Posted on

Is it true that ‘Bridget Jones’ started the Ugly Christmas Sweater craze? Here’s the backstory of Darcy’s jumper.

Some anthropologists might point to Colin Firth’s performance as stuffy lawyer Mark Darcy in 2001’s Bridget Jones’ Diary as the start of the Ugly Christmas Sweater fad that sweeps the country every Christmas season.

Come late November into December the ugly woolen clothing is all over the big screen. But the funny reindeer on the gloomy Darcy remains the trend setter.

The sweater has a flashback appearance in this year’s Bridget Jones’ Baby, the third installment in the series starring Renee Zellweger as the title character.

Sharon Maguire, the director of all three films in the trilogy, says there were a lot of debates about the initial, cosmically-bad sweater choice for the pivotal scene in which Bridget meets Darcy at a party.

“The original sweater went through many designs because it had to be just right. The character of Mr. Darcy is a constipated English prig when we first meet him so we needed something totally ridiculous to pierce that pomposity. And for some reason neither Santas nor X-mas trees nor snowmen worked as well as that red-nosed moose or reindeer we chose. It also had to look home-knit, something his mother knitted for him.”

Even the moose or reindeer or whatever was a serious, or perhaps semi-serious, topic of conversation.

“First versions of the moose were too small and too subtle. The moose eyes weren’t dopey enough. The horns weren’t large or waggly enough either. It also had to work for the camera. It’s a reveal, so the top of sweater had to be plain and make Darcy look kinda cool on Bridget’s first appearance. Although it’s impossible to look cool in a turtleneck sweater when you’re over 17 and not a model.”

Thank’s for that image. Look what you began in movies with Christmas sweaters everywhere, Sharon, Colin, and Mark Darcy! It had to be brought back in the third film, of course “because it serves as a constant reminder to Darcy that Bridget means ‘home.’ They’ve known one other since they were youngsters and she raced around his paddling pool naked.’ “Maguire explains.

“It was also a reminder of the third film’s theme, which was that love cannot be rationalized. People don’t always match on paper, and love is insane, foolish, and irrational, yet love legislates for itself “Maguire explains.

Posted on

The ugly Christmas sweater: an origin story

They are ostentatious. They are obnoxious. They irritate your eyes. They’re ugly Christmas sweaters.

Millions of hilarious Christmas sweaters scavenged from grandpa’s wardrobes and brazenly worn to one of those tacky Christmas parties hosted throughout the month of December. But have you ever pondered what triggered this strange trend? Even high-end stores have their own version of the ugly Christmas sweater.

So, what exactly constitutes an ugly Christmas sweater? To begin with, an ugly Christmas sweater is any sweater with a Christmas theme that is considered in poor taste, tacky, or gaudy. The more decorations (or, depending on who you ask, the better themed), the better. Reindeers? Santa? Blinking ornaments on Christmas trees? A menorah that lights up? Yoda on a Star Wars Christmas tree? All of these cheesy elements point to the winner of the prize for the best ugly Christmas sweater at gatherings. Yes, there are several ugly Christmas sweater parties. In reality, it is entirely a millennial phenomenon.

OFFICIAL COUNTDOWN TO NATIONAL UGLY SWEATER DAY

-285Days -23Hours -52Minutes -46Seconds

So, where did it all start? It all began in the 1950s.

With the widespread commercialization of Christmas in the 1950s, ugly Christmas sweaters became fashionable. They were originally called as “Jingle Bell Sweaters,” and they included subtle Christmas-themed embellishments. The original ugly Christmas sweaters were never meant to be “ugly,” but rather creative and joyous.

Until the 1980s, when it became popular on television, the style had a minor representation in the media.

Popularization and Deprecation in the 1980s and 1990s

Cliff Huxtable from The Cosby Show was the character who popularized odd sweaters with bizarre designs. By the end of the decade, it was typical for Christmas special show conductors to wear them. The style waned in the 1990s, yet it never vanished. Millennials were now searching through their parents’ wardrobes, trying to locate a color-heavy knit with a Frosty the Snowman face and actual jingle bells attached. It became a cultural craze, fuelled by nostalgia for a more carefree era. They appeared in films (Bridget Jones’ Diary), television series (Modern Family, The Mindy Project, and Community), and on social media. Fandom and sweaters met, and now you can get a Christmas sweater for whichever fandom you want.

 

The Party Begins

Chris Boyd and Jordan Birch founded the inaugural Ugly Christmas Sweater Party in Vancouver in the 2000’s. The concept quickly expanded throughout Canada and the United States, and then around the world. The celebrations grew into enormous affairs, frequently in favor of charitable organizations.

By 2007, ugly Christmas sweater searches on Google had skyrocketed, and the fad had slowly made its way back into the mainstream.

Haute Couture and Celebrities

Various fashion designers produced Christmas sweater collections based on the hideous ones early in the decade. Soon after, retail retailers caught on to the idea, and you can now buy them fresh new instead of rummaging through thrift stores and inherited closets.

Celebrities, TV personalities, and even politicians boarded the train, making it a typical Christmas sight.

Celebrate National Ugly Christmas Sweater Day!

Of course, social media has had a significant influence on this tendency. Young folks began purchasing old knits in order to see who could get the ugliest one. The internet aided in the spread of this fashion till it became global! As a result, we now have a nationwide Ugly Christmas Sweater Day.

That’s correct! There is an official national day for wearing your unflattering sweater. Wear something festive to celebrate National Ugly Christmas Sweater Day on December 21! It’s time to flaunt your Christmas sweater.