Deck the Halls with Gaudy Sweaters
Warm, Fuzzy, and Custom Made
Never one to shy away from a feel-good moment, Coke Zero wanted to help people around the world by making their tacky holiday sweater dreams come true. It’s an admirable cause. So, together with our comrades at Droga5, we set out to create a microsite that would allow users to digitally design a unique sweater and then upload it to social media for praise… or ridicule. The contest would result in 100 winners, who would actually get their designs custom-woven into a wearable gift, wrapped and sent to them. All within two weeks of the contest’s end and just in time to impress at the holiday parties.
Who’s gonna say no to that?
So Bad It’s Awesome
Mission “Oh, Holy Sweater!” was aimed at producing a design tool, manufacturing process, and contest that would help elevate the ugly holiday sweater.
Over two and half weeks after Thanksgiving, 82,200 custom-designed sweaters went head to head in the holiday battle of the century. Our sweater royale saw participation from 90% of the world’s countries and exactly 405,261 votes cast on the top 100 sweaters, enshrining them in the first-ever Ugly Holiday Sweater Hall of Fame.
Ok, there’s no Hall of Fame, but we did partner with Stoll America in NYC’s garment district to craft the sweater pattern templates. Working ’round the clock, we manufactured every bespoke sweater in special-ordered Italian wool (cuz we’re fancy).
Small in Size, Big in Kitsch
In order to facilitate broad compatibility and accessibility for as many Coke Zero and thrift store sweater fans as possible, we waged a more simplified approach. But then we went crazy, and added enough design choices for the competition to feel, well, competitive. We gave the people tons of options. Cut, color, patterns, trim, graphics of santas and polar bears, snowflakes and ninjas. Candy cane narwhals! They are the unicorns of the sea after all.
1,324,405,261 total design possibilities.
A Sweater Battle Royale
Over the duration of two and half weeks after Thanksgiving, 82,200 custom designed sweaters went head to head in the holiday battle of the century. This sweater royale saw participation from 90% of the world’s countries and exactly 405,261 votes cast on the top 100 sweaters, enshrining them in the first ever Sweater Hall of Fame.
We started by partnering with Stoll America in New York City’s garment district. Then crafted the sweater pattern templates, schooled ourselves on how yarn gauge correlates to a pixel and special-ordered wool directly from Italy. Working around the clock we manufactured every custom sweater with specialized packaging, then shipped each to the eager hands of their creators.
O Come All Ye Sweater Lovers
The social updates immediately started flooding in. As did press from major media outlets like Ad Age, Fast Company, Thrillist, Funny or Die, and more.
“The ultimate in tacky winter wear…” – AdAge
“The unholy combinations of joyful junk are seemingly endless…” – Fast Company
“It’s time to put your complete lack of taste to good use, friends!” – Thrillist
“Those godawful sweaters aren’t going to design themselves…” – Thrillist
Our Sweater Generator amassed 44.7 million impressions. People from all over were standing proud and posting pictures of themselves wearing their lovingly crafted, one-of-a-kind sweaters. The envy of all coworkers, neighbors and annoying family members alike. We are so proud to help make a real difference in the world.
Hall of Fame