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.
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 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.
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!
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