What is Considered an Ugly Christmas Sweater?
It’s odd to see the word ugly used so gleefully by marketers, but customer expectations change when it comes to these holiday sweaters. There are three essential elements to a sweater that push it into the “Ugly Christmas” category.
The first is a large Christmas-themed print, especially a reindeer, snowman, Santa Claus, Christmas tree, cookies, or maybe even Baby Jesus, himself.
The second is “3D” elements to the sweater. The longstanding trend of applying baubles, mini-knitted scarves, red noses, tree ornaments, and more as real attachments to the sweater’s outer fabric has never waned. The more outlandish, the more the sweater will fit into the “Ugly Christmas” categories.
The final element is bright colors, especially red, green, and white; the “official” Christmas color spectrum. You’ll find plenty of other colors too, of course, but what you’ll notice is that no ugly Christmas sweater can have any fewer than 3 competing colors within the design.
Why are Ugly Christmas Sweaters Called Ugly?
If the sweaters are so popular, why do people insist on calling them “ugly”? There seems to be a host of more suitable words that one could employ, such as novelty, fun, party, etc., but no, we go with ugly. The reason is that they are rooted in a genuine ugliness that people felt when they were forced to wear them by their doting mothers, grandmothers, and crazy aunts during childhood.
Most of us experienced at least one Christmas where an indulgent relative of ours purchased a sweater, thinking we’d really like it, only to find us fighting back the cringe on Christmas morning. In this context, the sweaters were genuinely ugly. As many of us grew up, however, the story changed. Now they’ve become a bit of a joke, and we wear them to stand out and show our Christmas spirit.
In short, they’re called ugly because they rather lack aesthetically. You’d certainly never see them showcased at Paris fashion week! It reminds us that we all have to do our part in the season of fun to generate a party atmosphere.
Can you Wear an Ugly Christmas Sweater After Christmas?
Okay, there are no laws against wearing an ugly Christmas sweater whenever you want, but I’m not sure why you would. If you’re the sort of person, who likes to wear men’s Christmas sweaters at home, as sleepwear, or just for fun, then knock yourself out. Outside of the context of the holiday season, however, the sweaters lose their ironic appeal.
The general consensus is that it’s okay to start wearing the ugly Christmas sweaters and Pajamas after Thanksgiving. That’s because everyone will know you are getting ready for Christmas. We suggest you opt-out of ugly Christmas sweater-wearing once the holidays are done.
Don’t forget to order your sweater in advance so that it will ship on time! You wouldn’t want to go looking as lame as “ordinary” at your family Christmas now, would you?