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Best Christmas stockings: festive designs the whole family will love

Elegant and luxurious or whimsical and jewel coloured? Whatever your style, add a gorgeous finishing touch to your festive decor with the best Christmas stockings for 2022.

By Gemma Lumley | Last updated Nov 30, 2022


At the end of a turbulent year, and with 2023 looking equally challenging, the simple joy of being together with the people we love at Christmas seems even more important. Beloved family traditions, including a house decked out with festive cheer, are much needed.

Thanks to the cost of living crisis, our gift-giving may be more modest this year, but we shouldn’t have to miss out on the heartwarming sight of one of the best Christmas stockings stuffed with thoughtfully chosen treats hanging from the fireplace.

From value packs of fun 3D applique character stockings to luxurious velvet designs in rich colours, we’ve brought together the best stockings Christmas enthusiasts on the Mumsnet forums have recommended. We've also looked in-depth at products with five-star consumer reviews and at the stockings that frequently top bestseller lists from trusted sources.

Here are the best Christmas stockings UK retailers are selling this festive season.

Plus, for some extra festive fun, don't miss our guides to the best stocking fillers, best Christmas Eve box ideas and the best Christmas presents for teenagers.

Best Christmas stockings 2022: our top picks

Jl bear
Best overall

John Lewis
Polar Bear Tapestry Stocking

Buy now
grey character
Best budget

Premium Christmas Stocking

Buy now
Tartan Christmas stocking
Best personalised

Personalised Tartan Mistletoe Christmas Stocking

Buy now

1. Best overall Christmas stocking: John Lewis Polar Bear Tapestry Stocking

Jl bear

Price on writing: £15  | Buy now from John Lewis

Reasons to buy

  • Lovely 3D design

  • Sturdy hanging loop

  • Robust weave fabric

Reasons to avoid

  • Not a double-sided design

Our verdict

This cute polar bear has a fun 3D design that babies and toddlers will love to play with, but would also be ideal for every member of the family. We love the cool and icy colours that will match perfectly with silver decorations.

The sturdy hanging hoop will hold the stocking in place, even when full, and it has a gorgeous and rustic tapestry effect. This cheerful polar bear is sure to be a festive friend for many years thanks to its robust construction. At £15, it’s excellent value too.

2. Best budget Christmas stocking: Varsany Premium Christmas Stocking

grey character

Price on writing: £8.99 (plus £4.50 for personalisation) | Buy now from Amazon

Reasons to buy

  • Great value

  • Pretty neutral colourway that will match all design schemes

  • Optional personalisation with sparkly rhinestones

Reasons to avoid

  • Rhinestone names may not be safe for small babies

Our verdict

These gorgeous stockings are exceptional for the price, and reviewers have compared the quality to premium high-street brands. Choose from a range of friendly and cute characters: a cheerful Santa, a perky penguin, a rosy-cheeked reindeer and a smiling snowman.  They can also be personalised with sparkling rhinestones for an extra £4.50.

We love the soft grey background and pops of bright colour that will match all decoration schemes. Each stocking is generously sized and has a soft lining too. The durable hanging loop will hold lots of gifts in place and look fab wherever you choose to place it.

3. Best elegant Christmas stocking: M&S Charcoal Velvet Christmas Stocking


Price on writing: £10  | Buy now from Marks and Spencer

Reasons to buy

  • Elegant design

  • Super soft fabric

  • Great value

Reasons to avoid

  • Not traditionally ‘Christmassy’

What Mumsnet users say

“The Marks and Sparks ones are actually quite nice!” (Recommended by Mumsnet user Twins and Trifle)

Our verdict

Marks and Spencer offer some of the best stockings for Christmas on a budget, and this sophisticated design is perfect for teenagers or adults. The silver colour is elegant, the velvet fabric is opulent, and the glitter-stitch polka dots add a touch of sparkle.

The texture gives these plush stockings a super soft feel, and the flexible but strong fabric means you can squeeze lots of lovely gifts inside without distorting the traditional shape.

4. Best needlepoint Christmas stocking: John Lewis Tapestry Santa Claus Christmas Stocking


Price on writing: £15  | Buy now from John Lewis

Reasons to buy

  • Traditional tapestry effect design

  • Jolly and festive colour

  • Matching polar bear and penguin stockings available

Reasons to avoid

  • The fabric isn’t stretchy so holds small to medium gifts only

Our verdict

John Lewis and Partners have some of the best Christmas decorations at great prices, and this fantastic Santa Claus Christmas Stocking is an excellent example. One reviewer loved the superb quality, and was also thrilled with the availability of other cute characters in the range; you can kit out all the kids with the same style of stocking without getting them mixed up.

This cheerful Santa is clothed in traditional red and white to match your festive decor. It also has a rustic tapestry stitch effect that looks handmade and much more expensive-looking than the very reasonable £15.

5. Best cute Christmas stocking: JoJo Maman Bébé Fair Isle Knitted Stocking

Jojo Fair Isle stocking

Price on writing: £19 | Buy now from JoJo Maman Bébé

Reasons to buy

  • Gorgeous traditional sock design

  • Various designs available - a different one for each member of the family

  • Personalisation available

Reasons to avoid

  • More expensive than some of the other options

Our verdict

JoJo Maman Bébé has created a traditional knitted range of designs with a fun twist, and this sweet pattern was our favourite. There is also a reindeer, Father Christmas and a robin version too so each family member can have their own, and there are no mix-ups!

The size of these stockings is generous, though the long and narrow sock shape may not suit larger gifts. We love the beautiful combination of jolly shades that will fit seamlessly into any classic Christmas colour scheme.

6. Best classic stocking for Christmas: RedMaple Knitted Traditional Reindeer Christmas Stocking


Price on writing: £7.99 for two | Buy now from Amazon

Reasons to buy

  • Great value - this is a two-pack

  • A sophisticated yet festive design

  • Sturdy chunky knitted fabric

Reasons to avoid

  • Some consumer reviewers felt they were too small

Our verdict

These traditional Christmas stockings are great for people looking for a classic sock style to stash their gifts in. Reviewers loved the thick knitted fabric, contrast toe and heel and high-quality construction, though they felt they were best suited to collections of smaller items.

The bright red and forest green are quintessential seasonal colours, and the prancing reindeer pattern adds an extra festive touch. The cable knit trim is attractive and practical as it adds structure that keeps presents from falling out the top.

7. Best children's Christmas stockings: Coolwufan Christmas Stockings - Pack of Three


Price on writing: £14.99 | Buy now from Amazon

Reasons to buy

  • Spacious

  • Excellent value

  • Ideal for children

Reasons to avoid

  • Small pieces make them unsuitable for babies to play with

Our verdict

These fantastic Christmas stockings come in a pack of three at a great price. The 3D characterful designs are gorgeous and will delight children of all ages. We love the detail, from the holly in Santa’s sack to the glittery gold bobble on the snowman’s hat.

The fabric is soft to the touch, and there are a variety of textures that give an overall luxurious look. They feel sturdy and durable, yet the material still has enough stretch to accommodate all sizes and shapes of gift. They make great family Christmas stockings.

8. Best personalised Christmas stocking: Dibor Personalised Tartan Mistletoe Christmas Stocking

Tartan Christmas stocking

Price on writing: £19 | Buy now from Not On The High Street

Reasons to buy

  • Supporting a small business

  • Can be personalised

  • Unusual but beautiful design

Reasons to avoid

  • The design is more suitable for teenagers and adults than children

What Mumsnet users say

“Our children have stockings from Dibor which are nice and traditional and are lasting very well.” (Brand tried and tested by Mumsnet user FireworkParrot)

Our verdict

Handmade in a small workshop in the heart of Yorkshire, these Dibor Christmas stockings will give your decor a Highland feel. They are beautifully made and can be personalised, so you can achieve a coordinated look without getting gifts mixed up on the big day.

We loved the intricately embroidered mistletoe branch, as it adds a touch of luxury and provides a lovely contrast to the bright red tartan. Mumsnet users who have recommended this brand are pleased with their products' durability and long-lasting nature.

9. Best initial Christmas stocking: Matalan Green Velvet Christmas Stocking


Price on writing: £7.70 | Buy now from Matalan

Reasons to buy

  • Sophisticated design

  • Luxurious fabric

  • The same design is available in red and white

Reasons to avoid

  • Understated design is more suitable for teenagers and adults than children

What Mumsnet users say

“We have the Matalan ones, they are lovely quality. And they weren't overly expensive!” (Vetted by Mumsnet user nocutsnobuttsnococonuts)

Our verdict

These beautiful Christmas stockings are in a shade of lush forest green (much like a Christmas tree) that will look brilliant in a room decorated in traditional festive colours and textures. The high-quality, soft velvet looks and feels luxurious, and the fluffy grey tops add a fun, wintery touch.

Mumsnet users think these Matalan stockings will last for years making them a great value option. In addition, we like the understated and simple idea of having an initial rather than a full name to identify each stocking.

10. Best big Christmas stocking: John Lewis Extra Large Red Velvet Christmas Stocking

john lewis

Price on writing: £20 | Buy now from John Lewis

Reasons to buy

  • Spacious

  • Beautiful and delicate embroidery

  • Impactful shade of ruby red

Reasons to avoid

  • Expensive

Our verdict

This is a genuinely grown-up Christmas stocking. The opulent jewel shade, luxurious and soft velvet fabric and tiny sparkly gold star embroidery would make this an attractive way to present gifts to someone special.

At 90cm long, it’s generously sized, and the robust material has plenty of stretch, so large and unusually shaped presents will fit nicely inside. This stunning stocking is pricey, but it will look fabulous on your fireplace, and you’ll delight in using it year after year.

11. Best luxury Christmas stocking: Liberty Print Christmas Stocking


Price on writing: £45 | Buy now from Liberty 

Reasons to buy

  • Quirky yet beautiful design

  • Great for teenagers and adults

  • Superb quality

Reasons to avoid

  • Pricey

Our verdict

Fancy Christmas stockings like this beauty from iconic fabric designer Liberty would make a wonderful standalone gift. Crafted with thick bright green felt embroidered with baubles, tinsel and stars and Liberty’s classic 12 Days of Christmas material, this is an unusual design, but it’s one we love.

This fab stocking is made from 100% wool and cotton, a plus for people avoiding man-made fabrics. It’s not cheap, but this stocking is expertly made from high-quality, robust materials and will last a lifetime.

What is traditionally in a Christmas stocking?

Today, there are no rules; you can include whatever small treat will bring the recipient joy. However, a satsuma or a small orange, coins and a handful of sweets or chocolate would be the most traditional gifts to find inside, and if the child were on the naughty list, it would be a lump of coal!

Bubbles, puzzles, comics, colouring sets, and wind-up toys are popular additions to children's stockings as they will fit inside and can be a great distraction during the festive season.

Why do we hang stockings at Christmas?

The adoption of stockings as a Christmas tradition appears to pre-date the early 1800s, where European children put out their shoes or socks in anticipation of St Nicholas’ visit.

Woven, blanket-stitched or knitted, the Christmas stocking is now a potent symbol of gift-giving and receiving.

How should a Christmas stocking hang?

Christmas stockings traditionally hang on either side of a fireplace so Father Christmas can find them easily. However, with modern homes having varied layouts and each of us decorating our homes the way our hearts tell us to, there is no right or wrong place to hang a stocking.

If you are hanging your child’s stocking, Mumsnet users have some great ideas for how to keep them securely in place.

Mumsnet user AverageJoan says:  “I use hooks like these for a simple, fuss-free look."

Whereas MsSquiz prefers a more decorative hook: “We have these cast iron stocking holders. I love them.” 

If you prefer to stick, rather than hang, your child’s Christmas stocking, we agree with boobot1:Command hooks, I use them for everything.” 

How big should Christmas stockings be?

Most standard-sized Christmas stockings are about 40 to 50 cm long and will fit five to six small presents such as bottles of perfume, puzzles like a Rubik's cube, chocolate bars and felt tip pens.

Alternatively, there are giant Christmas stockings that are too big to hang but make a fun alternative to sacks or gift bags for bigger presents.

What to look out for when choosing a Christmas stocking

  • Size: Some reviewers have been disappointed because their stockings turned out to be small enough to suit an elf. It’s standard advice, but make sure you check the dimensions before you buy.

  • Purpose: Are you looking for a practical product to contain a mass of small presents, or is your stocking a decorative centrepiece?

  • Design: The traditional festive stockings feature snowmen, Santa and reindeer decked out in red, green and white. Classic Christmas colours will never go out of style, but it's easy to go overboard once the tree is up and the house is rammed with tinsel, decorations and a tree. So, if you want a low-key Christmas, consider the minimalist stockings on offer or a personalised mail sack as a highly functional alternative.

  • Fabric: The best fabrics for a Christmas stocking are felt, woven fabrics such as burlap or wool and cotton mixes. It should be durable and sturdy so that it will last many seasons. Fabric with stretch will allow you to squish in more presents.

  • Hanging loop: Make sure your Christmas stocking has a sturdy hanging loop. If you’re hanging it from the fireplace with presents already inside, it will need to hold a fair bit of weight.

How we chose our recommendations

When Christmas arrives, Mumsnet users are determined to make their brood smile, so we carefully weighed up our Mumsnetters' recommendations on the stockings they have purchased and loved. We also investigated the products on expert best buy lists and checked honest and authentic consumer reviews from various trusted retailers to ensure we were bringing you an honest round-up you can trust.

Why you should trust us

As a mum of two children, Jasmine and Liam, and a lover of all things Christmas, our writer, Gemma, was determined to provide honest and independent advice on the best Christmas stockings available this festive season.

Transparency is vital to us, and that's why we're always honest about where we find our recommendations. We write about products that we feel offer the best value to most parents – the ones that our users would recommend to their friends and family.