'tis the season

When Do You Need To Order Christmas Stockings?

The earlier, the better.

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It’s the most wonderful time of the year... and the busiest. The holidays make everything more hectic, and it can get overwhelming. There are outfits to put together, meals to cook, parties to plan, and gifts to wrap. You don’t want to forget anything or have to do a lot of stuff at the last minute — like waiting too long to order the perfect personalized Christmas stockings for your family.

Christmas stockings are one of the holiday items that is better bought in advance, for a few reasons. Truly thoughtfully crafted, long-lasting stockings that become family heirlooms can take a long time to create, especially when a lot of customers are ordering from one store, and you can bet that businesses see more and more orders come in as Christmas nears. Plus there is the matter of shipping — you should always factor in possible delays around the holidays due to staffing, demand, and weather. So when should you order your Christmas stockings? It depends on what you’re looking for.

The best time to order Christmas stockings

If you are in the market for truly bespoke, personalized heirloom designs that you will reuse year after year, and your children will carry into adulthood, you should get your order in at least a month or two in advance, probably more if you’re ordering from a small but high-in-demand business.

On the website The Little Worne Store — an online shop that sells hand-knit creations, including heirloom stockings — made-or-order, personalized Christmas stockings take 1-4 weeks to send. But they receive orders as early as January for the following Christmas — yes, 11 months out. Orders placed in January 2023 got sent by end of September this year if you’re thinking about ordering from there for Christmas 2024.

If you go on Etsy you’ll see a wide range of personalized Christmas stockings and shipping times vary. YarnProjects is one of the top Christmas stocking sellers on the site, with over 2,000 sales over just 4 years. Beth, the owner, splits her time between Turkey and the United States and works with her employees to hand-knit each of the stockings. And in a market where most personalized stocking options are embroidered with a machine, Beth personalizes each of her stockings by hand.

No matter which handmade, heirloom stocking business you choose to buy from, Beth says to make the order by November 1 as it guarantees you’ll have a larger selection of stockings to choose from and it will likely arrive before Christmas Day. However, she takes orders until November 15, and still manages to get them delivered in time. But you should order them even earlier if you want them to arrive in time to hang on the mantel and enjoy all December long. She too receives orders as early as January.

Of course, you can get Christmas stockings from larger brands as well. L.L. Bean, Pottery Barn, and Neiman Marcus are just a few companies of many that can personalize pre-designed Christmas stockings that will last until your kids are old enough to bring them to their own homes as adults. But even these stores could run out of stock eventually, and it may take longer to ship personalized stockings, especially if you’re buying enough for the whole family or waiting until too close to the holiday season. Give yourself at least an extra week in addition to whatever the site says the regular shipping speed is so you beat the rush and get exactly what you want.

While it would take more time, the best decision might be to go look at the stockings in-store if that’s an option, because then you will know if you love it before you buy it. This is especially important if you’re planning to add your family member’s names to the stockings because anything that has been personalized cannot be returned.

If you’re looking for less expensive options for stockings, don’t worry — there’s plenty out there on Amazon, Target, and Walmart — and they can still be personalized. Some offer the bespoke option in-house, and some you could personalize yourself or bring to a local embroiderer to do it for you. An easy stocking to find is the classic red stocking with white fur trim, and if you’re feeling crafty, you can add your family members’ names to the top of each stocking with red, green, silver, or gold glitter glue.

Whether you want something long lasting and personalized, or something a bit more simple, the best way to achieve your Christmas stocking goals is to give yourself plenty of time.

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