Dec 24, 2010

Behind the Scenes at The Today Show

View my entertaining tips on The Today Show segment here!

We have a special treat for you today.  We stopped by The Today Show this morning for a live segment for their 9am hour.  I was on air to share with anchor Tamron Hall {and lots of viewers} how to create sweets tables for both Christmas and New Year’s.  Click above to see both the behind-the-scenes vlog and the actual segment.  Scroll down to get fun last minute ideas for the holidays and see behind-the-scenes pictures.  Happy Holidays and enjoy!

We set up the day before at NBC Studios and had a chance to check out the world famous Christmas tree at Rockefeller Plaza.  Even though I live in NYC, I hadn’t yet seen the tree.  It was robust and stunning in person.

Setting up in studio the night before.  The Today Show staff set up everything beautifully according to our instructions. That’s Eric looking over the details of the table.

Today Show staff putting the linens on the New Year’s Table…

A peek at the Christmas table…

All set up.  A glance of the studio from outside.  Everyone was swooning outside the studio.  After this, we headed home for some dinner and rest.

Morning of….My makeup/hair gal {and great friend} Val Velez came over at 5am to make me camera ready.  She’s very talented.  I definitely don’t wake up with bouncing curls:)

The Today Show patio on the morning of…

Crowds are getting ready to line up…

Ready to go in…

A peek at the Today Show kitchen.  Their food styling team is absolutely wonderful.

Sound technician putting my mic on…

Some last minute touches on the table before going on…

Almost ready…

With Tamron Hall right before the segment…

After the segment, Head Food Stylist Bianca and I make a champagne toast for the New Year…

With Tamron Hall…

Okay, now on to some close-ups of the goodies…The photographs are not so great, but you can see the last minute ideas that you all can do at home (even today).  Below are standard vanilla cupcakes accessorized with marshmallow peeps and peppermint candy.  If you don’t have time to bake, purchase from the bakery or get Little Debbie cakes and accessorize them.  We had other cupcakes on the table dressed up with all red Hammond’s candy, maltballs, red licorice pastels, m & m’s, and gummy stars.  We also dressed up everyday white platters with festive gift wrap paper.

Snowman marshmallows on a skewer.  Your kids can help with making these (mine did!)  We used chuckles candy for hats, candy cane sticks for arms, and drew on them with an edible pen (a la Decorated Cookie).  You can also see that we dressed up an everyday linen with sparkly silver craft paper (you can get these in a craft store).  Dessert tags were used from everyday gift enclosure cards.

A side view of the full table.  We hung a garland in the front of the table and attached Christmas cards on it to show off Christmas cards from friends and family.  You can do this on your mantle, dinner, buffet, or even your front door.  We accessorized moonpies by stacking them and sprinkling them with sanding sugar.

Candy cane cookies made by Patti Paige and dressed up with rock candy (looks like snow).  If you don’t have rock candy, you can use coconut, white sprinkles, marshmallows, etc.

Snowman milk (inspired by BHG and Celebrations at Home) and rice crispy treats styled with gift wrap paper flags.

A view of the New Year’s table.  We covered styrofoam cones from Michael’s by gluing (with glue gun) small ornaments to the styrofoam cones.  The round balls represented the ball dropping for the New Year.  We tied that theme throughout the whole table.  We used round desserts like maltballs, round chocolate pretzels from Nabisco, round cookies, and truffles.  The diy runner in the middle of the table is made from gift wrap paper…

We also echoed the round theme with sparkly round craft paper confetti.  We cut out round sparkly gift wrap paper using a circular craft punch.  Kids can help with this!  It adds a sparkly element to the table and if your kids stay up, they can throw it up in the air at midnight. Notice there are also small balls on the diy gift wrap paper runner.  We also dressed up moonpies again with flags by cutting out rectangular flags from gift wrap paper and attaching them to lollipop sticks.

The vessels that we used were gift wrap boxes.  We used square and rectangular boxes, but you can use any shaped box.  Stack bowls on top to make it look more interesting. The garland is made of spray painted leaves, pine cones, and ornaments…

Of course you need drinks for your New Year’s table.  Here are champagne glasses dressed up with some beading.  The little glasses are for kids just in case they stay up at night for the New Year and they were styled with gift wrap paper and rock candy stirrers.

Done with the segment and now off to spend holidays with family and friends.  Have a wonderful holiday everyone from Amy Atlas and team!

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  • Great Behind the Scenes, what a fun thing to do!

  • Wonderful setup!

  • You are fabulous!! What yummy tables!!

  • Diana Oropeza

    Great ideas… You have inspired me.

  • Have a wonderful holiday season Amy!!

  • Charlotte Haines


  • mara

    wow explendid! all beautiful and sweet!

  • Notsoplainjane

    Would love to know about the centerpieces on the Christmas table. Are they tissue and ornaments? Stunning!!
    Great post!

  • Great Ideas! Love to see you behind the scenes.

  • Thanks for sharing the behind the scenes photos, so interesting! Beautiful tables!

  • Everything looks GREAT, congrats. Loved the behind the scenes photos, always great to see.

  • Love the tables. They are Fabulous as usual.

  • How very exciting to be on the Today Show. Your tables looked beautiful and I really liked the blue trees for the New Years Table.

  • Great segment! I especially liked the idea about everything being round. Also, the milk bottle snowmen were picture perfect.

  • You look so beautiful and the tables look so yummy! Enjoy your holiday!!

  • You were fabulous – a total natural! You looked great and the tables were stunning. Happy Holidays! xoxo

  • Beautiful Amy, I was so happy to see you live on the Today show on Orbit News. Your tables were amazing and so inspiring!
    Happy New Year! May God Bless you with good health, peace, happiness success and prosperity.
    Best Wishes,

    P.S would love to share with you my Christmas dessert tables

  • Love both tables, fantastic job Amy. I will be making those milk/snowman jars next year for sure!

  • Love this!! Thanks so much for the awesome tips!! I love how you incorporate store bought items like Little Debbies and Moonpies into your table yet make them look so elegant!! Congrats on your beautiful work on the Today show.

  • That would be a dream to get to go onto the Today Show stage.

    Beautiful pictures I loved them


  • Your dessert tables are beautiful as usual. Love how you incorporated Moon Pies…those are the big deal in Mobile, AL where I live. They actually had a huge Moon Pie made and are dropping it from the top of a building tonight to mimic the “ball” in Times Square! Moon Pies are huge during Mardi Gras too in Mobile.

    • I loved the moon pies as well! They are my favorite ready made snack! Would just love to see one drop on New Year’s eve! Wonderful tablescapes, Amy! You really have a gift! Everyone at the Today Show is so nice, aren’t they?

  • what a great post to see all the behind the scene work…..looked like a great segment. just found you from in style and looking forward to more of your blog and events! Happy New Year !!

  • LOVE this! What a great inside look behind the scenes! All the best Amy for your continued success, it is so wonderful to watch! I’m waiting on the book! 🙂


  • So cute!

  • Beautiful ideas! You look like you had a lot of fun in spite of the hard work. Inspiring!

  • Congratulations, Amy! May you have a year full of great ideas that you could share with all of us, of course ☺. Happy New Year!

  • Congrats, Amy! You are WONDERFUL on tv! I am sure we will be seeing you more on TV! Awesome job! LOVE the milk containers!

  • Karen S

    Your work is fantastic as always. Wishing you continued success….well deserved.

  • How neat! Congrats on the exposure. Looks like a ton of fun and your tables are GORgeous, as usual.

  • Pretty Pink Tulips

    Amy (and team),

    I was watching The Today Show the day you were on….and I was giddy with excitement! You did an amazing job in your presentation and as always, your ideas are genius!

    Congratulations! I know you’re already incredibly successful, but making it on The Today Show is a huge deal.

    ~ Elizabeth

  • Beautiful! Thanks for giving away all your inspiration
    You’re an Angel with the talent on the wings of illusion transformed
    really! Namaste Amitabha