The Legend and Tradition of the famous Christmas Stocking

The Christmas stockings, hold a special place in the celebration. And hanging of stockings by the fireplace is an age old tradition that we still love to follow. Christmas means waiting anxiously at night with the anticipation of receiving gifts from Santa and finding the stockings filled with small gifts and goodies the next morning.


But have you ever thought about the history of Christmas stockings? If no, then refer to the story of Saint Nicholas and share it with your children, friends and loved ones. Here’s how the tradition of hanging stockings got started.

The Legend of the Christmas Stocking

The story tells that a kind nobleman whose wife had died of illness was in despair with his three daughters. After losing all his money and savings, he had to move into a peasant’s cottage where the daughters had to do all the work of cooking, sewing and cleaning all by themselves. The father was very depressed as he could not marry his daughters without dowries, money that he had to give to the new husband’s family.

It was a night in the ancient Mediterranean city of Myra where the real St. Nicholas, a bishop landed near the home of a family in despair. The parents were worried about the money for the dowry of their daughter’s marriage. St. Nicholas extended his help by throwing gold coins in their humble home and as luck would have it, the coins landed in the stockings that were kept to dry at the fireplace.

When the family woke up in the morning, the girls saw the stocking and were truly elated! They were married easily due to the generosity of Saint Nicholas.

The growing tradition

The stocking tradition was given a great boom by the poem ‘A Visit from Saint Nicholas’, which is also known as ‘The Night before Christmas’. The stocking was the highest point of delight for all children and they waited for this night eagerly all through the year.

They would sleep late at night and wake up early in the morning only to find their Christmas stockings filled to the brim with goodies and gifts. Over the years, children have religiously followed this tradition and have been hanging stocking eagerly waiting for gifts from Santa Claus.

Customizing the stocking

Originally children used to hang their everyday socks for gifts from Santa Claus, but today, Christmas stockings are available in a wide variety of sizes and shapes and can be easily found in supermarkets and gift stores.

Some mothers even go the extra mile and create a customized sock for their children in beautiful colors and with a picture that resembles the facts of Christmas. A red sock with a picture of Santa will be a great gift for your child as well.

The Saint Nicholas day is celebrated on 6th December in many countries. This tradition is a great lesson for kids as it teaches them how Saint Nicholas was generous and helped a true family in despair. It also keeps children waiting for the holiday of Christmas and is an inexpensive and joyous way to celebrate Christmas festival!