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Why we love to hate Christmas jumpers

Written by Fashion

Christmas jumpers are a uniquely terrible item of clothing. Shapeless, gaudy markers of the winter holiday, redeemable only in the warmth they provide to every poor soul who is roped into the tradition. And yet, the tradition persists.

Every December brings a new mass of brightly coloured, glittery monstrosities, and with it another week of people merrily setting off for work and school knowing how ridiculous they look. And loving it. There’s something wonderful about the specific kind of bonding two friends can only experience through laughing at each other, and at themselves.

… you opt instead for the post-box red, knee-length knitted garment, frayed pompoms and all, that clings to your body in all the wrong places. It’s the worst thing you’ve ever seen. You need it.

Every so often, you come across a fairly tasteful Christmas jumper, and you wonder: will I really look good this year for the office Christmas Jumper Day? But that’s hardly in the spirit of things, so you opt instead for the post-box red, knee-length knitted garment, frayed pompoms and all, that clings to your body in all the wrong places. It’s the worst thing you’ve ever seen. You need it.

I am a firm believer that nobody in their right mind would consider a Christmas jumper the height of fashion, but even I can’t deny that they’re a statement. By choosing to wear something so universally unflattering, and in public at that, you tell everyone who sees you that you don’t need to dress “well”, or in a way that “suits your figure”. You are confident, comfortable in yourself and your body, and sometimes, just sometimes, you are over the top and loud. You’re fun. You feel good no matter what you wear and those lumps and bumps that you could swear didn’t even exist until you put on your Christmas jumper are just proof of that. You look silly. But so does everyone else.

Fashion has never been about playing things safe. Fashion is reckless and chaotic and frankly insane. So maybe Christmas jumpers are awful, but that doesn’t exclude them from fashion

If your questionable jumper choices need any more validation, just take a look at the featured pieces at any recent Fashion Week or Met Gala. You don’t see jeans and t-shirts on the runways of Milan. You see avant-garde designs on unexpected silhouettes. You see bold patterns, block colours, architectural details sticking out at angles they really shouldn’t. You see ruffles. Fashion has never been about playing things safe. Fashion is reckless and chaotic and frankly insane. So maybe Christmas jumpers are awful, but that doesn’t exclude them from fashion, and it certainly doesn’t mean we should stop wearing them.

Featured Image: Unsplash

Last modified: 17th November 2020

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