6 Amazing DIY Ugly Christmas Sweater Ideas (Including 1 for Hanukkah)

Kara S.
by Kara S.
7 Materials
30 Minutes

If you don’t have an ugly Christmas sweater yet, don’t worry! We’ve got you covered with these 6 DIY ugly Christmas sweaters you can make at home. There’s even a Hanukkah-themed sweater and a cute Christmas sweater option for your pet!

Tools and materials:

  • Red, black, and white long-sleeved sweatshirts or sweaters
  • Assorted felt
  • Assorted ornaments, tinsel, and other dollar-store decorations
  • White puffy paint
  • Scissors
  • Hot glue gun
  • Fabric glue
Cutting out leaf shapes in green felt

Ugly Christmas sweater 1 - wreath

Cut out leaf shapes in three shades of green felt.

Attaching the leaves to the sleeves with fabric glue

Use fabric glue to attach the felt leaves onto both sleeves of a white sweater from shoulder to wrist.

Red bow for the DIY ugly Christmas sweater

Add a big red Christmas bow to the top center and you’ve got one ugly Christmas sweater!

Long-sleeves pullover sweater for the DIY

Ugly Christmas sweater 2 - menorah sweater for Hanukkah

Start with a plain black long-sleeved pullover sweatshirt.

Cutting yellow leaf shapes to be flames

Cut leaf shapes from yellow paper and use a hot glue gun to attach them to the sweater across both sleeves and one in the top center. 

DIY menorah sweater for Hanukkah

Glue a long strand of tinsel to the bottom points of each flame, draping the tinsel across your whole sweater. Now wave to your friends to get the full effect of this ugly Hanukkah sweater!

Cutting out a green Christmas tree shape in felt

Ugly Christmas sweater 3 - Xmas tree sweater

Use a plain white long-sleeved pullover sweater as your canvas for this ugly Christmas sweater.

Cut out a small block square and a large green Christmas tree from felt. 

Attach the tree to the sweater with fabric glue

Use fabric glue to attach the tree to the front of the sweater and use the black square as the tree base.

Making little presents to put under the Christmas tree

Now make four small Christmas presents from patterned fleece, pompoms, and scrap fabric.

Gluing the presents to the sweater

Glue the presents to your sweater, under the tree. 

Decorating the Christmas tree on the DIY sweater

Finally, trim the tree using bits of felt, pompoms, cut strings of Christmas lights and glue.

DIY ugly Christmas sweater ideas

That’s a pretty festive ugly Christmas sweater to wear while you’re sipping some eggnog!

Cutting out a large bone shape in felt

Ugly Christmas sweater 4 - festive doggy sweater

Trace and cut a large bone shape from a piece of yellow felt. 

Making a bow out of sparkly green felt

Now cut two leaf shapes from green sparkly felt. Fold the shapes in half and glue the ends together. Hang on – you’ll see where this is going!

Making a cute green bow for a dog

Cut a long thin rectangle from the same green felt and glue the “leaves” to the top of the rectangle.

Cutting the end of the bow

Almost there! Wrap the end of the rectangle around the middle of the “leaves” and trim off the end of the rectangle leaving about 1 inch remaining.

Cute DIY bow tie for a dog

See where I was headed with this? Now wrap the end of the rectangle around the center of the “leaves” and glue it in place. Voila! It was never leaves – it was a bow!

Making a doggy bow tie

Add a couple of ribbon ends to the bow to complete it.

Gluing the felt pieces to the red sweater

Glue the bone, bow, and some small gems to the back of a red hooded sweatshirt.

Making antlers out of brown felt

Now fold a piece of brown felt in half and cut out an antler shape from both layers of felt. Glue the two antlers together so you have one fairly stiff antler.

Make a second antler from the brown felt.

Gluingfaux fur trim to the red hoodie

Add some faux fur trim to the neckline.

Gluing the antlers to the hood of the sweatshirt

Glue the antlers to the hood of the sweatshirt.

How to make an ugly Christmas sweater for your dog

Now you’ve got Rudolph the not-so-red-nosed puppy!

Making a Christmas tree shape out of green tinsel

Ugly Christmas sweater 5 - 3D Christmas tree

Use green tinsel to shape a Christmas tree on the front of a plain red sweater.

Using cardboard to help place the tinsel correctly

Tip: slide a piece of cardboard inside the sweater before gluing the tree onto it. That will give you a firmer surface to press on.

Gluing the tree trunk and gifts to the sweater

Add a brown felt tree trunk and some small gift ornaments under the tree.

Decorating the DIY ugly Christmas tree sweater

Glue on some strings of beads and small ornaments to decorate the tree.

Make an ugly Christmas sweater

Glue green tinsel and ornaments to the sleeve cuffs and you’ve created your fifth ugly Christmas sweater!

How to make a last-minute ugly Christmas sweater

Ugly Christmas sweater 6 - elf on the shelf

This one is also made on the backdrop of a plain red long-sleeved sweatshirt. Start by chalking out a brick pattern on the front of the sweatshirt. 

Drawing white lines to create bricks

Now use white puffy fabric paint to draw the brick lines.

Making a fireplace for the elf

Create a fireplace by cutting out a mantel from two pieces of thick cardboard and gluing the layers together.

Making a fireplace for the DIY ugly Christmas sweater

Cover the top of the fireplace with some wallpaper or wrapping paper that resembles a hearth. Glue a photo of a log fire to the back, so the fire shows in the right spot in the fireplace. 

Gluing the fireplace to the sweater

Add a narrow piece of covered cardboard to the top of the hearth for the mantel, and then glue the whole fireplace to the front of your sweatshirt against the wall.

(I didn't show this part, but use the body of a little elf doll or make a little elf body yourself to stick to the neckline - so your face becomes the elf's!)

Elf on the Shelf DIY ugly Christmas sweater

Decorate the fireplace, add the little Elf on the Shelf on top and you’ve got yourself what might just be the ugliest of ugly Christmas sweaters!

Ugly Christmas sweater ideas

DIY ugly Christmas sweater tutorial

Don’t forget to accessorize your ugly Christmas sweaters with appropriate headwear and footwear to complete your look! Leave a comment to let me know which of these six ugly Christmas sweaters was your favorite!

Suggested materials:
  • Red, black, and white long-sleeved sweatshirts or sweaters
  • Assorted felt
  • Assorted ornaments, tinsel, and other dollar-store decorations
See all materials

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