Layers and levels...
That is what I think about when I set a buffet table for a party.
I love to mix fabrics, napkins and table cloths...patterns, colors, styles, textures.
I find that if I buy what I love...things that get me excited...it all works together.
I pull out sturdy storage items to use as risers under the fabric...photo boxes, books, upside down plastic bins, a computer box, etc...
This time I used a vintage platter to group small bowls of chili toppings.I also included a garden lantern with a flame-less candle...not so much for the light but more for the feeling it gave the whole look.
When setting up for your next party, look around your house and see what you might have that can create visual interest...levels, color, coordination...souvenirs, mementos, pictures, collections.
Candles and fresh flowers are always a nice addition to.