THE BEAUTY IN AN UGLY SWEATER
The View host injects her whimsical personality into a line of Christmas knits
Whoopi Goldberg has been many things: actor, producer, talk show host. But designer has not been among them. This week, however, that changed. On Tuesday, a new line of “ugly Christmas sweaters” designed by Goldberg went on sale at Hudson’s Bay and Lord & Taylor.
Each of the nine variations sells for $139 (U.S.) and is made of mixtures of wool, alpaca, cashmere and cotton.
“We loved Whoopi’s unique and whimsical approach to the traditional kitschy Christmas sweater,” Liz Rodbell, president of the two department stores, wrote in an email.
And the sweaters, according to Goldberg — who attended a handful of New York Fashion Week shows last season, walked/performed in the “Pageant of the People” for the fashion retailer and label Opening Ceremony, and wore a hoodie by the cool-kid label Vetements on The View — are hopefully just the beginning of what may be a fourth (or fifth) career.
When it comes to fashion, as a recent conversation revealed, she has plans.
Why ugly Christmas sweaters?
I’ve always liked them. They make me happy. I’ve worn them for many years.
I thought about all the things I’d love to see on a sweater. Maybe a brown Santa. I have friends who are Jewish and Catholic and married to each other, so I had a big green tree, and I thought, “Well, what would you put on a big green tree if you’re a Jewish kid?” Well, you’d put little menorahs on, you’d put dreidels on.
We have a “What makes the family?” sweater, which is this whole family, and this one guy is green, but you realize he’s their brother. You never know what kind of family is going to come into your door.
Do you think you’ll make sweaters for other holidays?
I don’t know if everybody is as ridiculous as I am. I don’t think anybody is going to get you a Valentine’s Day sweater, because you’re not really going to wear it outside of that one day. Most people will just get you some candy.
What’s the best way to style a Christmas sweater?
Wear some black leggings and a crazy sweater. Men don’t wear leggings, so for them, jeans or something relatively simple, because it’s the sweater that you want people to see.
Who are your dream collaborators?
Anyone who wants to have some fun and do something different. I love watching Jeremy Scott because he collaborates with lots of different people. Rihanna is collaborating with this one and that one.
When you’re looking at the kinds of things people are doing and what’s out there and who they’re reaching out to, I think to myself, “What would that look like if I were doing it?”
We forget that people over 45 have money also, and they want to dress well.
And you want to make it so they look cool in the stuff they’ve got on, as opposed to looking very odd in stuff that’s too young for them. Older folks are out there.
Which designers do you like to wear?
I like all the stuff over at Opening Ceremony. I can’t wear Thom Browne, but I want to wear Thom Browne. Rosie Assoulin, I love how she makes things. I want to wear everybody.
But if I go from a 12 to a 14, I don’t want to feel like your clothes are no good for me. It’s been a while since I was a size 8.
When I go to the sites I sometimes check, I see they’re not looking for me. They’re not carrying my sizes.
I think to assume someone who is a size 14 isn’t stylish is a mistake.
I’d love to design housewares. You shouldn’t be bored by the things in your house.
Whoopi Goldberg, in the dressing room for The View, with a selection of ugly Christmas sweaters she designed. They will go on sale Tuesday.