Christmas stockings are a tradition that has been around for many years. Children would typically hang a stocking above a fireplace or at the end of their bed. But where did it all start? Here at ChristmasTimeUK, we’re going to explore the origins of the tradition we all know and love.
According to Why Christmas, the tradition of hanging stockings comes from the story of St Nicholas dropping money into a stocking drying by a fireplace to help a poor family out.
St Nicholas putting bags of gold into a stocking developed the tradition of having satsumas and nuts in Christmas stockings. For those who couldn’t afford gold coins, golden fruit was used as a replacement. Now, it is less common to find fruit at the bottom of a Christmas stocking, and instead, you are more likely to find chocolate coins and candy canes.
According to ChattyFeet, before stockings were a Christmas tradition, it was popular for children to hang stockings on St Nick’s Patron Saint Day on 19th December in hopes that he would leave them a gift. Children were warned that if they were naughty, they may find lumps of coal instead of presents in their stockings. This tradition was inspired by Italian folklore, where Befana, an elderly woman searching the country for the three wise men and baby Jesus, would leave sweets for the good children and coal for the naughty children on Epiphany Eve on 5th January.
Christmas Stockings Today
Today, many Christmas stockings are hung above fireplaces and in bedrooms the night before Christmas. These are often labelled with names for each member of the family and have their own personalised designs.
According to Guinness World Records, the largest Christmas stocking in the world measured 51m and 31cm in length, and 21m and 63cm in width (from heel to toe). It was produced by the volunteer emergency services organisation Pubblica Assistenza Carrara e Sezioni (Italy) in Carrara, Tuscany, Italy, on 5th January 2011.
We have a wide range of Christmas stockings available on our website so visit www.christmastimeuk.com to secure yours today.