“Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before. Maybe Christmas, he thought… doesn’t come from a store. Maybe Christmas, perhaps… means a little bit more!“
— Dr. Seuss, “How the Grinch Stole Christmas!”
Sweater – Asos (similar) || Skirt – Banana Republic (similar) || Boots – Dune London (similar, other great over-the-knee options) || Bag – Gucci ‘Dionysus’ (obsessed) || Red Bows || Lips – Stila in ‘Beso’
Photos courtesy of Heidi of Wishes & Reality
Do you KNOW?
Friday is UGLY CHRISTMAS SWEATER DAY!
Which, if you’ve followed this blog for the last two years, you probably know is the holiday I look forward to dressing for most in the year.
One of the best life lessons I ever learned from my darling Nana was to NEVER take life too seriously. Goofing off, even for a refined lady like her, has always been an important part of the human experience.
So every year on the third Friday of December, I don a hideous, usually pug-themed, ugly Christmas sweater and generally go around making a complete fool of myself.
Because I can. And because not taking yourself too seriously at Christmas has ALWAYS been a requirement for my family.
Are you with me??
How to Style an Ugly Christmas Sweater
1. Start with a truly offensive sweater
We’re talking the ugliest one you can find. The more bows, bells, and sequins the better. Extra points if you can find one that ties in with your personal interests — like a Christmas Pudding sweater for foodies or a sequined reindeer pug for that Pug-Obsessed Lady you know in Chicago.
Just make sure your sweater can spark curiosity and conversation — that’s the point of such a loud wardrobe piece after all! Here are a few of my favorites:
2. Make It Your Own
Customize, customize, customize.
Don’t just throw your ugly masterpiece on with a pair of jeans — get creative! Layer a silk blouse underneath for a fancier look or wear it with even MORE sequins (like a gold sequin skirt?). Transforming your sweater into something that LOOKS like it SHOULD be a part of your usual closet is part of the ironic fun of the Ugly Christmas Sweater holiday!
3. But Find Balance
While pairing your ugly sweater with bows, bells, sequins, AND fur may be the best way for you to “make it your own”, most of us probably aren’t THAT goofy with our wardrobes. Wearing classic neutrals and other simple pieces to keep the look from feeling TOO crazy can help keep you looking chic in your sweater, not like you need to be returned to the traveling circus.
We love to goof off in my family but we’re always sure to do it WITH style, even when it comes to our ugly Christmas sweaters!
But hey, I won’t judge if you’d rather wear your ugly sweater with crazy pajama pants instead…
4. Have a Theme
My Ugly Christmas sweaters are ALWAYS of pugs these days. But this year I just could not find a new option that I liked more than any of the ones I already owned (remember last year’s Merry Pugmas sweater? How CAN you beat that?).
So I decided to change-up an old sweater this year with a festive unifier instead: red bows!
I bought a giant pack on Amazon for just a couple of dollars then safety pinned them to this old sweater I bought years ago. Then I cut a larger red bow for my Gucci bag and presto! I have a coordinated look that’s completely different from the one I shot in this sweater in 2014! All thanks to Heidi’s brilliant idea to put red bows over everything!