Tacky Christmas Party Ideas : Ugly Sweater Party

It’s no secret that I love any excuse to party…we’re even known to have what has affectionately become known as “fake parties” here in our house just so I can have an excuse to set up something cute. HA! When Ashley mentioned getting a few girls from school together I immediately thought “PARTY!” but coming up with a fun Christmas party idea for teen girls can get to be a little tricky.  I finally settled on some tacky Christmas Party ideas and a “Make Your Own Ugly Sweater Party” was a perfect fit for these fun, creative girls. I had too much fun putting it all together.  Affiliate links are included in this post.

tacky christmas party ideas

Ugly Sweater Party Food Ideas

Food is most important for any party…but especially for teens!  The food table was a mix of salty and sweet with cupcakes, cookies, chips, donut hole snowballs and a vegetable platter in the shape of a Christmas tree (I had to feel a little bit healthy).  It was all easy to pull together and perfect finger food for the girls.  

Christmas party idea

Ugly sweater party ideas

I have definitely learned over the years, that while I might be impressed with fun fancy food at parties, kids and teens could care less.  So while this food was “themed” if you will, it was also mostly store bought and super easy to put together.  

Ugly sweater party ideas

Ugly Sweater Party Decoration Ideas

I wanted to make sure and stick with tacky Christmas party ideas, so plaid on plaid with stripes, polka dots and buffalo check thrown in for good measure was the decor for this Ugly Sweater Christmas party.  While you want your decor to be thematic, there is also a difference between being cute tacky, and just tacky.  Aim for cute tacky. 😉 

Ugly sweater party food ideas

I chose to mainly stay with a black, red and white color scheme, with a little green and gold thrown in for good measure.  Sticking with the three main colors helps all those patterns not look quite so crazy together.  I mixed this set of paper fans and this one to create the backdrop. (I ordered two of each set) Red poinsettias that I had already bought for our regular Christmas decor and mini pine trees helped add height and color as well as fill empty spaces on the table. 

Ugly sweater Christmas party idea

Ugly sweater party ideas

I found some buffalo check fabric in white and black, red and black, and green and black and used it to wrap around the mini pine trees as well as the drink bottles.  I like to use these bottles for all of my parties.  I dress them up for all different occasions and they are disposable which is a major plus for clean up!  I used contrasting ribbon on the bottles to make them even a little wilder. The gold striped paper straws were the perfect finishing touch.

tacky christmas party ideas

Ugly Christmas Sweater Party Activity Ideas

Rather than have the girls wear ugly Christmas sweaters to the party, the main activity was to MAKE ugly Christmas sweaters. 

Ugly Christmas sweater party ideas

I found these plain red sweatshirts for each of the girls. 

I had an assortment of the following on hand for the girls to choose from to adorn their sweatshirts:

pom poms


alphabet iron-ons

Christmas themed iron-ons

fabric paint

fabric markers

fabric flowers



Ugly Christmas sweater party ideas

It turned out to be something that kept them busy for a LONG time and it was super fun to see each of their personalities come out in the sweaters they made. 

Ugly Christmas sweater party ideas

Ugly Christmas sweater party ideas

We used fabric glue to adhere most of the items to the ugly Christmas sweaters, so while that dried the girls chatted and decorated ugly Christmas sweater cookies.  Trader Joe’s sells kits that are fun and easy and matched the theme perfectly. 

It was such a fun afternoon and the girls wear their sweaters too, which is an added bonus.  I hope these tacky Christmas party ideas have you excited to throw your own Ugly Sweater Christmas party!

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I hope you are feeling inspired to create your own Ugly Sweater Party this Christmas with these tips and ideas.  I’d love to see what you create! 

We have TONS of fun DIY party ideas on the site.  Visit our Party Gallery here to see them all.  Here are a few of our favorites:


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Happy Entertaining!



Creative Director at Pink Peppermint Design
Tammy Mitchell is the founder and creative director of lifestyle blog pinkpeppermintdesign.com. Along with being a homeschooling mom of two kiddos, she is also an in-demand prop and event stylist, photographer, interior and graphic designer. On Pink Peppermint Design, she shares creative DIY projects, easy entertaining and gift ideas, inspiring interiors and events. She lives in Southern California, with her husband and two children.

Ugly sweater party food ideas

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