Ugly Holiday Sweater: A Christmas Story Style


The holidays are full of parties and festivities, but it is almost inevitable that at some point you will either be invited to and/or attend an “Ugly Holiday Sweater” party! Well, I received our invitation just a few weeks ago, and I was ready this year! Idea in hand!

Instead of just buying (or crafting) an ugly sweater, I wanted to take the tacky tradition to a new level by bringing the famous leg lamp that Ralphie, his brother, and most certainly his father were obsessed with in A Christmas Story. It has always been one of my favorite Christmas movies, along with The Nutcracker ballet.  My friend Rivers grew up across the street from me, and it was our annual tradition to somehow fit in both movies at some point over the holiday break! I think those little boys seemed relatable to our brothers at the time…ya, know!…doing things like sticking their tongues to things that were frozen….shooting out streetlights with firecrackers….getting 4-wheelers stuck in the mud! Oh my gosh I’m cracking up at the memories!

Anyway, that movie really brings back some great memories, but I love a little , and I do believe that means I owe it a little homage, right?! That leg lamp makes the best White Elephant gift!!!!

Leg Lamp  /  A Christmas Story Blu Ray

There was a short season while I was working at Neiman Marcus several years back where patterned pantyhose and tights were a trend! Naturally, I probably owned at least five different pairs…haha! After all, I worked in the Women’s Shoes buying offices! And what better way to show off those shoes than with a great pair of pantyhose?! But there was one pair that in its own way resembled fish nets on a more graphic, large pattern scale. They were my favorite! And between my love for the movie and those hose, that was the inspiration for this costume!

If you don’t like to DIY your life, there is always the cheating route as there is a lampshade costume that exists.


Leg Lamp Costume

But I love a little crafting challenge so I set my mind to it that I was going to make this costume!

Now, you are probably wondering how you would ever get a lampshade large enough to fit? Well, I have your answer! I found this basic one at the At Home store for $14.99. It had a round drum, but I was able to bend it to be more of an oval shape in order for it to fit over my hips. This is definitely a piece of this costume that I might buy in person (Walmart and Target would have a decent variety, too!) because you would hate to show up to the party in a micro-mini lamp shade skirt! Haha!

Then I bought some black fringe…..totally necessary for that nice “boudoir” touch!


Black Fringe Trim

I added a little hot glue and voila!


Hot Glue Gun  /   Glue Sticks   /   Scissors

My lampshade skirt was done….well, almost! The metal support frame was still there, but thankfully I have my own Chip Gaines at my house…my cute hubby!

He used bolt cutters, and nipped the frame out…took two seconds. Then he filed the metal down so it wouldn’t stick me. BUT you could also cover them with a cotton ball and a little white athletic tape or masking tape.

Bolt Cutter  /  Metal File Tool

Now, obviously you need something to wear under the lampshade so I just wore a black tennis skirt, but black athletic shorts would work, too! I also picked up a black turtleneck as my top and black suspenders to keep it up!….leaving the lamp shade as the focal point! Add a great pair of fish net tights and black pumps, and you have a costume!


Black Turtleneck  /  Suspenders  /  Fishnet Tights

And here is how it turned out!! I cannot wait to go to our Ugly Christmas Sweater Party!!

Now, for my husband! This is actually from a few years ago, but it was pretty amazing!! While I don’t have pictures for a step by step, it is pretty easy and straight forward! First, we found a green turtleneck (you could use white or red, too!). Then I found some flocked tinsel garland, some safety pins, and a battery operated strand of LED lights! I safety-pinned the garland in the shape of a Christmas tree on the front of the turtleneck. Then I took the battery operated lights and wrapped the battery box to look like a present! Next, I hot-glued the present to just below my tinsel tree and “strung” the LED lights through the tree! It was so fun and the tree was illuminated all night!



Mens Red Turtleneck  /  LED Small Lights  /  Tinsel Garland

And in case you are wanting just a good old traditional ugly sweater, I have you covered! Here are some great options for her!

The Ugly Pug  /  The Elf  /  The Reindeer

The Christmas Dress  /  The Nutcracker

Here are some great options for him!

The Gnome  /  The Leg Lamp  /  The Christmas Tree

Merry Chrithmith  /   Dabbing Santa

Please feel free to ask any questions about this DIY costume, and please send us your best Ugly Sweater images!! We would love to see what you come up with!!

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