Christmas sweaters first became popular during the 1950's and at the time were called "Jingle-Bell Sweaters." Unlike the ugly Christmas sweaters we know today, the designs of these sweaters were decidedly less ugly and over-the-top.
"Ugly" wasn't added to the Christmas sweaters until the 80's, when it started gaining popularity by appearing in TV shows and movies such as the Christmas classic "Natonal Lampoon's Christmas Vacation." This is when the sweaters started becoming more and more outrageous, spreading holiday cheer along the way.
This initial popularity didn't last long however, as it faded from both media and culturally throughout most of the 90's.
Then in 2001, ugly Christmas sweater started their comeback, appearing in the popular movie "Bridget Jones' Diary." This was followed by the first Ugly Christmas Sweater Party held in Vancouver in 2002, cementing the ugly Christmas sweater as the icon of the holidays that we known today.
The popularity of ugly Christmas sweaters grew until it became a national holiday, which is celebrated each month on the third Friday of December. This year it will be celebrated on Decemeber 17th.