As Christmas approaches here, you’ll find more than candy canes and lights gracing the scene. It’s also the season for a steadily growing, yet highly unlikely fashion trend of the ugly sweater. Once simply a funny party idea involving a vintage hunt for the ugliest pullover in your aunt’s closet, brand new sweaters can now be found in nearly every department store chain in the country. Sometimes bizarre and often hilarious, these garish garments started gaining steam around the turn of this century and have moved on to become a true holiday tradition. After this coming out of the closet, recent ugly sweater parties have become more of a DIY event that requires a bit more creativity in order to win the contest. Showing up to the same party in the same frock is never a good thing, but it’s particularly weird when it happens to be the same ugly sweater.

This is a doodlewash of an ugly Christmas sweater that I purchased at Urban Outfitters a few years ago. Though I know it was meant to be part of the ugly sweater trend, I found it rather cute. Granted, it is rather over-the-top and the nipple clouds aren’t really helping matters much, but who couldn’t smile seeing Santa enjoying a well-earned skiing holiday. At least, it sort of looks like a tiny Saint Nick. For all I know it could just be a strange gnome of some kind. Which would be even better, because then you could wear this little number well into January, extending its usefulness. I actually bought this on clearance, as it must not have been very popular, and then only wore it once. After pulling it back out again for this sketch, I made a mental note to don it once again at some point this season. Ugly sweaters need love too.

As with anything that becomes trendy, it gets more and more difficult each year to know when someone is in on the joke or just missing a bit of fashion sense. Either way, ugly sweaters bring a lot of fun and joy to the holiday season. And it’s somehow comforting to know that the holidays are one time of year where you don’t have to worry about what you’re wearing. Just close your eyes and grab anything with a bit of red and green that you find in your closet and walk proudly out the door. Whether you’ve just made yourself look festive or have indeed achieved the truly ugly, you can be confident in the fact that you’re celebrating the season in the current style. Another happy holiday season, made a little happier with just a bit of help from the ugly christmas sweater.

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About the Doodlewash

Sennelier L’Aquarelle: Sennelier Red, Indian Yellow, Phthalo. Green Light, Ultramarine Deep, and Payne’s Grey. Lamy Safari Al Star pen with Platinum Carbon with black ink in a little red cloth hardbound l’aquarelle journal I found in a Paris shop.
Day 10 - #WorldWatercolorGroup Ugly Christmas Sweater Santa Elf Skiing men's women's
Posted by:Charlie O'Shields (doodlewash)

Creator of Doodlewash® and founder of World Watercolor Month™ (July) and World Watercolor Group™. Sharing daily watercolor illustrations and stories while proudly featuring talented artists from all over the world!

36 replies on “Ugly Christmas Sweater

  1. Now that is a great ‘ugly sweater’ this year I purchased my first ever ugly sweater for Christmas. We had a Christmas jumper day at work to add some fun around the hospice, then we all had photos taken of each department which were posted on Facebook. The department photo with the most likes then won a box of chocolates. Interestingly our department won. For me the best bit was seeing the patients faces, as they watched us acting rather crazy, I think crazy jumpers had a strange effect on us all that day 😀
    Keep ugly jumpers happy, wear them!! Lol 😆

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Yes I agree Charlie they are always ugly but why?? I think about a new design😊
    Somehow we had to look to something ugly to see the beauty of Christmas.
    Dough you did a nice Doodlewash from an ugly christmas Sweater.
    That is a reminder for me to pick up this kind of sweater; someone saved it the whole year for me. Well I will think about it but I am afraid the sweater has to do the Christmas without me.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Wow, this ugly sweater isn´t even green and red, it´s blue! They probably couldn’t´t decide whether to go with Christmas or Norwegian style… Anyway, it´s outstanding in it´s own way. 😉 And your painting of it is great! Ugly Christmas sweaters always remind me of the Bridget Jones movies – LOVE them!!! Thanks for reminding me! 💕

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Well, that looks fabulously gaudy! I’m sure you look most dashing in that… wonder. 😉 I’m not really feeling this festive sweater craze, I must say. It does seem to have really stepped up here over the past five years or so – ones with lights and everything – to the point where you’re looked at funny if not subscribing to the trend. I rather feel I should leave the festive fashion to Phineas and his friends, those who can pull them off! 😛

    Liked by 1 person

  5. I once drew the Secret Santa Elf lot for a woman who adored ugly Christmas sweaters and had a famous cache of them the way some people collect cat figurines. Fortunately we had a price limit on our week of fun presents to give. I chose a tiny Christmas sweater on a hanger ornament for one of her gifts and a wine bottle Christmas sweater for another, making her very happy. Thank heaven because I find this holiday trend one of the dumbest and definitely ugliest. However, your sweater is truly funny – Santa about to ski into a tree – and it’s mostly blue and white, far less obnoxious than those that drank vats of red and green dye.

    Liked by 1 person

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