Tuesday, December 18, 2012

DIY: The Tacky Christmas Sweater

One out of the four Christmas trees in my living room is currently a little less decorated. For a good cause. We were having our First Annual Tacky Christmas Sweater Day at school. And I was not to be out-tackified.

 I think hubs thought I'd gone mad, as it was approaching bedtime (which is an embarrassing 9 pm) when I started de-garlanding our tree. 

"Why are you taking down the tree?" he asked.  

I responded with a frantic, "I'm not taking down the tree, I'm making a Tacky Christmas Sweater with the tree because tomorrow is Tacky Christmas Sweater Day and I don't have one to wear!"

Nodding his head as if that explained everything (which it would if you knew me), "Oh, okay. I'm going to bed."
My DIY Supplies: sweater: thrifted leopard-print sweater; other stuff: Target: garland, fishnets, tights and random $1 ornaments that didn't make the cut
I don't know what "I'm going to bed" stands for in your house, but in my house it's kind of like a duck-and-cover technique. As in, "I just don't think I'm up for this kind of crazy, I'm callin' it a night."
When you make your own Tacky Sweater, don't let the garland just run freely under the needle as shown above. Show that garland who's boss by holding it in place as the photo below.
Because I had mucho cleaning to do in preparation for hub's big Second Annual Gingerbread House Competition and Work Christmas Party (aka SAGHCWCP), I didn't have much time to spare working on this sweater. Thankfully it was a 15 minute DIY which is nothing short of a Christmas Miracle for this Pokey Little Puppy.
Care to make one of these Tacky Lil Numbers? Easy. Just do the following:
  1. Set your machine to the zigzag stitch. I began with the bottom edge of the cardigan.
  2. It really helps to use your fingers to separate the garland at the middle as you sew. I felt certain that I'd never find a silver pin again in all that silvery garland, so I did not pin that mess down. I just went at it.
  3. Be prepared to vacuum up a lot of garland shreds as the needle tends to chew threw the garland.
  4. Make sure to really back stitch at the beginning and end several times. This will prevent the garland from falling out all day long. I did this and I still lost garland. I felt I was leaving a trail of Christmas where ever I went.
This sweater seemed to be a big hit with the kids and my coworkers. Folks kept dropping by my room all day long saying, "I was told I had to come see The Sweater."
Because my school is full of wonderfully fun folk, I wanted to create some awards for their taking part in our First Annual Tacky Christmas Sweater Day. We met for a hot minute after school to snap a year-book-worthy group photo and pass out these cheesey awards I created on the fly. Because of their NC-17 nature, we waited until the little ones were out of the building.
I paired my tacky sweater with my double pairing of Target tights (guess who has a serious fishnets-over-tights addiction?), my black Anthro belt, a vintage dress, a wee little red bow and a giant hair bow.
It was funny how this total tack-tastic package was like a Double Punch: first the Pow! from the Glittery-Garland-Gawdiness and then the Bam! of the Bizarro Bow Bun. I actually had to demo this hair how-to to about a dozen of my little girls. They were fascinated. Special thanks to Twila Jean for the super simple youtube tutorial!

And there you have it, kids. May the tackiness be with you this holiday season.


  1. Sounds like fun!
    I am definitely trying the fishnets over tights though ;)

  2. I love the idea of the tacky sweater contest,except in my school the elementary teachers seemed to wear their tacky sweaters daily in the weeks before Christmas. I guess they don't need a tacky sweater contest.

    1. Ha! Phyl! Some of our teachers had originally purchased their sweaters back when it was hip to wear them in teacher-land. And I think they took a slight offense to the term "tacky". But c'mon! You are wearing a furry Santa across your chest! That's pretty stinkin' tacky. I think you need to call 'em out on it ;)

  3. Best "tacky Christmas sweater" ever! :D

  4. Loveee it! So.so.much. I hope you have a fantastic Christmas break ahead of you! Today is a half day for me then I'm freeeee.


  5. This is the BEST outfit ever. I am so glad to have SWF like you hahahaha. <3 fabulous!!

    1. Ha! So glad you appreciate my SWF'er'ish'ness. Thanks for the inspiration!

  6. I just wanted to let you know that your blog continues to inspire me. I loved your christmasdress so much, that I made my own Light-up dress! It's awesome, completely weird yet lovely at the same time and I'm going to wear it to the X-mas party at my (normally very offical) work tonight. Thank you so much for the idea, I can't stop grinning when I think about the little twinkling lights in my dress.

    1. OH! You will most definitely be the highLIGHT of the party ;) I MUST see pictures, please share! I hope you have a blast and a wonderful holiday!

  7. "This is just the information I am finding everywhere. Thanks for your blog, I just subscribe your blog. This is a nice blog. " Seasonal Jumpers

  8. This outfit makes me smile so hard my cheeks hurt. I may have to emulate you for the Christmas party I have to attend this weekend. Last year everyone else work black...BLACK!! It looked like a wake.


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