DIY Ugly Christmas Sweater

‘Tis the season to pull out your great Grandmother’s hand-knitted sweater vest from the ’50s, put some tinsel in your hair, and party your reindeer socks off.

But, are you looking for something more than your sweater hand-me-down this year? Do you want to put a personal touch on your ugly sweater this season? Well, look no further, you filthy animals, I’ve got the information you need right here!


First and foremost you need to know what kind of ugly sweater you want to rock at your holiday parties. My PIC (partner in crime), Kacia, and I decided we were going to go for “cute and just a little obnoxious” — just like us. 😉

Next, brainstorm what you want on your sweater before heading to the store. That way you won’t lose precious crafting time trying to decide in the aisles.

Kacia’s Theme: a brilliant design of a reindeer throwing up Christmas decorations

My Theme: silly kittens in a holiday mess

Kacia and I ready to start crafting!

When you hear “ugly sweater” you obviously think it has to be a sweater. The beauty of creating your own is that you can use anything you want! So, we picked up some rocking plain turtle necks. You can make an ugly turtle neck (like we’re making) or a t-shirt, vest, etc. The world is your oyster and there are no rules. Actually, there is one rule: keep your sweater on.

For decor, we decided to cut our designs out of felt (yay, no sewing!), red and green buttons, candy cane buttons, jingle bells, Christmas bows, and battery-powered Christmas lights to give our ‘sweaters’ something special!


IMPORTANT: Don’t forget the hot glue gun; you don’t want anything to fall off your masterpiece!

POLYWOOD DIY Ugly Christmas Sweater Hot Gluing

We traced our reindeer and cats, cut them out, and hot glued googly eyes on them. We used a permanent marker to draw in facial expressions, etc.

UglySweater_2 UglySweater_5

Then we laid everything out on the shirts before we glued it onto the sweater.


We had some help with my crazy dogs (Tilly and Apollo). They just wanted to be in the fun too — such curious creatures.


After we planned and cut out our designs, it was as easy as gluing everything on and making it look as ugly as possible–while still keeping the cute factor.

TIP: We found it easier to hot glue some elements on while actually wearing the shirts. Be sure to put something inside the shirt when you are hot gluing so you don’t accidentally glue the shirt to yourself! We used a piece from an old box that was lying around.


Once the glue has dried and you are satisfied with your ugly sweater, it’s time to put them on, flip on the lights, and blow everyone away at your next holiday party.

You’ll be the coolest Who in Whoville. Happy crafting!



Blog Post Updated March 9, 2021

3 thoughts on “DIY Ugly Christmas Sweater

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *