You Can Create Your Own Ugly Christmas Sweater!

You Can Create Your Own Ugly Christmas Sweater!

To celebrate Ugly Christmas Sweater Day, we asked Elin Miner, Thrift Store District Manager for Opportunity Village to take over our blog.

December 11th is Ugly Christmas Sweater Day!  If you missed out on the chance to purchase your one-of-a-kind sweater during the Christmas Opening at the Village General Store here in Clear Lake, (Always the first Friday in November!) you still have plenty of time to stop by and pick up supplies to make your own.

A true Ugly Christmas Sweater is one that was sold during the 1980’s with a Christmas or winter-style design.  During the 1990’s and 2000’s they still sold them but they were seen more as a gag gift or something that your well-meaning, but fashion clueless, Grandma or Great Aunt might give you for a present.  They gained popularity again in the 2010’s with the start of the Ugly Christmas Sweater Parties.  Some of the more unique ones can cost $25 - $75 at Mall pop-ups and on line.  The Village General Store sells vintage Christmas sweaters for just $5 to $10 each!

Ugly Christmas Sweater

Ugly Christmas Sweaters are a popular theme for holiday gatherings.

Don’t want to spend that kind of money but want to have fun at the next Ugly Christmas Sweater Party?  Make your own!  Stop by the Village General Store and find a sweater to use as your base for just $3.  Then stroll through the Christmas decorations to find the rest of your supplies and get creative.  For just $7 I was able to find this amazing pink tinsel garland, awesome pink poinsettia, bird, bells and plastic ornaments to finish off this sweater and matching earrings!  For everyone’s safety, be sure to use plastic or satin ornaments and not glass.

Sweater Supplies

Here are all the supplies you'll need to create your own one-of-a-kind ugly sweater!


You can attach your decorations to your sweater in a number of ways.  I chose to use floral wire because I was too lazy to sew, the glue from glue guns never seem to hold and I always get burned.  Cut the wire long enough to fit the pieces you are attaching with at least an inch on each end after you secure it with a couple of twists.  Fold the wire in half forming a U shape and insert it into the sweater from the inside so you don’t get scratched up when you are wearing it.  After the decoration is secure, use a needle nose plyer to curl in the ends to finish it off and to be safe.  In a little while you can be wearing your very own version of an Ugly Christmas Sweater!

Wire Twisting

Using wire to attach your sweater enhancements is easy to do (and you don't have to sew!).



New Christmas items (Including Vintage Christmas Sweaters!) and other great merchandise arrives daily and is taken to the sales floor as soon as possible.  Visit the Village General Store at 830 HWY 18 West in Clear Lake, Iowa.  Purchases at the Village General Stores go to support individuals with disabilities to achieve success at home, at work and in their communities through Opportunity Village.

Finished Sweater

The finished product! Find great accessories and holiday decorations at the Village General Store.


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