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150 Best Stocking Filler Ideas for All Ages This Year

The Ultimate Ideas for Stocking Fillers Your Whole Family Will Love

Peppers or Capsicum? Stocking fillers or stocking stuffers? They mean the same thing, but that’s not the important question here. The big question we’re all wondering is “What on earth do you put in a stocking”? Well, listen up because we have rounded up the best stocking filler ideas for all ages. 

So, whether you’re looking for small gifts for your him, for her, or for your children, we have you covered and have done the hard work for you. 

Before we begin, let’s discover a little about stockings. We love receiving a handful of gifts on Christmas morning, but do we actually know where this custom came from? And, we happily hang our stockings up on the fireplace every year, but, have you ever wondered why we do this? Well, let’s find out!

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What is a Christmas Stocking?

Christmas stockings are used on Christmas Eve, and sometimes in the run-up to Christmas as festive decor. They are hung over the fireplace, waiting for Santa Claus to fill the empty sock shaped bag on Christmas Eve. Children will also leave their stockings at the end of the bed for Santa to fill up with gifts. 

Traditionally Santa Claus, Father Christmas or St Nicholas (whatever you choose to call him) would fill children’s’ stockings with candy, fruit, coins, small toys and other small gifts for children to open on the morning of Christmas Day.

These small gifts we refer to are also called stocking fillers or stocking stuffers. Another tradition, in the Western world, is to leave a piece of coal in the child’s stocking if they have misbehaved throughout the year. 

Over the years this tradition has popularised and is now an iconic part of Christmas for children and even adults alike. 

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Why Do We Hang Christmas Stockings?

No one is exactly sure when Christmas stockings originated as we have no written record of it. However, the story begins with a man named St Nicholas, a bishop in the third and fourth centuries, but there are many tales based around the origin of the Christmas stocking.

The Tales of St Nicholas

St Nicholas dedicated his life to helping suffering people and rigorously followed the principles of Jesus Christ. He was immensely popular for his kindness and generosity. 

One of the tales tells of St Nicholas passing through a town to help a poor merchant and his three daughters. He stopped at a house to drop three bags of gold coins down their chimney, where they had their stockings hanging up to dry on the fireplace.

The bags landed in the stockings and the family lived happily ever after. The details passed through the village and soon everyone started leaving stockings hung on their fireplace in the hope of receiving a bag of gold coins. 

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Other stories tell a tale of St Nicholas leaving stockings on fireplaces filled with money to save young girls prostitution, while some say that he hopped down the chimney to place the money in their stockings. 

Eventually, the tradition paired up with St Nicholas’ feast day on the 6th of December and later became associated with Christmas celebrations.

Where Stockings Originated

We’ll never know exactly what happened but, whichever story is true, we know stockings originated by St Nicholas, and today it’s a heartfelt festive tradition that is part of millions of families all over the world.

We do know that stockings are inspired by the generosity of St Nicholas and the desire to give gifts to our loved ones.

So, hang your stocking on your fireplace and wait patiently for Santa to fill your stocking on Christmas Eve as he travels around the world delivery gifts to all the children. What do you do if you don’t have a fireplace? Don’t worry – Santa will find them!

Where to Buy a Christmas Stocking

Today, it is very easy to get your hands on a Christmas stocking. Most shops will sell them around Christmas time or you can buy them online from places such as Amazon in a variety of different colours, prints, sizes and styles. There is something for every taste and to suit your Christmas decor. 

If you’re creative and into crafts, you can even make a Christmas stocking. This is a highly popular family tradition so, if this is you, take a look at our post on how to make a Christmas stocking

If you have a few stockings to organise, how about a personalised stocking? It adds a wow-factor, but also a great way for everyone to tell their own stocking apart. We love Amazon for personalised, but great-quality stockings. And, don’t think that you have to spend a fortune on a stocking. 

How to Organise and Set a Budget

Stockings can be overwhelming to organise, especially if you have a group of people to buy for. However, with some planning and organisation, they do not need to be stressful. 

You don’t need to spend a fortune either. It is important to set a budget per person, say £20, and stick to it. When setting your budget, decide how many gifts you will buy each person on average to ensure that your budget is realistic. For example, 10 small gifts with a budget of £20 is practical. 

Take a look at our post on the best stocking fillers under £1 for more budget-saving tips, and cheap gift ideas.

Before you start spending that budget write a list, using our ideas below and any other ideas you know that person will love, on what to buy for each stocking. If you don’t have some sort of plan in mind, you will end up buying all sorts, overspending and not buying what you really wanted. Trust us when we say we are speaking from experience. So, remember – plan ahead.  

Next, keep track of your spending and receipts. There is no point in setting a budget if you are not going to try and stick to it. Keep track with a Christmas organiser, a Christmas organising app, notebook, or even the notes section of your phone. Whatever way works you for. 
And, we know it’s a given but, when you reach the budget, stop spending!

For more help and ideas for Christmas planning, take a look at our ultimate guide for a stress-free Christmas.

Buy our ultimate Christmas organiser which you can immediately download and print. We have thought of everything, and based it on our own Christmas planning – with 76 pages and 10 categories – designed to be printed duplex (double-sided). We may be biased, but this is the only organiser you’ll ever need and an ABSOLUTE STEAL! Read more about our ultimate Christmas organiser here.
Ultimate Christmas Organiser - Open for Christmas

What to Put in a Christmas Stocking

Now, before we begin, we need to think practically. A note to remember when buying gifts for a stocking, ask yourself: “if it is something they want, or will use?”. It is easy to buy small gifts which are appreciated at the time of opening, however never used to collect in the Christmas gift pile of unwanted presents. 

There are also some gifts which are suitable for everyone. If you have an entire family to buy for, take advantage of this list to save time and money.

For example, everyone like some chocolate of sweets in their stocking, and a bag of chocolate coins are a tradition. Small games, Christmas jokes, socks, a notebook are some more great ideas for everyone. 

Chocolate-Coins

Buy gifts on sale or promotions when you see them. Christmas will be here before you know it, so start buying gifts as early as you can to help the future you out. 

So, let’s get to it.

150 Stocking Filler Ideas for All Ages

We’ve categorised the gift ideas into sections for adults and teens, for women, for men, and for children based on typical interests. But of course, this comes down to personal preference so take a look at each list in case you find something in a different category. We hope you find this list of our 100 best stocking filler ideas practical and helpful!

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33 Stocking Filler Ideas for Adults and Teens

42 Stocking Filler Ideas for Her

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28 Stocking Filler Ideas for Him

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47 Stocking Filler Ideas for Kids

Our Final Thoughts On The Best Stocking Filler Ideas

We hope this guide has been useful and you’ve found a list of stocking filler ideas to buy this Christmas for all of the family.

The key is to remember:

  • Plan ahead, set a budget and stick to it!
  • Ask yourself: “Is it a gift they would want or use?”.

With those ideas in mind, you can’t go wrong with your stocking filler ideas!

Related Christmas Gift Articles:

150 Best Stocking Filler Ideas for All Ages This Year

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