A Spanish tapas party! What a unique way to infuse your bridal shower celebration with an exotic, yet intimate feel. Capturing the right look is simpler than you’d expect. Just create the focus around a romantic, candlelit table for your closest friends and family. Set the mood with a palette of bold, rich colors. Then, bring in tasteful table decorations that also incorporate stylish guest keepsakes. Amidst all these, add unexpected elements for a fresh and creative take on a traditional tapas party.
See our ideas below for a truly memorable celebration!
Create a Luxurious Table Display With Surprising Touches
Start with a table display that transports your guests to an evening in sultry Spain…with creative twists! Use a tablecloth of rich gold trimmed with deep red—echoing the warmth of a dancing fire, or the exciting costumes of Flamenco dancers. Contrast this opulent backdrop with natural elements in neutral tones and varied textures. Then bring in a melange of additional colors in the table accents, such as burnt orange, fuchsia, olive green, and even yellow and blue—with touches of ivory and white to set them off.
Amidst this rich setting, lay out quaint tapas plates reminiscent of a charming kitchen in Old Spain. The bright, folksy colors and one-of-a-kind handpainted designs of these plates bring an unexpected intimacy to an otherwise luxurious table display. And setting them atop chic oval dinner plates in pure white is yet another surprising blend of modern and traditional. Don’t be afraid to experiment!
Craft a Centerpiece With A Fresh Twist
In keeping with the tapas party theme, see what we used to hold a truly fabulous, no-flowers centerpiece. A paella pan! We simply took vari-colored leaves in green, orange, and gold tones and arranged them loosely in the pan—with the party favors for guests hidden amidst them like lovely “blooms.” Hint: Instead of a pan, you can also use a tray, box, or large serving bowl. And for the leaves, you may simply snip some bunches from your own garden.
Add candlelight and scatter fresh rose petals around the centerpiece for that additional air of romance. If you’d still prefer to have flowers, some budget-friendly blooms that would work well include carnations in red and yellow gold. And for a touch of “bling” on the table, you can rest the candles on mirrored coasters.
Wow Guests With Unexpected Elements
Bring an element of surprise to the table and have guests exclaiming over your decorating skills! Fortunately, this “wow” factor can be pulled off in budget-friendly ways in order to achieve a stylish yet easy look, as we’ve done here:
- Decorate each chair with a bright red cabbage rose—reminiscent of a señorita’s hair accessory. Hint: These faux roses are easily found in craft stores.
- Find a pretty tablecloth with a brilliant gold and red trimming. Hint: You can also substitute yellow for gold or use different colors of table linens overlaid on top of each other.
- Use shell trays to serve up appetizers to guests, which add a unique style to the natural décor accents of the table.
- Set out an eye-catching accent piece, like this towering cone-shaped cover in bright red and gold for displaying some Spanish sherry, or Spanish wine in a fancy-shaped decanter or in a bottle with a distinctive label.
- Craft a table number decorated with beans and seeds—a sure conversation piece, with an eco-friendly flair as well!
- Use colorful Spanish salad plates set atop crisp white dinner plates. Adding these ceramic plates instantly adds a decorative touch to the table.
Present “Heart Warming” Favors
A fitting end to this tapas party? Savory Spanish cookies and confections made right at home, of course! Excellent choices would be peanut drop cookies, “powder cookies” (polvorones) made with almonds, cashews, or cinnamon, Spanish shortbread (mantecados), or almond nougat (turrónes). Package these sweet delights in colorful fabric-wrapped woven boxes in the shape of hearts—for truly “heart-warming” guest favors! And remember our paella-pan centerpiece? It’s the perfect showcase for these favors, with their different wrap colors in burnt orange, red, fuchsia, and olive perfectly complementing the table’s rich palette.