The Unique Life of the Christmas Sweater

The Life of a Christmas Sweater started long before we were laughing.

It seems like every holiday party I go to everyone is wearing an ugly Christmas sweater for fashion and function rather than just for getting laughs.  With just two weeks before Christmas I have been co-hosting “Countdown to Christmas” with my friends at Sewing Machines Plus.

It was midweek when we decided to create a contest for the viewers to see if they could guess how many Christmas sweaters I would wear during a live 8 hour show.

Check out the video to view the Christmas sweaters and a few outtakes… and  let me know which sweater is your favorite!

As a holiday tradition and a wardrobe staple, let’s take a look at the unique life of the Christmas sweater.

In the 1950’s the Christmas sweater first appeared but was called a Jingle Bell Jumper. It was all about promoting wholesome family fun and crazy commercialism. These sweaters featured snowmen, reindeer, and Santa Claus but they were done in muted, neutral colors.

In the 1960’s and 1970’s, the Christmas sweater got pushed aside for more mod styles as the fashion trends shifted.

In the 1980’s the Ugly Christmas sweater had a major turning point when the sweaters showed up on sitcoms in bright colors, with kitschy themes, that created a new trend in holiday family photo traditions.

In the 1990’s and 2000’s we saw the rise of the Ugly Christmas Sweater Party. With the strength of Gen X behind the sweaters, the Ugly Christmas Sweater reached cult status. Vintage sweaters came out from Grandma’s cedar chest and thrift stores were sold out of the delightfully dreaded sweater.

The Unique Life of the Christmas Sweater - Various style of Sweaters -JaneClauss.com

In the 2010’s to today, the Ugly Christmas Sweater went from the mainstream audience to a global phenomenon! It’s a symbol of holiday fun, cheesy nostalgia and the joy of embracing the less-than-perfect.

The Unique Life of the Christmas Sweater - Green Christmas Sweater with garland - JaneClauss.com

The unique life of the Christmas sweater is a testament to our love for the holidays, to embrace the absurd, and to find joy in the most unexpected places. So, the next time you pull on that garish, tinsel-laden monstrosity, remember the long and winding unique life of the Christmas sweater.

If you want to get crafty try making your own ugly Christmas sweater or learn how you can upcycle them to fashionable home decor for the holiday season.

Jane Clauss is a lifestyle expert, radio and Emmy award winning television host.  She has a passion for upCrafting and giving old stuff a new life.  Jane uses her creativity and innovation to inspire others to create and make happiness homemade! Learn more about Jane here!

This post may contain affiliate links. This means if you click on the link and make a purchase, we may receive a small commission at no additional cost to you. We only recommend products and services that we believe in and use ourselves. 

About Jane

Hi I’m Jane!
A television host by day and a creative maker my entire life. I spend most moments of the day thinking about what I am going to make next, whether it be in the craft room or kitchen, I always have the urge to create.

My favorite things include fitness, fashion and food and my goal is to spread love everywhere I go. Yellow is my signature color because it always makes you smile, and I love to turn the camera on you to showcase your creative genius!

At JaneClauss.com you will find projects that anyone can make from beginners to experts. I share step by step tutorials and videos to get your creative juices flowing! I am also peeling back the curtain on other creative makers to showcase what makes them tick!

I always say Happiness is Handmade. So spend an hour a day with me and then go do whatever else you want, I promise you’ll feel better for doing so. I am so HAPPY you are here!

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🌟Turn that old sweatshirt lounging in your closet into a TRENDY MASTERPIECE with a one-of-a-kind EMBROIDERY design! 🧵✂️ You’re gonna love how simple stitches can transform something you thought was trash into a personalized fashion treasure. 🌍💕 For more sustainable inspiration just head to my website! 
Link in bio! ❤️💛
#upcyclewithme #sustainablefashion #makesomething #brotherambassador #diybyjane #diydesigner #upcycled
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Tune in to the latest episode of Creative Living with me to get the facts on nutrition myths from expert @brady.j.holmer 🫐🍎🍌Learn how to fuel your body and brain for peak creativity through diet secrets backed by science. 🥗🍓🥑🍊🥚🍇🥝🥩🥦🥕
Here’s a snippet but the full episode is an available wherever you get your podcasts or on my website Janeclauss.com
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Kicking off the New Year on @wlsam890 by sharing my tips for happy HEALTHY habits as we start 2024! 🎉
For the full segment, follow the link in my bio! 

H = Help others! 
Open a door, carry a heavy bag, or share a smile, by helping others you will feel mentally fulfilled.

E = Exercise!
Get up and get moving! Go for a walk, try something new,  take the stairs, just get motivated to move!

A = An Apple a Day!
Eat right, focus in your nutrition because it’s key to living a healthy life.

L = Love someone!
Love releases endorphins in the body those tiny little feel good vibes that make us happy. Happy equals healthy.

T = Take a dose of P.M.A. 
PMA is Positive Mental Attitude and a positive mental attitude is contagious so put a smile on your face and look at the bright side! 

H = Healthy is as healthy does.
Lead by example because if you’re living a healthy lifestyle others will follow.  And with that you are already making a difference in 2024.

Y = YOU are #1 so be sure to make time for yourself.
Create a balance with your life, with work, with family, with friends, and with personal time.  Relieve stress, meditate, get enough sleep, relax, play, and enjoy where you are right now because that is exactly where you are supposed to be!

2024 is already shaping up to be the best year yet! So get out there and believe in living a healthy lifestyle!
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Having a champagne break after “sleighing” in the kitchen! #christmascooking 🎅🏼❤️🎄💚
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Feeling very FESTIVE in my purple with only 5 days left before Christmas!!! 🎄💜🎅🏼 💜
Is your shopping done?? and is your making & baking done?? That’s what I want to know! …..because mine is not and you’ll make me feel better if yours isn’t either! 😘
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Feeling festive in my sustainable Christmas dress! 🎄 Made from an old t-shirt and a men’s button down dress shirt 👔 Two classics turn into a new look!! 💚🎅🏼❤️#christmasdress #sustainablefashion #janeclauss #diybyjane
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How many Ugly Christmas sweaters can a girl  wear in one day??!! 🎄🎅🏼 Like I always say, “more is more and less is a bore!” 💚❤️
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Happiness is handmade at JaneClauss.com so consider this your home for creative inspiration featuring must have DIY projects, bing worthy tv, and ideas to improve your life thru creativity. Jane shares how to spark joy with the latest in food, fashion, home decor, gifts, crafts and more.


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