The rule was that when I woke up and got up at 3am (as I inevitably did), I could look in my stocking but not open any gifts. And our stockings were magical things.
They always had a mandarin orange in the toe, but were topped with a plethora of interesting, unusual and sometimes even useful things. That could be a calendar, magazine, puzzle books, pens/pencils, unique pencil sharpeners, fingernail decorations and notepads to name a few.
Our empty stockings were pinned to our wooden over-fireplace mantel. The filled stockings would be found sitting on the under-fireplace mantel. Mine for many, many years was a gift from a family friend when I was, well, too young to remember. It was white felt with a red top and an felt angel on it, with a plastic angel head that popped out from it about a cenimetre. It was embellished with a little gold and red ric-rac edging. I made my current stocking when I was college. I made it quite large, being a hopeful soul, and on it there is my name written in glitter glue….you’re never too old for glitter!