We've seen no end to themed holiday sweaters this year, with marketers such as Green Giant, PetSmart, Orbit Gum and KFC getting super-creative with their festive knitwear. However, this is the first holiday sweater effort we've seen that really seems to lean into the spirit of 2021.
In Ontario, Canada (as in several European countries now), people now have to show proof of Covid-19 vaccination to get into restaurants, bars and pubs. On top of showing their actual vaccination records, they can also download a QR code as proof. So Toronto agency The Hive came up with a way of displaying a QR code on your holiday sweater. The knitwear, which can be ordered by visiting UglySweaterPassport.com and following the instructions, features the wearer’s vaccination status, which is displayed as a QR code cleverly incorporated into the sweater design. While they are not actual legal proof of vaccination, it's a fun way of getting behind the vaccine effort.
The sweaters are also being given to all The Hive’s employees and to any of their clients who wish to receive one. While they are already sold out on the website, the agency will be giving away a number next week to people who have joined the waitlist. Local influencers and news media are also getting some.
“The vaccine code is so cold and government-y,” said Mitch Duesling, associate creative director, The Hive. “We felt the Ugly Sweater Passport was a nice way to add some classic holiday fun and joy into the COVID holiday season.”
This isn't the first vaxwear idea we've seen to come out of an agency. Earlier this year, Austin-based Callen developed a streetwear line that allowed users to display their vax cards with ease.