Everything looks more impressive when served on an elevated stand. It’s one of the easiest presentation tricks that will instantaneously make anything look more exciting. Take, for example, store-bought cupcakes. Serving them on a flat plate is fine, but put them on a footed cake stand and you have yourself a festive dessert.
Use a cake stand when serving savory foods too. I serve mini quiches, crostinis and tea sandwiches on cake stands and they always look great. A cake stand is particularly useful when you’re setting up a buffet because the varying height adds visual interest to your spread. It’s an easy trick that will literally elevate the appearance of whatever you’re serving.
Living in NYC I can appreciate the lack of space city dwellers have for unnecessary things. That being said, a simple cake stand (glass, crystal or white) is an essential. You don’t even need to take up any precious cupboard space when it’s not in use: Put a cake stand on top of your refrigerator and use it to corral vitamins and other pill bottles; place it on the counter in your kitchen and use it instead of a fruit bowl; or use it on your dresser for perfume bottles (just be sure to wash it really well before you use it for edible displays).