Christmas In July

Christmas In July

As celebrations with family resume, here’s a fun Christmas-in-July-themed tablescape to liven up a midsummer party.

Floral design, photos and text by TJ McGrath @TGMcGrathDesigns

Fresh botanicals courtesy of  The Floral Source and Ferris Brothers Wholesale Florist Confections courtesy of  The Peasant Baker

I grew up in a large family with eight siblings, and on Christmas morning, our family room was so packed with gifts that there was hardly a place for all of us to sit and unwrap presents. Because of my experience, I like to create “fantasy” tablescapes  that are packed full, like our family room was, and deeply layered, to create a feeling of abundant bounty, with hardly an open spot for people to sit and enjoy all the goodies.

TJ McGrath Tutorial Christmas in July

To create this fantasy holiday tablescape, I curated a collection of vintage milk-glass containers and mixed them with more contemporary vessels. For my traditional red-and-white color palette, I selected all white flowers; red-and-white place settings; and red fruits and veggies, including ‘Bing’ cherries, strawberries, raspberries, grapes, apples, bell and cherry peppers, pears, and even watermelon, to make Christmas-tree-shaped cake toppers. Bell peppers, when sliced in half horizontally, can serve as great vessels for miniature arrangements or single blooms.

Step – By – Step

Step 1
Choose a large milk-glass container to create the main centerpiece for the center of the table and/or buffet. Secure a hairpin holder into the container with adhesive clay, and arrange a varied selection of flowers into the container.

Step 2
Choose additional smaller containers and vases—or even bell peppers—and create monobotanical designs in some of them and fill others with flowering plants. Place them to accessorize the main centerpiece.

Step 3
Mix into the collection tiered serving stands filled with a variety of fresh fruit and confections, like cakes, cookies and candies.

Lay stems of seasonal foliages and a few pieces of fruit on the table and/or buffet.

Finish accessorizing with taper and pillar candles.



  • Papaver rhoeas ‘Amazing Grey’ (corn poppy, field poppy, Flanders poppy, Shirley poppy)
  • Papaver seedpod (poppy pod)
  • Paeonia lactiflora (Chinese peony, garden peony)
  • Rosa ‘Alabaster’ (garden rose)
  • Rosa (spray garden rose)
  • Hydrangea quercifolia (oak-leaf hortensia, oak-leaf Hydrangea)
  • Consolida ajacis/C. ambigua (larkspur, rocket larkspur, doubtful knight’s spur)
  • Ornithogalum thyrsoides (chincherinchee, star-of-Bethlehem)
  • Daucus carota (Queen Anne’s lace, wild carrot)
  • Chamelaucium uncinatum (waxflower, Geraldton waxflower)
  • Magnolia grandiflora, blooms and foliage (bull bay, Southern Magnolia)
  • Viburnum , berried
  • Petunia x hybrida, potted (common garden Petunia)
  • Begonia spp. , potted


  • Hairpin Holders (round and oval) from Floral Genius
  • FloraLife® SURE-STIK® Floral Adhesive from Oasis Floral Products
  • Taper candles and candleholders
  • Pillar candles and hurricane holders
  • Assorted vintage milk-glass

Related Articles


Pocket Boutonnières Made Easy

Two methods for creating this new generation of boutonnières Floral design and text by Patience Pickner, AIFD, PFCI Photos by Photography by Scott Chamberlain, S.D. Presented by Fitz Design POCKET SQUARES I designed this pocket “boutonnière” for a customer who prefers...

read more

Dazzling Duo

Coordinating corsage and boutonnière for style-setting prom-goers Floral design, photos and text by Nita Robertson, AIFD Presented by Reliant Ribbon The approaching prom season offers myriad opportunities for florists to show off their creativity and awareness of...

read more

Eco-Friendly Suspended Arrangement

NYC floral designer Juan Villanueva shares a dramatic design idea that is considerate of the environment Floral design, photos and text by Juan M. Villanueva Villanueva Designs New York, N.Y. At Villanueva Designs, we often incorporate dramatic suspended floral...

read more

About The Author


Our Free Newsletter

Reliant Ribbon

Search Our Categories


florists' review

For all the latest industry news, contest announcements, new product introductions and much more join our weekly newsletter club.

Your information is safe with us! We do not sell or trade our customer’s data with third parties.