How to Make Your Own Light-Up Christmas Sweater For the Festive Season

9 Materials
$10
1 Hour
Easy

How many ugly Christmas sweater parties are you invited to this year? Whether you need to make an appearance in-person or on Zoom, follow this tutorial! You’re going to learn how to make your own light-up Christmas sweater so you can make a stand-out appearance at this season’s parties!


There’s no pressure in making a DIY light-up ugly Christmas sweater, because what’s the worst that can happen – it’s ugly?

Tools and materials:

  • An old solid-colored sweater
  • An old solid-colored glittery sweater
  • Pine leaves
  • Pinecones
  • Small Christmas ornaments, baubles, and bows
  • Small red fluffy balls
  • Thick brown pipe cleaners
  • Two strings of battery-powered small Christmas lights
  • Hot glue and glue gun
  • No shame!


DIY light-up Christmas sweater 1 - Christmas tree

Make your own Christmas sweater

1. Arrange pine leaves and cones on a sweater

Using some pine leaves and pinecones that you’ve collected, lay them out on the front of your sweater in whatever pattern you wish. For this tutorial, we’re making a Christmas tree pattern, because that’s a natural choice for a light-up sweater!


Tip: Check the items you’ve gathered from nature, to make sure there are no bugs or other unwanted bits of nature left behind. It’s supposed to be an ugly sweater, not a scary sweater!

Attaching the design with a hot glue gun

2. Glue your design

Once you’ve got your design in place, slide a piece of cardboard inside your sweater so that when you start applying hot glue, you won’t risk accidentally gluing the front of your sweater to the back. Attach all the pieces to your sweater using a hot glue gun.

Gluing the Christmas ornaments to the tree

3. Add Christmas decorations

Think you have your design done? Think again! It’s not nearly ugly enough! Add some more to your design, like the tinsel on the tree in this tutorial. Of course, your Christmas tree sweater needs some tree ornaments. Throw those on too, with a bit more hot glue.

Making creative Christmas sweaters

Don’t forget your tree topper. And while you’re at it, add some joy to your ugly Christmas sweater by scattering around a few small gift decorations.

Decorating a DIY Christmas sweater

Is there still a bit of old sweater showing through? You’d better take care of that. Glue some small decorations, like gold Christmas bows, around the neckline, hem, and wristbands of your sweater.

How to add Christmas lights to a sweater

4. How to add Christmas lights to a sweater

Using a battery-powered string of small lights, start attaching the lights to the back of your sweater. Poke each little light through your sweater from the inside back to the outside.

Make your own ugly Christmas sweater with lig

When all of the lights are attached to the back of your sweater, create a small fabric pocket to hold the battery. Cut a square of fabric large enough to hold the battery pack and hot glue the fabric to the bottom inside the back of your sweater. Now, just insert the battery pack.

DIY lighted Christmas sweater

Add a dab of hot glue to each of the holes you made poking the lights through, to strengthen them and keep them from tearing. The hot glue patches will also keep the lights on the outside of the sweater where they belong.


DIY light-up Christmas sweater 2 – Rudolph the red-nosed reindeer

Make your own Rudolph Christmas sweater

1. Create the reindeer face

Use red fluffy balls and large, thick pieces of brown pipe cleaner to create a reindeer design on the front of a glittery old sweater.

Hot gluing googly eyes and a red nose

Hot glue it all in place and add some googly eyes and a big fluffy ball nose.

How to make creative Christmas sweaters

2. Decorate the reindeer

Not ugly enough? That’s because you forgot to add the ornaments and some baubles to Rudolph’s antlers.

How to make a Christmas sweater light up

3. How to make a Christmas sweater light up

Trim the neckline, hem, and wristbands of your sweater with small bow ornaments, use the same lighting technique as with the Christmas tree to light up the back of the sweater and Rudolph’s antlers.

Light-up ugly Christmas tree sweater

DIY light-up Christmas tree sweater


DIY light-up Rudolph Christmas sweater


How to make your light-up Christmas sweater

How to make your own light-up Christmas sweater tutorial

Fa la la la la! OK, so we’ve called these ugly Christmas sweaters, but you have to admit, really, they are pretty darn cute! And you can probably think of lots more original designs. We can’t wait to see your comments about what you came up with!

Suggested materials:
  • An old solid-colored sweater
  • An old solid-colored glittery sweater
  • Pine leaves
See all materials

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