The journey of the ugly Christmas sweater has been an interesting one. What started out as the endearing holiday wear of kindergarten teachers and grandmothers everywhere somehow morphed into a hipster trend and ultimately a mainstream obsession. From office holiday parties to family gatherings, the ugly Christmas sweater has become a seasonal staple. Fans of tinsel and pompoms once had to scrounge through the racks of thrift stores and Buffalo Exchange hoping to find that one perfect Rudolph sweater. But all that has changed, with the mass production of the ugly Christmas sweater (I’m looking at you, Wal-Mart and Forever 21) the festive outerwear has become incredibly common.
I think there is still something so much more charming about purchasing a pre-owned sweater that no one else is going to have. Evidently, I’m not alone because a store has popped up on Lovers Lane right next to the Inwood Village movie theater that exclusively sells ugly Christmas sweaters—appropriately named “That Ugly Christmas Sweater Store.”
Even if you wouldn’t be caught dead in anything with Santa’s face on it, you might still want to visit the shop as you scramble to buy gifts. You know those people in your family who are particularly difficult to shop for? Well, fear not. This place has something for all of them.
For the family member who can’t make it through the day without telling a dirty joke:
This bright red one features a picture of Betty Boop and the words “Santa Baby xoxo” (except the o’s are hearts). It’s cartoonish, and it’s creepy.
For the family member who has a “Don’t Mess with Texas” bumper sticker:
This one isn’t a sweater technically, but rather a sweatshirt (which might be more practical for your duck-hunting, pickup-driving uncle anyway.) It features a snowy scene with an adorable snowman dressed like a cowboy. So go ahead, buy it for your loved one who knows all the verses of “Deep in the Heart of Texas.”
For the family member who is just a little… off:
You know that classic holiday tradition of peeking in your neighbors' windows to see what they’re up to? Well, this sweater celebrates your nosy family member’s urge to creep without the risk of unsettling the neighbors. This bright blue piece is adorned with numerous windows framing different scenes: a Christmas tree with gifts, a curled up kitten, some stockings hanging, and more. They can peek away and no one will call the police.
For the family member who hates the holidays:
Shopping for the Grinch? You’re in luck. This one is unique for numerous reasons: first, it’s short sleeved. I’m a little confused as to what kind of weather this item is intended for. When is it cold enough to merit a sweater but warm enough for short sleeves to be acceptable? Regardless, this sweater lacks anything holiday themed. Instead, it depicts a lighthouse, some sailboats, and an American flag. Why is this in a Christmas store? What climate-confused person is going to purchase it? These are all questions that I’ll be pondering throughout the season.
For the family member who REALLY loves the holidays:
This sweater vest practically screams “SANTA!?!!!? I KNOW HIM!!” It’s got everything the reindeer-loving, carol-singing, hot cocoa-chugging Christmas-obsessed person could ever want. I’ll be more specific: Tiny ornaments? Check! Christmas stockings? Check! Red and green festive fur-lined sleeves? Check!
The store is open through December 27, but I suggest you hurry before the ugliest sweaters are gone.
Hayley Waring is a level 5 improv student at the Dallas Comedy House training center. If the world was a perfect place she would spend her days writing poetry with Alexander Hamilton while sharing an ahi tuna tower.