The Holiday Sweater

By Manolo the Shoeblogger

Manolo says, yes, it is true, the Manolo he has been reading and very much enjoying the blog of the Harriet Miers!!! She is obviously the delightful person, one who could easily be confirmed to join the Posse Manolo on the shopping expedition, if not the Court of the Supremes.

However, the Manolo he only mentions the blog of the Harriet Miers in the passing, because today the Harriet she has brought this website of fashion atrocity to the attention of the Manolo. (This page of the fashion atrocity website, it almost sent the Manolo into the convulsions, as if he were the small Japanese child watching the frenetic episode of the Pokemon.)

Trust the Manolo, the heavily beaded and be-rhinestoned “gem sweater” it is not the look you wish to adopt. And here, because we are approaching the season of the holidays, the subject of the sweaters it deserves the special discussion.

Manolo says, the truly super fantastic girl, she does not wear the holiday sweater. (Nor does the truly super fantastic man.)

See! Even the Mr. Darcy of Your Dreams looks like the dork in the holiday sweater. Think then how much worse you would look in …the Turkey Sweater!

Notice the grimmacey What-the-Hell-I’m-Getting-Paid smile.

Or perhaps you would like to make your own darling child look like the fool with the Mother-Daughter Frosty Scene of Societal Entropy Matching Sweater Set.

This, it is clearly child abuse.

Finally, as the Holloween it is only weeks away, you might wish to don something like this, the “Holloween Friends Cardigan”.

Trust the Manolo, if you wear this and no one tries to stop you, you have no friends.

So, listen to the advice of the Manolo, and make this the season of joy by giving your holiday sweaters to the garbage man.


45 Responses to “The Holiday Sweater”

  1. pickles Says:

    my eyes my EYES!!!!!!!!!!!
    between the model’s over-enthusiasm and her super fantastic pants….i’m left speechless.
    is this another by-product of the 80s fashion trend that i thought had finally passed?

  2. deja pseu Says:

    “Trust the Manolo, if you wear this and no one tries to stop you, you have no friends.”

    Ah, another coffee-sprayed monitor inspired by the Manolo!

  3. Kim Says:


  4. FlyGirl Says:

    These are positively the WORSE sweaters that I have ever seen.

    But there is an evil side of me that thinks that they would make a perfect gift for some of those not so dear and loving family members.

  5. Kevin Says:

    The only thing worse than holiday sweaters is holiday sweaters with matching socks.

  6. Your Granny Says:

    Should we try to rescue the sweater model in gold pants? Or punish her?

    It’s not clear if she was pilloried in this photo shoot, or if she’s overdue for a whippin’.

    Sadly, if I went out in one of those sweaters, my darling friends would take phone pictures and send them around. Now that I think of it, it might be phone to photoshop some of my nearest and dearest into the Antler Dance sweater.

  7. VeddyVeddyBadAng Says:

    Those sweaters are only suitable for sweet little grandmothers who don’t know any better. Unfortunately, though, I have some teacher friends that say they wear the holiday-themed sweaters because their young students like them. (Sounds like corporal punishment to me). I bet those kids are lying to her so they can get an A.

  8. Esther Says:

    Those sweaters make me want to crawl in a corner, and weep copiously.

  9. The Scarlett Says:

    Ah … The Scarlett’s very own darling husband was once-upon-a-time married to a wearer of holiday sweaters. Needless to say, he came to his senses.

    PS. One cannot possibly imagine the evil glee experienced by The Scarlett upon personally witnessing the fashion abomination upon the frame of the ex. You’re right, Manolo, no friends indeed!

  10. Kristin Says:

    Noooo, not Mr. Darcy!!! That hurts.

  11. JayKay Says:

    I am in hysterics over here!
    I second Deja Pseu’s comment about “another coffee-sprayed monitor”.
    Cheers, Manolo. Well done!

  12. Lizzie Says:

    It is, alas, true that elementary school teachers are much given to wearing holiday sweaters. Also holiday jewelry. My sister, who teaches third grade, owns many samples of both.

  13. Camera Obscura Says:

    The Manolo has reminded the Camera just exactly why she decided never to watch all of Bridget Jones after she surfed into that part of it once by accident. What a waste.

    Apparently Leslie’s education at the School of the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston was a waste of her parents’ money.

  14. Imelda Blahnik Says:

    Hmmm, I think the joke may be on us. In fact, I think that Leslie, the collector and model of the sweaters of gems, may be in actual fact the superfantastic girl. I am quite serious. If you go up to the main page of the site, you can read press on her sweater collection, her r.v., her band (Leslie and the Lys) and download clips of her music.

    Yes indeed – shocking as it may seem at first, I belive this Leslie she is the superfantastic girl. I am seriously considering going to see her band when the play in Worcester, Mass, in several weeks.

  15. Imelda Blahnik Says:

    Postscript: my praise of Ms. Leslie Hall as the superfantastic girl is in no way an endorsement of the sweater of the holiday.

  16. Gidget Bananas Says:

    I concur with the Imelda Blahnik that the Leslie Hall is wearing the sweaters ironically. I wonder, did the Harriet Miers get the joke?

  17. Sniper Says:

    Ms. Leslie Hall is not only the model, but also the artist.

  18. Diva Leigh Says:

    The Diva Leigh finds that the only thing more unattractive than the holiday sweater is its ugly cousin, the holiday sweatshirt. There is nothing that says “I am completely bereft of both good taste and good sense” more than an orange sweatshirt with a Halloween scene or a red sweatshirt with a big Christmas tree tacked onto it.

  19. Kourtney Says:

    Someone pry the BeJeweler out of her grasp!
    While it is entirely possible that the sweater model & creator is the superfantastic girl, I am somewhat dubious. Her posture, it does not bespeak the fabulous, nor does her lack of smile. As well, the sweaters would only be ironic if she was wearing the most sublime of shoes, and since we cannot see her feets, we cannot vouch for the irony. I shall not mention the pants, the screaming pants of horror, the pants of badness.*
    *Admission – Part of me really, really loves the sweaters.

  20. The Canadienne Says:

    The Canadienne, she hates these horrifying holiday sweaters. But even the horrible reindeer sweatshirt cannot disguise the true magnificence of the Colin Firth!

  21. desertwind Says:

    Teachers of the elementary school are not Truly Worldly and, therefore, must be given special dispensation.

  22. desertwind Says:

    The desertwind just checked out more of the Leslie Hall’s site. A true post-modern Art Goddess!!!! I think her paintings are the real deal.

    Those sweaters must be an homage to her Roots in The Midwest.

  23. Leda Horticulture Says:

    Oooh, a couple of fun new seasonal sweaters I think we really need to see: the Bird Flu Season sweater, a fluffy gray cardigan generously embellished with beaded dead chickens, dripping rhinestone mucas, sparkling hypodermic needles, sequined vitamin C tablets, antibiotic buttons, miniature rubbery hot water bottles, a jewelled thermometer reading 107 F, and quaint little pockets that hold used Kleenexes. And how about the Tax Season sweater? a somber black turtleneck gaily festooned with tiny satin W-2s, 1040’s, Schedule C’s, audit requests, subpoenas, aspirins for buttons, and a lifesize 3-D noose sewn down the back!

  24. Annalucia Says:

    Leda Horticulture (and the Annalucia greatly admires your nom d’ecran, are you a fan of the Dorothy Parker?), well, she has not been to the Target lately but she would not be surprised to see the Tax Sweater, or something very like it, already on the shelves. The Bird Flu Sweater would require a skilled knitter whose artistic sense was closely akin to that of Mr. Edward Gorey as well as to that of Mr. Hieronymus Bosch, and it is a fond hope of the Annalucia that no such person actually exist.

  25. zippy Says:

    The zippy took the Manolos’ advice before she knew who he was. She tossed the Christmas sweater after she lost 80 pounds, retired from a 35 year career, and realized she deserved zippier clothes! (pun intended…)

  26. enygma Says:

    What I want to know is where do people buy these sweaters? I swear, pre-college, I had at least one teacher in every grade level wearing these kinds of sweaters. Since then, I have vowed to never be that teacher.

  27. willow Says:


    my mother wears stuff like this.

    ::runs out of room::

  28. Donna B Says:

    I would wear the Halloween one! Even though I wouldn’t be super fantastic that day, some of the designs are very cheerful, especially when I am alone.

    Also, I hope the Manolo doesn’t mind beaded vintage purses, because I think they are beautiful, and the weight and coolness of the beads, whether metal or glass, is sensual and gratifying. (the plastic ones, not so much.) I’ve also seen a couple of vintage beaded sweaters that are really striking, even though they are heavy from the glass beads. Some are rather like quilts in the artist’s choices of color, designs, and always hand sewing.

    Perhaps the sweater and the purse not worn together.

  29. katie Says:

    You know the mother model and child model were talking while that picture was taken.

    Child: How could you do this to me? Don’t you love me? I miss Daddy. Is he ever coming home?
    Mother: My love is implied. Daddy is never coming back. Smile more!

  30. Jezzy Says:

    Truly terrible. But how I love Mr Darcy. *drools*

  31. shmarollynn Says:

    Sweetie, even if Mr. Darcy looks like a dork in that sweater, he’s still a hot dork.

  32. Coleen Says:

    The Hussified’s Grandmother, she indeed owns the holiday sweater collection for all of the holidays on the Julian calendar. Including, to the Hussified’s eternal shame, a sweater of the Halloween in the VEST design. The Hussified has tried for many of the years to convince the Grandmother that this is not the fashion, but Grandmom is the stubborn biddy and will not be swayed. Viva la Bad Fashioned Grandmom!

  33. Lori Says:

    I used to have a winter scene cardigan. I bought it when I was going through a hard time.

  34. beth Says:

    My mother in law (a retired teacher) owns many holiday sweaters and vests. She drags them out when seasonally appropriate.

    As I can’t stand the woman I never fail to compliment her holiday festivenss in attire. (Oh the irony…)

    As for Mr. Darcy… as a true lover of all things Colin Firth and Bridget Jones, we know that Mr. Darcy’s evil mother is the supplier of these holiday jumpers and he abhors them yet is the faithful and loving son who indulges his poor, tasteless mother.

  35. Laura K Says:

    Manolo, I sincerely doubt that is Harriet Miers’s actual blog. She can’t possibly that stupid. She has a Law degree, right? I think it is someone trying to be funny. You know how you have generously posted a disclaimer stating that you are not Manolo Blahnik? Well, this person needs to admit that he or she is not actually Harriet Miers. This has got be illegal. Just look at the grammar on the masthead – don’t even get into the posts. Generally we learn when to use “you’re and your” in fourth grade. Please look into this, Manolo, and expose this fraud!

  36. Muffy Wong Says:

    If anything these sweaters make Thanksgiving and the Holidays with the fiance’s family SO much less painful.

  37. Sonja Says:

    Almost as bad as HSN’s Storybook Knits.

  38. meep Says:

    willow, I feel your pain. My mother has been wearing holiday sweaters for some time. She’s got a halloween one (which she also wears to Clemson games) and quite a few Christmas ones. I think she buys them at the mall the day after Christmas, when they’re marked down 80%.

  39. Tia Nieve Says:

    The Tia Nieve, she has often raised her impeccably threaded eyebrows at the beaded sweaters of the Holidays, but after visiting the site of the Leslie Hall, the Tia recognizes True Art when she sees it.

    The Tia encourages the Leda Horticulture to bring the Bird Flu sweater and the Tax Season sweater to magnificent reality. Perhaps the Leslie Hall can collaborate with the Leda.

  40. pdotfu Says:

    But but, its so much FUN to knit terrifying sweaters. My children and I used to consider one a success if we could imagine it creeping out from underneath the sofa at night to attack.
    Nowdays I knit them classical designs of great rectitude.

  41. Kimberly Says:

    Last Christmas, I attended a holiday luncheon in a beautiful remodeled Victorian inn in the small, rural/suburban South Carolina town in which I attended high school.

    I looked around the room at one point (there were about three tables per room) and realized I was the only woman above the age of 21 in the room who was NOT wearing a Christmas-themed sweater.

    Thank God I moved to Philadelphia.

  42. Spirophita Says:

    I can personally vouch for the Midwest appeal of the holiday sweatshirt. I can’t count on two hands how many holiday sweatshirts I had to pretend I liked and wear as a child. And to make matters worse, there were the red/brown reindeer headbands, the christmas-light earrings, the christmas bell necklace, christmas glittery nail polish, and matching Christmas-tree-covered socks. Not only was it poor style, it was sensory overload.

    I bet this poor child gets beaten up at school.

  43. jrochest Says:

    Yes, it’s ironic. You can tell by the design of the main page. I think that Leslie Hall is to beaded sweaters what James Lileks is to bad food and 1960’s interior design.

    And I really, really want to know where she found the glasses and the pants.

  44. ginny Says:

    The supervisor of the ginny has probably already purchased most of the hats of the blinking light antlers, thus saving many children from the beatings of the bullies. She believes the supervisor is giving them to older relations, who are expected to fend off attacks.

    It is the ginny’s belief that her supervisor ordered everything out of the catalog of the trading orientals, and that once again the ginny and her poor cow-orkers may look forward to yet another Christmas coffee mug of the simpering horror. Or perhaps the horror of the blinking antlers is to be visited upon them all, like the eleventh plague of the Egypts.

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