Unraveling the history of the ugly holiday sweater
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Spending quality time with family. Drinking cider by the fire. Playing Secret Santa. All of these activities boost the holiday mood. So does taking out your ugly Christmas sweaters. You might be really lucky. You might get to show off your sweater. You might get to go to an Ugly Christmas Sweater Party.
Ugly Christmas sweaters have a new group of fans. They're no longer made by craft store-obsessed grandmas. They aren't forced upon family members. They don't wind up at thrift stores. They're now a cultural meme. They're filled to the brim with an eggnog-sized cup of irony. Even celebrities are in on the action. A market has sprung up around this wintertime sensation. It capitalizes on the sweaters' popularity. There are ugly sweater books. There's a 5K race. There are trophies. All of these celebrate the tacky sweaters.
Ugly sweaters are harder to come by. That's due to their popularity. This is very true in thrift stores. It used to be easy to purchase ugly sweaters at thrift stores. And who really wants to buy a full-priced light-up snowman sweater? It'll only be worn once a year.
One option is to shop eBay's collection. They have a lot of ugly Christmas sweaters. You may find yourself bidding on a pre-worn tacky pullover.
Another option is to make a sweater from scratch. This is a DIY approach. It is a labor of love. It embraces a time from the past. It's a time when you couldn't buy a tacky sweater in a store. The last minute tactic didn't work.
People have been channeling the holiday spirit through sweaters for decades. They have snowflakes. They have reindeer. And they have Christmas trees. The garishness once reached new heights. That was in the '80s and '90s.
The '40s and '50s were similar. Holiday sweaters had a touch of graphic flashiness. It was essential.
Today you can grab vintage holiday sweater-knitting patterns. You may find them on Etsy. Then pull out your knitting needles. Make something wonderfully ugly. You'll be ready for that Ugly Christmas Sweater Party invitation on your refrigerator.
Any holiday sweaters catch your eye this season?
CRITICAL THINKING QUESTION
Why do you think the tradition of the ugly holiday sweater made a comeback?
Write your answers in the comments section below