Serve up style with new trays

Daily Freeman (Kingston, NY) - - LIFE - By Kim Cook

The hol­i­days are the perfect chance to show off spe­cial serve­ware and update your kitchen with a cool new plat­ter or tray.

Lorna Aragon, home editor at Martha Ste­wart Liv­ing, has some sug­ges­tions:

“To serve dips in a stylish and se­cure way, use re­mov­able self-ad­he­sive Vel­cro dots to at­tach a bowl to the mid­dle of a plat­ter; then sur­round it with chips or cru­dites,” she says. “It won’t slip when you’re pass­ing it around, and it’s a great way to use your fa­vorite pieces to­gether.”

Aragon also sug­gests us­ing pretty trays to or­ga­nize your bar: “On top of a side ta­ble or buf­fet, put your liquor bot­tles on one and glasses on an­other. This cre­ates vis­ual in­ter­est and also makes clean­ing easy.”

Lorna’s go-to trays are the lac­quer ones from West Elm. (www.west­elm. com)

“They make them in dif­fer­ent col­ors ev­ery year, they come in dif­fer­ent shapes, and they’re a great ba­sic,” she says.

For artis­tic types, head to the Mu­seum of Modern Art’s on­line shop, where there’s a col­lec­tion of trays printed with mo­tifs from the ar­chives of Amer­i­can de­signer Alexan­der Gi­rard. Paola Navone’s Fish & Fish dish is in­spired by green, De­pres­sion-era glass. And tra­di­tional ori­en­tal lac­quer­ware gets a con­tem­po­rary update with fresh, min­i­mal­ist hues and a mix of glossy and matte fin­ishes. The bowls could hold snack crack­ers or uten­sils. (https://store.

At Aerin, an Art De­coin­spired, curvy, pol­ished, brass bowl sits on pert lit­tle feet. The lux­ury brand also has an el­e­gant, oval, sha­green cock­tail tray in choco­late or cream, trimmed with brass. (

From Wa­ter­works, the Canyon Drive col­lec­tion of black wal­nut and ebonized oak pedestals are trimmed with a sleek sliver of brass. Char­coal-hued resin is hand-poured to craft the Mar­lowe tray; a swath of gold around the rim makes it a dash­ing bar ac­ces­sory. (www.wa­ter­

Homegoods’ so­phis­ti­cated, white, porce­lain tray with an off-cen­ter group of gold trees would be an el­e­gant spot for cook­ies or ap­pe­tiz­ers. An­other sleek white cof­fee ser­vice set has a gold mar­bled de­sign. (www.

Give serve­ware a dif­fer­ent pur­pose, and you’ve got a real con­ver­sa­tion piece. Kate Spade New York’s aca­cia-wood cut­ting boards with a trim of blue or green, for ex­am­ple, could dis­play col­or­ful fruits. Or put a group of can­dles or a tan­gle of fairy lights on a round serv­ing tray with a bold graphic am­per­sand for a con­tem­po­rary cen­ter­piece. An ob­long plat­ter with a win­some vil­lage scene sketched on it could be the art piece an­chor of a man­tel dis­play. (www. kates­ ;­

Mag­no­lia Mar­ket’s nearly 4-foot-long pad­dle­shaped bread board could hold char­cu­terie, desserts or shot glasses. (https:// shop.mag­no­lia­mar­ket. com)

Fi­nally, for crafty en­ter­tain­ers, con­sider this idea from the folks at Martha Ste­wart: Get an of­f­cut or have a lum­ber­yard saw a slab for you, sand it smooth, and treat it with a food-safe pro­tec­tor like co­conut oil, beeswax or min­eral oil. Add vo­tive can­dles, fresh herbs and your fa­vorite foods. (www.marthastew­


This un­dated photo pro­vided by the MoMA De­sign Store shows the large Di­a­monds tray, mod­eled from Amer­i­can de­sign icon Alexan­der Gi­rard’s ar­chives. The tray from is a great way to serve and dis­play food and drinks cre­atively.


This un­dated photo pro­vided by Homegoods shows a sleek, white porce­lain plat­ter fea­tur­ing an el­e­gant group of gold trees to dress it up.

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