It’s probably one of the most commonly asked questions this holiday season. And we’re here to give the answer to “How do I make a Christmas sweater” in detail. It’s really fun when family and friends get together to make their own ugly xmas sweaters before their holiday parties. DIY Chrismtas sweaters let your imagination run wild!

See us make one right here…

We’ll give you some pointers throughout this article. You can also click on the links throughout to get more details on specific do it yourself items. Fifteen DIY Christmas sweaters are featured below for your enjoyment -you can learn how to make a Christmas sweater right here!

Enhancing your Motif

So you’ve chosen a theme? Great. Now let’s work a little more with what you’d like to show the party. Again referencing our example snowman and tree motif, we’ll need to think about what is happening around all the snowmen.

Personally, I don’t think there is any better way to assist with a snowman feature than a snow storm itself. Over the years I’d like to think that I’ve been able to master the snowstorm effect, and here’s how to do it.

  1. Gather some large felt or foam snowflakes.
  2. Gather some smaller, sequence style snowflakes.
  3. Visualize a path for the larger snowflakes, and glue them in place.
  4. Surround the larger flakes with the smaller ones.

Create a path for your snow and stick to it.

Visualize the path and border in which your snow will fall. Start small and grow it wide for a hilarious classy snowstorm effect.

You can let the snowstorm go in front or behind the other ornaments or lights on the sweater, this is up to you. I always prefer to have them run behind the accents, but continue growing along a path. This will reduce the potential “noise” associated with the sweater. It’s always nice to be able to differentiate between different items on a handmade Christmas sweater.

Filling Large, Empty Spaces

There is a lot of space on a sweater to fill with ugly and tacky items. The more intricate your motif, the longer you may spend on certain areas of the sweater. For example, placing individual snowflakes all over the front of a sweater can be very time consuming. Now you have a smashing and detailed design but you’ve pretty much had enough of it and want to complete the sweater with some larger, easier items. Personally, I am a huge fan of stockings, Santa hats, felt trees and other large ornaments to complete the design of a self-made Christmas sweater.

How to Make a Christmas Sweater

Stockings can fill a lot of space with minimal effort on your sweater.

Just like with the inverted Santa hat, you can make almost any stocking a beverage holder. Depending on the width of the stocking top, you may or may not need to glue in along the side. This is what I could classify as a cheesy Christmas Sweater.

Stockings also add a really nice touch to a sweater, and can take up a large portion of unused space in one application. You will most certainly need to glue about six inches down, all the way across the stocking on the inside so that your bottle doesn’t slide all the way down.

One of my top picks is always the felt Christmas tree. You could use any other fabric that you have laying around instead of purchasing felt; I’ve just worked with it for a while so it’s my fabric of choice. For this holiday season, I have prepared a specific video tutorial for how to make a light up felt Christmas tree, you can watch it here.

Santa hats take up a lot of space. A certain bonus with a Santa hat is that you can always slice it along the seam and make two. If not sliced, a hilarious Santa hat can be inverted to make a Christmas bikini bottom that doubles as a drink holder. To make a drink holder out of your inverted Santa hat, just put in an empty bottle and glue in all around the left and the right. It doesn’t need to be too snug, just enough so that the bottle or can won’t fall forwards out of it. Now remove the empty bottle or can once the glue has dried; now it’s ready to hold any beverage you see fit.

Getting your Gear Ready

Here’s what you will typically need to create your own ugly holiday sweater in checklist form:

  • A work-space (desktop, kitchen table etc.)
  • Adhesive (hot glue preferred, super glue can work)
  • Scissors (strong enough to cut fabric)
  • Lint Roller (optional, but excellent for rolling away excess glue)
  • A felt marker (optional, great for marking light holes or outlines)
  • Ornaments (to apply to the sweater)
  • Light Kit (optional, if a light up Christmas sweater is desired) >
  • Extra fabric (optional, draw and cut shapes to fill out the sweater)
  • A sweater or vest (this is your canvas)

Hand Made Christmas Sweater

Choosing the Right Sweater

It’s important to consider the right type of sweater or vest to get started with. It should fit a little loose when you’re wearing it. The reason for this is because once you have hot glued or super glued ornaments on, it will inevitably fit tighter. This is most important when you’re adding a light kit or anything that is glued around the perimeter of the sweater.

Once you’ve used hot glue to create your hilarious sweater it will definitely not be machine washable. This is not usually an issue because these items are typically only worn once or twice a year; spot washing and line drying works just fine for these.

Choose a Sweater

Creating your Hand Made Sweater Motif

If you want to get a little more motivated and purchase some DIY items for your sweater, you will be able to choose a theme or motif very easily. In the example below, we have created a snowman in snowstorm motif with a light up Christmas tree attached to add some ugly to the equation. Here we have an assortment of snowmen all sectioned off in to one lower right quadrant of the sweater.

The great thing about making your own Christmas Sweater is that it’s really hard to go wrong. They are supposed to be ugly sweaters and that’s not a hard thing to accomplish. If you’ve got a limited budget and only one selection of ornaments to choose from, you will have to do the best with what you have. Hot glue keeps them all in place.

DIY Christmas Sweaters

Here we have cut out a quilt block, and it covers the entire front of the sweater.

If you can’t find an appropriate quilt block, or don’t want to ruin a tacky Christmas quilt, just head down to your local fabric store. During the holiday season, most fabric stores have a plentiful selection of hilarious Christmas quilting fabric.

I’ve been taking a look at my analytics and it seems to me that many of this website’s off-season visitors are trying to learn how to make an ugly Christmas sweater by themselves. If you want to do it yourself, all it takes is time, money and a little creativity. The good news is that you can skip the money part if you have some old Christmas decorations kicking around. If you’ve got those, all you’ll need to get next is a glue gun, a sweater, and Bob’s your uncle.

Here’s where the creativity comes in to play. You will stare at an abyss of decorations set on your coffee table and start asking yourself “Just how am I going to make this Christmas sweater?” If you’re looking for something ugly, think contrast. The noisier the sweater, the uglier it is. Should you wish your sweater to be more on the tacky side, consider something that will look more authentic… something that perhaps once upon a time was stylish and actually in demand. Cheesy is one of my personal favourites. To make these Christmas sweaters you’ll have to think a little outside the box and start incorporating things like reindeer prancing across LED lit trees with stars glistening around them.

Anyone can make a Christmas Sweater, and spin it any way they desire. A trip to the local general store that sells hilarious seasonal goods will be able to provide you with all the decorations you’ll need to make one of these bad boys. Just be careful with those glue guns – my ravaged fingertips are evidence of their power.

Today we’ll be taking a look at what we like to call “The Kitchen Sink”. There really isn’t much you won’t find on this Christmas monstrosity. We’ll start stage left in the top right corner where we’ll find a classy white snowflake. It has both thick and thin flake edges, because, as we all know, no two snowflakes are the same. Just beside classy snowflake you will find another, smaller and completely different one with no background at all. Make sense to you? It shouldn’t.

As we move down this hilarious Christmas sweater we see a reindeer howling at the falling snowflakes with a red background. The reindeer has a very artistic flare as you will see both white and red antlers and a white stitched border all around it. As we move further stage right we’ll find an elegant row of white snowflakes with a classic black background and more white stitched borders. Above this lovely row of classy snowflakes sits a Christmas tree in pot, with red accents along the ends of the branches.

Moving further down this sweater, we find stunning details among yet another four snowflakes. The somewhat match the design of the upper portion of the sweater, but not entirely as the black background snowflakes have no white stitching along the border, but the grey one does. What we find most hilarious about this vintage and tacky Christmas sweater is the complete disregard for coordination and style. An abstract kerfuffle of grays, reds, greens, blacks and browns make this hilarious Christmas sweater one for the books.