For the most beautiful time of the year, we sure do love to deck ourselves out in the ugliest knitwear. Garish colours, Sixties graphics, offensive noises and lights, nothing is taboo when it comes to Christmas jumpers.
But is there such thing as a stylish Christmas jumper? I mean, if Trump could become President, surely they can make a festive sweater that doesn’t make your eyes bleed if you stare at it for longer than 30 seconds.
I decided to call in a few of 2016’s standout Christmas jumpers and got the girls from our sister publication Stylist to give us their personal critique on them. Yes, some of their words are harsh and did bring tears to my eyes, but it’s best to learn the truth before you look like an absolute twat at your office Christmas party.
The blinding cardigan
Moya Crockett, Stylist Writer: “This looks like a festive version of the cardigans all my male friends wore when we were 15 and going through a Smiths phase, so I feel weirdly affectionate towards it. It’s objectively one of the more ridiculous jumpers from the pile, but you look quite at home in it, so I’ll give it a pass.”
Sarah Biddlecombe, Stylist Writer: “I love everything about this cardigan, from the squashed-face Rudolphs to the mismatched buttons. It’s bright, it’s festive and guaranteed to clash with everything you own. Brilliant.”
Conclusion: Your grandad was right. Cardigans are sick.
Total mince pie score: 5/5
The “scenic” 3D Christmas tree jumper
Moya: “This is absolutely gross and looks like it might get a bit sweaty and itchy if you wore it for more than a few hours, but I actually quite like it. I think it’s the blue sky/yellow stars background, which reminds me of a “Christmas picture” (did anyone else have those?) that I used to hang on my wall as a kid. Which just goes to show that Christmas has nothing to do with taste and everything to do with ~memories~.”
Sarah: “I’m disappointed they opted for so much blue – aside from the tree and the wreath, this is barely recognisable as a Christmas jumper. If you’re going to do it, do it properly.”
Conclusion: Like Duchamp’s urinal art, this jumper has divided opinion. Inconclusive.
Total mince pie score: 2/5
The when-were-dinosaurs-Christmassy Jurassic World jumper
Moya: “YES. Big fan. Nice festive nod with the Santa hat, but also looks like you could comfortably wear it round the house for a week without washing it and it would be fine, which is what I actually look for in a Christmas jumper. I kind of want it for myself.”
Sarah: “Finally a jumper with some snowflakes, even if it is all black (I would have preferred a festive green). I reckon if you top it off with some tinsel or a santa hat you could get away with this on Christmas day.”
Conclusion: Dinosaurs are cool whatever age you are.
Total mince pie score: 4/5
The moving fire place jumper
Moya: “Not my favourite. I actually kind of hate it. I’m not sure why it grates on me so much – maybe the red bricks? The whole effect is a bit cheap and brash and not especially funny. You don’t look like ‘yourself’ in it. Get rid.”
Sarah: “Looking at all those rectangular red bricks is making my eyes go a bit funny, and that brown neckline is just offensive. That said, the idea of putting teeny tiny presents in the detachable stockings appeals to me no end."
Conclusion: The cute factor is trumped by the tragedy of it all. Good thing it’s burning, because it needs thrown on the fire.
Total mince pie score: 1/5
The wish upon a Star Wars jumper
Moya: “This is a Star Wars reference, right? It doesn’t do it for me, although I’m sure some small nephews will enjoy it at Christmas dinner."
Sarah: “I don’t get the joke, and don’t even get me started on that weird vom green colour. That is not the green of Christmas."
Conclusion: People hate Star Wars and the colour of sick.
Total mince pie score: 0/5
The slightly scary snowman jumper
Moya: “A bit boring; it looks like the kind of thing you’d buy in the clothes section of a supermarket. I hope you didn’t spend a lot of money on it."
Sarah: “Light up jumpers are tacky, garish and desperate for attention – ie. everything a proper Christmas jumper should be. I love the smiley snowman and his reindeer antlers (what a joker), plus the jumper itself is actually quite nice. Winner.”
Conclusion: A safe Christmas jumper bet. It won’t make babies cry, but it won’t turn heads either.
Total mince pie score: 3.5/5
The classic Coca Cola advert jumper
Moya: “This probably looks the most ‘normal’ out of the lot. It’s not offensive; I actually quite like it aesthetically. What bothers me is it’s maybe a bit ‘cool’ for a Christmas jumper – and that in itself makes me cringe more than some of the more obviously embarrassing offerings. If you’re going to do it, go the whole hog, ya know?"
Sarah: “Why is Santa looming out of space alongside a giant moon? Improbable. Plus, this looks like the kind of stock jumper they make the people handing out free cans of coke wear. Dull."
Conclusion: Too hipster for Christmas and Santa looks like an aggressive pervy moon man.