These 1980s Knitted Sweaters Are So Cringeworthy They’re Actually Awesome

Nowadays, ugly sweaters have become almost an annual phenomenon when winter rolls around – particularly those of the Christmas variety. But while they might be worn ironically in the 21st century, back in the 1980s people actually thought they looked good. Yeah, we’re shocked too. Still, enough time has now passed that many of these cringeworthy knitted monstrosities might be considered awesome – in a completely ironic way, of course.

U.K. TV personality Christopher Biggins was never the most reserved of individuals. Indeed, it’s no surprise to see him decked out in this oddball sleeveless sweater, with the world’s sharpest V-neck. We’re pretty sure that’s one of those hallucinatory toads, too.

Every sweater should have a matching scarf. Right? Well, maybe not. But there’s no denying that wearing this ensemble would make you the coolest kid in town. As long as it was a town that celebrated opposite day, of course.

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This is U.K. TV host Matthew Kelly wearing an oversized children’s sweater. Need we say more? The ’80s was a weird decade, okay?

Sweater accessories were apparently a big deal in the ’80s. We’re not sure how necessary this belt really is, but it at least distracts attention away from that weird rooster design. And the less said about the arm stripes, the better.

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We’ve no idea who was in charge of designing this sweater, but they messed up. Why is the ice cream both inside and outside the sundae glass? Come on, guy; you had one job. Those horrendously baggy sleeves aren’t doing it any favors, either.

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Nothing about this picture makes sense. Why is there a banana on the sweater? Why is there a pineapple in his hand? And what is Christopher Biggins’ fascination with cringeworthy jumpers all about?

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As it turns out, even the simplest sweaters look utterly horrendous. Maybe it’s the clashing colors, the giant yellow teddy bear, or just the model’s interminably creepy smile. Whatever it is, it’s as cringeworthy as they come.

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This is getting ridiculous now; you’d think this catalog could have found a model other than Christopher Biggins. Maybe he just demanded the chance to wear every single sweater on offer? This furry panda does look pretty comfy, though…

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Because what woman doesn’t want a crudely knitted male golfer on their sweater? Whatever the rationalization behind this abomination was, we can’t imagine it selling well in the 21st century.

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Another cringeworthy sweater, another equally cringeworthy matching scarf. Kids generally aren’t known for their sense of style, but even so it seems a bit cruel to inflict this combo on them.

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It’s the most exciting fruit of them all! Or at least, that’s what this sweater would have you believe. We’re not sure anyone’s ever been that enthusiastic over a strawberry, though. Still, you can’t argue with the effort.

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It doesn’t come much more British than this. In fact, we assume that the Union Jack was a prerequisite for wearing this bulldog sweater. Keep in mind, ’80s England was just full of men walking around with flags in their mouths.

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Nothing screams “crazy cat lady” like the demented smile of a woman wearing this sweater. We’re not sure what the dungaree brace stripes are all about, either. Maybe we can bring back ’80s fashion just to confuse people, eh?

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You have to wonder whether any sweaters in the 1980s were genuinely made with adults in mind. This one, for instance, looks like the kind of thing your five-year-old son might wear during Christmas. Sir, please step away from the sweater.

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There’s nothing lamer than a picture of a guitar on your sweater then having it spelled out underneath. Unless you’re still learning your letters. Or using the sweater to play air guitar on it – now that’s cool.

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How many times have you looked at a sweater and thought, “Gee, I really wish this jumper had a picture of someone reading a massive book on it?” In fact, don’t answer that; we’re pretty sure we already know the answer.

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Never mind egg on your sweater – anyone wearing this out in public these days would probably have egg on their face. Then again, this is pretty deep as sweaters go, with its arm decor prompting the age-old question: “Which came first?”

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Nothing says cringeworthy like matching clothes, but these sweaters take it to the next level. Can you imagine seeing a couple walking down the street with one of these on? Well, okay, today it might be totally ironic. But in the ’80s? Yeah, super lame.

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As if the garish clash of pea green and baby pink wasn’t enough, the boastful slogan adorning both sides of this sweater has totally sailed past the point of self-awareness. We’re not even going to ask what’s up with the parrot.

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