I did the table for a friend's daughter's reception last night. Here's an example where a simple spread is able to look lush and beautiful. We discussed a few different options for food, and then just decided on fruit, and a "top your own" cheesecake bar. The guests seemed pretty happy, and although my friend did tons of topping options, it didn't break the bank (at least I hope --she really did go all out on toppings!).
They chose a sage green and rose theme, with kind of an English feel to it --both mother and daughter loved the movie Emma, and I couldn't help thinking of this movie when I saw the decorations. I used wild sage from a field near my house, and domestic sage, English heather, and euonymous from my yard. I also threw in a few artichokes, roses (of course), and lavender for bulk.
Lucky for me, they held the reception in the community center (which is beautiful!) so we were able to use lighted candles for the centerpiece. I filled the bottoms the candle hurricanes with water, and the herbs I'd chosen for the garland.
Unfortunately I forgot my knife, and as Jeff already brought me my piping bags and tips for decorating the display cakes, I couldn't call him a second time. So the sliced and fanned strawberries I'd planned on for cake garnish didn't happen. I think the cakes turned out OK anyway. Anyway, fun job. No major stress over the food, and I had enough time to decorate like I wanted to. This is when I love catering.