A Minute to Myself (119)
A Minute to Myself (120)

I Have Nothing to Wear: Holiday Sweaters

Could someone please let me know if the women who wear holiday sweaters are aware of how silly they look or do they really think that it’s a look to wear out in public? I am aware that teachers are not universally recognized as being fashion trendsetters, but in the past few years of working in a school building I can say that we dress pretty much like anyone else who doesn’t have money to spend on anything that is in a fashion magazine. But now it is positively a horror to walk down the English Department hall.

There seems to be a competition between two teachers as to who has the most holiday sweaters and matching earrings. Why, why would a 60-year old woman want to wear a red Santa sweater? And why would an almost 60-year old woman wear Christmas tree ornament earrings? Yes, I know that Christmas is coming, and yes I know that it is very exciting. I can see them getting all worked up about Jesus’s birthday (just like my student who keeps writing “Jesus Christ December 25” on my students' birthday chalkboard). It is just too horrible to look at them.

Is it childish? Do children get subjected to these deranged sweaters with appliquéd stars? Is it that they really think they are picking up the mood of the room? Do they think that just by standing in the front of the room in a red and silver sweater a whole classroom of students will stop moaning about writing timed essays and will be infused with holiday cheer as they gladly analyze the sayings of some long-dead, long-winded philosopher? Are they suffering from the initial stages of Alzheimer’s and need to be reminded that Christmas is coming? Perhaps these sweaters are actually some kind of visual shopping list. Oh yes, a star, that reminds me to get earrings for my daughter, she likes stars. And the reindeer, that reminds me to get my husband something for his car (maybe a GPS so he and Santa don't get lost). And the snow ball, that reminds me that I need to get more icing (or is it frosting?) for the cookies I will be sending to everyone who annually sends to me a tin of cookies.

We know that it’s certainly not image-enhancing since I am pretty sure that most women over the age of five don’t want to be a walking fashion faux pas.

Do these women buy these sweaters for themselves or are they gifts? I cannot for the life of me imagine going into a store only to find myself contemplating the red sweater with Santa or the red sweater with a gingerbread house. Do you think about how it will look on the “gift” designee or do you just go for the most garish design? I mean what are the thought processes that brings a person to spend money on an annual sweater.

I wonder if there’s a company that offers an annual subscription. “Buy now and get a new Christmas sweater for the next ten years; you’ll have it before December 1st so you’ll have plenty of time to go holiday shopping in your holiday sweater. And if you buy a subscription for a friend, we guarantee that you will not get the same sweater design.”

Seriously, sort of, why is this part of the tradition? Does it mean that we really do look beyond what people look like and look into their hearts instead? Is that it? If you can see past this ugliness you will find my beauty? Is that the true and new holiday message?



Ho Ho HO . . . How funny! I never got the allure of the Christmas sweaters either. Is it maybe because it is the last place where one can display their holiday leanings without being criticized or censored?


Thanks for the laugh - I needed it!


I don't understand them either. Just because the tree is cute, doesn't mean that I want to look like one.

I understand the silly Santa dress that my child received as an early gift from an adult who does wear goofy sweaters. It's red velour with a furry Santa-esque collar. She's four years old. So she isn't in danger of someone thinking the outfit suits her jolly round body.

Laura of Rebellious Thoughts of a Woman

Judith, so there's a statement in the not wearing as much as there is in the wearing. Scrooges, all the non-wearing ladies. Wait a minute, are there Christmas sweaters for men? This is totally sexist. What a shock.

April. You never know what you will find here, tears or laughter. Same as my life.

Christine, that sounds as cute as a watermelon sunsuit--for a four-year-old. But when the big girls go for the Santa-esque collar sweaters, it's just sad, in a "why doesn't someone talk to her" way.


As a non-Christmas-sweater-GUY, I've got nothing. Sorry. I don't get Christmas sweaters at all, heh.


I am happy to say that I have yet to see a Christmas sweater on any teacher in my very diverse New York City school. This is just fine with me!

Very funny and very true...thanks for the laugh!

Midlife Slices

I hate Christmas attire....except in people under the age of 7 and then they'd better be damn cute or I'll hate it on them too. Ugh....


I just don't get the attraction to these either but I know plenty of those that do. My kids always tease me that they are going to buy me one of those sweaters. Unless I am dead, I will not be wearing one of those.


Not only does my mother in law doll herself in all of the Christmas clothes and accessories, but she buys them for me.


To me Christmas sweaters are like fruitcake. (How do I write shuddering?) How's this for an alternative: a plain white T with the words "This IS My #$@!# Holiday Sweater"?

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