ugly sweater

Ugly Christmas sweaters: It’s a craze

By Jake Eisenberg

It just doesn’t make sense, does it?

The fashion industry is so predicated upon looking “good,” and yet, every time the holiday season rolls around, we find ourselves searching for the perfect “ugly” sweater.

It’s usually the first item found on a list of what not to wear, simply because ugly sweaters are generally unflattering, clash colors and look absolutely ridiculous.

But maybe that’s why we love them.

For 364 days, a lot of thought goes into what we wear; even Halloween—and we spend that “holiday” trying to look as ridiculously fashionable as possible. But, for an ugly sweater party, Christmas morning, or even a snow day, an ugly sweater makes us proud of looking as absurd as we can.

“The uglier they are, and the more it’s clear that you know they’re ugly, which makes them pretty stylish I think,” said sophomore government and politics major Steven Palmer. “Bonus points for ones with funny sayings or pictures.”

They come in all shapes, sizes and designs. Let’s break them down.


Christmas sweaters are without a doubt the most common form of ugly sweater. Whether adorned with a comical Santa Claus, reindeer or elves, it is a staple for opening presents in the morning.

“If having ‘ugly’ Christmas sweaters were not such a trend, then the sweaters would most likely sit in the back of your closet, along with the rest of the clothes that your family buys/makes for you and are just not your style,” sophomore elementary education major Alana Rascoe said. “I personally love ugly Christmas sweaters and look forward to wearing my ugly Christmas vest when we come back from break.”

Looking for a solid Christmas sweater? Your best bet is to ask your favorite knitting relative or find a novelty shop.


Unlike actual snowflakes, snowflake sweaters are less than one-of-a-kind. These are the kind of sweaters that can actually be stylish — winter chic. The winter snowflake sweater is the main way for consumer fashion stores to get in the game and cash in on the trend.

Despite being the most socially acceptable, this is also the most expensive option to enhance your “sweater game.”

For your everyday and fashionably acceptable winter sweater, head to the nearest department store.


This is the category for everything else. The sweaters that you would not wear on any occasion whatsoever with the exception of when you are explicitly told to do so. These are the long-sleeved wonders you find in the back of your parents closet, inside a musty box in the attic, or at a thrift store.

“Ugly sweaters have been co-opted by the nerd community, bringing the trend back and making it retro hip,” sophomore government and politics major Nate Hitchings said. “But things can be ugly and cool.”


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