A couple of weeks ago I noticed not one, but two rails of rather worrying tops in my local Beyond Retro. The tasteless bright red and green jumpers and sweats were decorated with tacky festive graphics, Christmas themed applique and embroidery, and Nordic inspired intarsias and fair isles. They were the jumpers loved by by the tv presenters of my childhood, who played the guitar in a rocking chair, in a fake log cabin in Shepherd Bush.
The Val Doonican/Andy Williams Christmas special was quite an event in the 70’s and the Christmas sweater represented a kind of American inspired Yule tide glamour, that we snow free Brits could never hope to achieve! The ‘holiday sweater’ was an aspiration we could only dream of.
Fast forward to the 80’s and the Christmas jumper had well and truly caught on, as Gyles Brandreth brought hand knitting to the masses on GMTV and made it mainstream! The festive sweater was no longer a thing of mysterious beauty and was on a par with knitting your own toilet roll holders and wearing sweatshirts displaying pictures of your pet!
But the fickle finger of fashion has declared the Christmas jumper is hip again and it has been adopted by the young and fashionable and taken to another level of ironic coolness. While out and about in Shoredtich this week, one could hardly move without bumping into a group of socially networking/digital/creatives, on their Christmas nights out – all wearing – yes you’ve guessed it – Christmas sweaters!
So if you have one lurking at the back of your wardrobe, drag it out and wear it on Christmas day. Your family will either declare you super cool or completely insane! Or better still, get each member of your family one. I actually quite like these bad boys from Top Shop!
Now everyone sing along ♫ We’re driving home for Christmas……………………………….♫