Creative DIY Fun Wedding

Paris Wedding Wednesday : Bon-Bon Bar

One of the fun things I am creating for our wedding reception is a bon-bon bar, where the cake (from Sugarplum Cake shop) and other assorted treats and douceurs will be set out for guests to take as they please. The venue where we are having our reception will be taking care of all the food and catering, but I wanted to add something that fits a little more with my personality (don’t get me wrong, I’m all for the foie gras and fresh salmon!) But the decision making that went into the menu was menu was mostly a group effort so I thought it would be amusing to make a statement with a bon-bon bar where the American wedding cake sits temptingly! Truthfully, I left most of the menu decisions up to my future in-laws as they have very good taste in food. And quite frankly, I can’t really work the menu to our Circus wedding theme unless I expect 75 French people to feast on popcorn balls and cotton candy! I wouldn’t inflict that even on myself. Oooh the tummy ache.

BUT, the bon-bon bar, now I can go circus nuts on that!

Some of my ideas for the table are : Red licorice strips, cracker jacks caramel popcorn, hershey’s kisses, marshmallows, blue jelly beans, cookies and more, and OF COURSE some dragées for my mother-in-law, but they have to be turquoise colored! 🙂

I am thinking of putting the different sweets in selected jars and pasting a charming label on it, something like this : (Feel free to save this image and use it for your own bon-bon table or party…and send me pics if you do, I will add them to this post!) :

So it seems the bon-bon bar is becoming a popular idea at wedding receptions for Anglo-American weddings, I don’t think it has caught on much here in France but no doubt it will very soon. I find ideas and inspiration for mine all over the internet. Here are a few :


So where to find all this cool candy??? There are plenty of candy distributors that have seen a rise in demand for “nostalgic sweets”. One candy company, that I contacted, Nationwide Candy, was happy to accommodate me and ship to France. I called and spoke with a friendly lady who gave me a price quote for my candy selection and shipping, and a congratulations on my pending nuptials! Awww!

I think it is better to play with levels on the bon-bon table, rather than to have everything set out flat. It adds dimensions and makes the table more inviting.

Here’s a couple of good example of playing with levels :

 Here’s an example that I find lacks levels, or too linear of a spread, even if the colors are fun and attractive :

And this one seems a little bare :

Here is an example that I call “overkill” :

So where to get all these sweet things?!?

I went searching on-line for candy retailers in the USA because the sites I found in France tended to lack in imaginative and original sweets, and the prices seemed to me to be a bit too high.

But in order to make the candy bar appealing and enticing to guests, it needs to be decorated and fluffed up to match the theme! The Sugarplum cake shop is concocting a Circus dream cake for us that will be the center piece of the sweet bar. But around the cute jar labels and platters, I will need to add a little more pizazz. I was thinking of bunting, since it is all the rage these days, and is an easy enough DIY project. Some people use fabric for their bunting, but I am considering using paper. I have created a few templates that I am sharing here with you all! I use Gimp, a free open source, on-line image editor. Again, feel free to use them for your own event, but DO send me snapshots that I can share here! With this program you can create fun lettering to go on the bunting flags to spell out the names of the bride and groom, a cute slogan, or the wedding date… Be creative!

You can use fun fonts that are FREE from and match your lettering to your theme as well. Like  these ones below. Or you can even grab fonts that are images and symbols and create playful labels and decorum detailing.

Then add ribbons, tulle and fluff to the palette and voilà! You have a fabulous table that is good to eat from as well as lovely “eye-candy”!

SGA Events – Candy Bar by The Wedding Tea Room, with cupcakes from Synies Cupcakes, photo by Amy Punky Photography


  1. Woah Melissa! On reading you post, apart from remembering just how crazy you Americans are, I couldn’t help thinking one thing: presented with such aesthetic perfection (of the candy bars in the pics), it seems like taking even just one tiny little bonbon would ruin everything! The more it approaches a work of art, the less inclined I’d be to tamper with it.

    Anyway, that was just a passing observation and your idea is, indeed, sweet! Whether the froggies will swallow it or not is another question ;~S

  2. Oh my god I LOVE LOVE this idea!!! Your wedding sounds like it will be amazing! Being an expat as well, I can say that candy is often one of the things you miss! My dad sends me care packages that are pure sugar from home!! A bon bon bar sounds amazing and I’m sure your guests will all love it!

  3. Needless to say, I adore this idea! I love the Sugarplum circus cake, your bon-bon bar and the sweet, retro style of it all—bravo, Melissa! Have you tried contacting Economy Candy in NYC? I don’t know if they ship, but they have all kinds of old-school candy—trop amusant!

  4. Hi Melissa. Just came across your blog and am really enjoying reading about you, Paris and your wedding.

    I play the harp at weddings, and I love it, LOVE it when they set me up at the reception next to the candy bar! Keeps me sugared and energetic to play for a couple hours.

    Oh, if I were in Paris, maybe I could play at your wedding…

    1. Hi Amy,

      Where in the US are you located? We’re looking to have a harpist at our summer wedding! Any recommendations for music? I’m looking through music for our ceremony, but it’s so hard to know what music really exemplifies the qualities of the harp.

  5. I absolutely love the idea of using the different levels! We won’t be having bon-bons, but we will be having cupcakes and I’m envisioning using the same technique with those to make it a bit more fun. Kudos for sharing this wonderful wedding set up 🙂

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