December is here and, as a month compiled of traditions and hyperbole, the customary Christmas sweater comes along with it. Whether you’ve got one you wear with fondness each year or you’re intent on turning your nose up at the stereotypical tackiness, here are some options and insights into the Christmas sweaters available.
Cover photo: ‘All I Want for Christmas’ via Paramount Pictures
Varieties, from the simple to the kitsch, can be opted for, all of which signifying the season in some way. Understated jumpers can be read as festive due to context, consisting of bright red polo necks or black ones with metallic touches. It’s all in the colour – a way of being part of the festivities when you feel you should. In contrast, there’s always the jumpers and cardigans that shout Christmas in volume like the bold clashing shades and precise scene settings.
THE FAIR ISLE
Knits like Nordic and Fair Isle ones are timelessly wintery — their patterns stitched with a sense of tradition while evoking images of snowy mountains. They’re distinctive forms with deep histories but appearance-wise have become easily interlinked in the present day. With their inclusion of motifs such as those reminiscent of snowflakes, the sweaters are connotative of Christmas and its accompanying winter coziness, which we love.
In Ontario, the RetroFestive pop-up (located in Oakville and at the Burlington Centre) is a go-to hub for sourcing a self-proclaimed ‘ugly’ sweater- loud and cringy and emblazoned with things such as ‘I love Xmas ho ho ho ho ho’. If Nordic and Fair Isles represent the longevity of a knitted sweater, then these are more like the epitome of commercialism. But, like with most physical spaces that joyfully embrace the season, it’s a challenge not to get sucked in.
When it comes to luxury and connecting the festive season with a designer name, nothing shouts kitsh quite like Moschino – making all garments a fit for lighthearted ambiences. The teddy bear intarsia sweater is toned down but playful, the bear exemplifying the child-like nature of the season.
Whether it’s full-on sequins arranged in colourful stripes likes rows of tinsel or knits embellished with crystals, touches like this add a shimmer to complement surrounding decor both at parties and in the comfort of home without being too full-on.
Go into any thrift/ vintage store and the first thing you will likely see are the rails of Christmas jumpers ranging from the casually fun, to the Disney-themed, to the overly embellished. There’s something particularly cute and quaint about curled up cats and snowmen scenes- specific prints that are like windows into fantastic moments. You can wear them over a collared top for a sweetly carefree appearance.
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