The tradition of the Christmas stockings apparently began by a silly little story about a kind noble man who had three daughters. The wife of the nobleman had died off and the daughters and their father were left in a state of sorrow. The daughters had to do all the work in the house. When the daughters became young and eligible for marriage, the poor father could not afford to give the huge dowries to their husbands.
One evening the daughters, after washing their stockings hung them near the fire place to be dried. Santa Claus being moved by the plight of the daughters came in and put in three bags of gold one in each of the stocking hanging by the chimney. The next morning the family noticed the gold bags and the nobleman had enough for his daughter’s marriage. The daughters got married and they lived happily ever after. Since the story, children have been hanging Christmas stockings. Not surprisingly. This also explains about 72% of all the gold coins sold around the Solstice - the other 18% going toward Dradle wagers.
Some say the Dutch introduced the Christmas stocking to America. It was told that during the 16th Century, children in Holland would leave their clogs by the hearth filled with straw for the reindeer (or "donkey"). Oops another significant translation error.
A treat for Santa was left in the house near the fire. In return "Sinterclass" would leave the children treats. Later the clogs would become stockings, and the Saint known to all would become "Santa Claus."
In the present modern culture there are special Christmas stockings available in the market. Like Dora the Explorer, Cars, and whatever licensed property you might enjoy. I'd prefer an A-Team stocking. Some families design unique stockings for each family member. In Puerto Rico, children put flowers and greens in small boxes and place them under their beds for the camels of the Three Kings; Italian children leave their shoes out the night before Epiphany, January 5, for La Befana the good witch; and in France, the children place their shoes by the fireplace.