless sketching haha
My DIY candy buffet plan: Pardon my talentless sketching haha

6. Buy, buy, buy your supplies

Now that you have laid out your master plan, it is time to buy the building materials, candy containers, and candies.

As mentioned earlier, if you have decided on your theme early on, you could save yourself a few extra trips to the store. As busy moms pressed with time, you would want to be able to buy your necessary supplies with ease, less stress, and within budget.

If you live around Metro Manila, check out my article: Online shops that sell supplies for your DIY candy buffet.

7. Create the decorations

The moment of truth (and struggles, haha)! This is where the real work begins and it will eat most of your time. Make sure to schedule this as you dont want to panic not having finished enough decors a few days before the event.

Check out my articles about creating some simple flower decors:

  • How to create paper rosettes
  • How to create crepe flowers
  • How to create tasel garlands
Paper rosettes
Paper rosettes
Crepe paper flowers
Crepe paper flowers

8. Set up the candy buffet at the party venue

  • Prepare your setup materials

Prepare your setup materials the night before the event. This will reduce stress as you tackle on other matters on the very day of the event, honestly speaking. Wink.

  • Arrive at the venue early

Make sure to arrive at the venue at least 3 to 4 hours before the party starts. Or as long as you already have a list of action plan, 2 hours will be enough.

  • Get all the help you can get to save time

Also, get all the help you can get. During our actual setup, there were only three of us setting up the candy buffet at the start. As it progressed, other family members joined in as we became pressed on time. Our DIY candy buffet has become a family affair. Hehehe.

  • Divide the candy buffet table into 3 zones

In setting up the candies and jars/containers, keep in mind to divide the table into three horizontal zones: the rear, middle, and front.

+ Rear – Place here the tallest jars or containers. As for the candies, the easiest to pick must go here such as wrapped candies, big marshmallows, and so on.

+ Middle – Place here the medium-sized containers and some tall and bulky candies such as lollipops, candy sticks, wafer sticks, and so on.

+ Front – Place here small candies such as gummy bears, jelly beans, and other treats that are most easily picked.

Note: Whatever your design is, it is good to consider these three zone scheme is just a standard. You can always customise your design while making sure the jars/containers are arranged aesthetically, candies can easily be accessed, and the overall buffet is oozing with eye-candy awesomenesss. Wink.

The family affair aka DIY candy buffet setup
The family affair aka DIY candy buffet setup

9. Enjoy the party!

Seeing your month’s worth of planning and working, you will just want to tap yourself at the back, and exhale with relief that it was accomplished and you pulled it off! Hahaha.

While there may be some parts of your DIY candy buffet plan that may not push through such as wanting a few more candies or a little bit more backdrop design, don’t fret about it. Besides, there’s no such thing as “perfect plans=perfect execution”. It is good to remember to be just versatile and creative with whatever resources you have.

DIY candy buffet, pink and gold theme
DIY candy buffet, pink and gold theme
Another angle of the DIY candy buffet
Another angle of the DIY candy buffet
Graphic art of bible quotes on wooden easel stand
Graphic arts of bible quotes on wooden easel stand
The candies!
The candies!
Put your candies here
Put your candies here
Cupcakes ordered from Bethany's Cakes
Cupcakes ordered from Bethany’s Cakes
Cupcakes as giveaways to our guests
Cupcakes as giveaways to our guests
Kids (and kids at heart) enjoying the treats
Kids (and kids at heart) enjoying the treats

Conclusions: summary, actual cost, and realisations

In a nutshell, here are the steps to making your DIY candy buffet:

  1. Know your purpose
  2. Set a budget
  3. Set a timeline
  4. Decide on a theme
  5. Visualize or sketch your desired outcome
  6. Buy, buy, buy
  7. Create the decorations
  8. Set up the candy buffet at the party venue
  9. Enjoy!

Actual cost (Phillippine peso currency)

And the most interesting question i assume would be, ‘How much was the actual cost?’

For a breakdown, here it goes:

  • Raw materials for decorations – P700
  • Printing of baby’s monthly milestone pictures and bible quotes at Fujifilm – 18 pcs of 5R = P120
  • Printing of baby’s blowup picture 8R = P90
  • 6 white and pink containers at Daiso = S$10 roughly P330 (bought by hubby in Singapore)
  • Pink tablecloth at Daiso = S$6
  • 11 pcs of Block Letters at 5 inches high = P550 (supplied by  Letra atbp)
  • 1 pcs of Block Number 3 feet high = P300
  • Pink candies package from Joshua Gummies = P1500 + P300 delivery charge
  • Total = P4072

Items we got for free or no additional charge:

  • Cake = included in the catering package
  • Renting of Cupcake stand = supposed to be P500

Items available at home:

  • 2 wooden miniatures of easel artist stand
  • 1 Ikea white picture frame
  • 2 tall glass jars

Note: I didn’t include the cupcakes in the candy buffet budget since they were considered as giveaways. But in case you’re wondering, it costs as follows:

  • 30 pcs Cupcakes, assorted flavors, customized princess crown fondant topper (supplied by Bethany’s) = P2100

My Realisations

Although time-consuming and slightly stressful for busy moms, I’d be glad to do it again so I can give my baby a party made by mommy’s bare hands. And I enjoyed planning it, as well as seeing it all happened. I foresee myself making more DIY candy buffets in the future, so my experience now will surely come in handy.

So good luck on making your own DIY candy buffet, mommies. And let the kids and those kids at heart enjoy the treats during the party. Enjoy!

Make sure to PIN my infographic below for your reference!

how to create diy candy buffet from scratch




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6 thoughts on “Busy Mom’s Guide: How to create a DIY candy buffet from scratch

  1. Fabulous candy buffet! Moms will love this very detailed article! The Lil One will definitely thank you for that years from now! 🙂

  2. What a beautiful party and candy buffet! These are great tips to create a diy candy buffet for any occasion, not just a child’s birthday. I’ve seen such gorgeous displays and often wondered how they put it together. Thanks for sharing the details! Pinned.

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