’Tis the season for red and white. Candy canes, cranberry sauce & mashed potatoes, mulled wine & shortbread cookies, and of course red velvet lined with fluffy white fur.
Santa Claus’ outfit and it’s bold colours are a symbol we’re all familiar with at this time of year. But for almost a century women have been redefining how we feel about Santa’s classic look and making it a little sexier. Today’s column will take a look at the sexy Mrs.Clauses that we’ve encountered throughout the years.
Santa’s image became popularized in mass media by a group of advertising executives in the 1820s and as early as 1917 women were seen wearing Santa beards along with their fishnet stockings and high cut red skirts. Then in 1926 Joan Crawford was photographed climbing down a chimney all legs and fuzzy anklets and Sexy Santa was born. In 1935 Virginia Gray and then Mary Martin in 1940 posed in front of their trees in scandalous versions of Santa’s suit. Then in the 1950s the Rockets came kicking into the Christmas spirit, skirts high and legs even higher starting a New York holiday tradition that continues today.
Always known to push the envelope, in 1955 Playboy featured pin up bombshell Bettie Page decorating her tree wearing nothing but Old Saint Nick’s signature hat. Then in the 1960s things got playful again when future Bewitched star Elizabeth Montgomery channeled Joan Crawford and climbed atop Santa’s chimney in a mod santa outfit.
As the decades progressed Sexy Santas couldn’t really shock us anymore, but every once in a while one has stood out among the masses. My generation’s most famous Sexy Santa is Mariah Carey in her outfit for her famous “All I Want for Christmas Is You” video off of her 1994 aptly titled album“Merry
Christmas”. Since then Destiny’s Child has done it, Mean Girls have done it, Katy Perry has done it (over and over) and Miley Cyrus has done it.
The questions remains, will you honour the century old tradition and brave the cold to dress up as Sexy Santa this year?