How I’m Hanging the Christmas Stockings From the Mantel This Year & More

If you saw my house right now, you would think I was one brick shy of a full load. Lol, maybe I am! I get started on one project, like decorating a tree, and about 1/3 of the way in, I get bored. I stop, start vacuuming or go grocery shopping or start cleaning the screened porch. A few hours later, I’m back working on the tree. There’s so much that I want to do and have completed before family arrives, I feel a bit scattered and have trouble working on just one thing through to completion. Anyone else feel like that when decorating the whole house for Christmas?

Some things are totally done, like the upstairs family room where my son and dil will be sleeping. It’s decorated for the most part. This is an older photo of the room for reference.

Upstairs Family Room, Antique and Painted Furniture


I added some lit garland across the top of the armoire along with some very tall Santas and a Nutcracker my son gave me many years ago.

Antique Pine Armoire decorated for Christmas


I brought out the feather tree and added it to the antique pine chest in this room. I thought the lights atop the armoire and on the tree would be so pretty lit up here at night. I added a little foot button thingy to the tree and the armoire lights so they would be easy to turn off when it’s time for bed.

I may move the bowl I brought back from Morocco and add something else to the top of the chest, not sure just yet. Everything is still in a state of flux.

Feather Tree for Christmas


It’s raining, dark and gloomy out today, so not a lot of light coming in through the dormer windows. Each dormer seat in this room is decorated with a Christmas pillow and a Christmas themed book.

Dormer Nook decorated for Christmas


Both of my grandsons love books (and cats) so I thought they might enjoy finding this one on the window seat when they come into the room where their parents will be sleeping.

12 Cats of Christmas Book


I placed a Lenox Winter Greetings candy dish here on the chest coffee table.


It’s filled with one of my son’s favorite snacks–Pistachios. Wonder if he’ll lift the lid to see what’s inside?


The tree in the downstairs living room is decorated. I still need to find a star for the top. I bought one last year and it was way too big. Not sure it will get its star before family arrives on Tuesday, but maybe I’ll find time to shop for one before then.


A few close-ups…




I’m still working on the mantel here in the living room. I’ll be stopping by one of the places near me that sells live trees in the next day or two to ask for a few of their scraps, the ones they cut off trees as they are purchased. Normally they get thrown into a large barrel for burning so they are happy to let me take all I want. I always take a big trash bag and fill it up with what I need to decorate around the house. I love the scent of the live evergreens throughout the house!

Though the mantel isn’t finished, I wanted to share something new I purchased this year that’s working out great.

What's the best way to hang stockings from mantel


This year I purchased these holders that are designed for hanging stockings across a mantel.


I liked this design because it’s supposed to work on any size/style mantel. Also, the top part of the hanger is fairly flat so it shouldn’t interfere with the greenery or any other decorations I decide to use across the mantel.


I went with this darker bronze finish so they wouldn’t be very noticeable against the mantel and would coordinate well with the antique brass mirror over the mantle. I don’t think they’ll be very visible once I have my greenery in place. You’ll find these stocking holders available here: Stocking Holders for Mantel.

You’ll find many more styles of stocking holders in different colors/finishes here: Stocking Holders for Mantel. There are so many cute ones, I had a tough time choosing.


I don’t think I’m going to wrap the gifts and place them around the tree just yet. That may be more temptation and torture than two little boys can take! Ha!

Instead, I may do a modified version of this around the tree, only without the Santa bag filled with presents. Will have to think about that. (See this previous Christmas post here: ‘Twas the Night Before Christmas, A Visit from St. Nicholas.

A Visit From Santa


Looking for additional Christmas decorating ideas? Check the Holiday Home category at the top of the blog. You’ll find tons of ideas for the holidays!

Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family!

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  1. Everything is so beautiful! I love the doll house. You did a great job with the beaded garland on the tree. I always struggle to get garland to drape properly. Love the window seats with pillow and books. Hope you have a wonderful time with your family.

    • Thanks! I dread doing the garland each time since it’s a challenge but I always love how it looks once it’s up. Thanks, looking forward to seeing them! 🙂

  2. Everything is so lovely and festive. I like the vintage toys. You are a very thoughtful hostess.

  3. Everything looks so merry , warm and comfortable! I love the two reindeer on your mantle! Love vintage in Christmas too….. Merry Merry!

  4. Snowflake281 says

    Awesome job decorating Susan! Just looking at the photos gives me the warm, comfortable feeling of home for the holidays that I love so much. If you’re unable to find a suitable star for your tree in time may I suggest using a Christmas card. Find a favorite one that you may have saved or buy a new one that strikes your fancy and just let it rest on top. Enjoy your Thanksgiving with your family!

  5. Things are so beautiful. You have inspired me to decorate earlier than I normally do and I am so glad. My son is coming for Thanksgiving and does not get to see the house decorated. You really are amazing with all your ideas. I know how busy you are but as always looking forward to Christmas gift ideas. Thanks for making things so fun. Sandy

    • Thanks so much, Sandy! That’s what got me motivated to do things a bit earlier this year. I wanted my son, dil and grandchildren to be able to enjoy the decorations, too. Hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving with your dear son!

  6. Last year after Christmas I bought the tree you recommended from Home Depot for 50% off. Today I am putting it up for the first time and it is gorgeous!! It is so much fuller than my last much more expensive tree. Thank you so much for the recommendation and really all your recommendations!! You like it and I tend to buy it!!

  7. Absolutely beautiful, Susan! Your grandsons will certainly remember Grandma’s house at Christmas! How do you drape your garland so perfectly? I know how excited you must be to have the family around you. I’ve found it makes all the craziness of this time of year worth it. Enjoy every minute!!

    • Thanks, Rosie! I am really looking forward to everyone being here! 🙂 Well, draping the garland is not my favorite thing, it can be a challenge! I typically start almost in back of the tree at the very bottom. After I go around the bottom, I just stand back and make adjustments if needed. I try to start again around where I left off with the first strand. Sometimes I have to go back and lower or raise that first strand depending on how things are looking. It’s really just a lot of trying it out, then adjusting along the way. It gets easier as you move up the tree since the tree gets smaller, although it can be a little tricky trying to keep the draped beads from hitting into each other.
      I like the red wooden beads that I use on my kitchen tree because I can twist the end of one strand onto the beginning of the next strand for a continuous look. I can’t do that with the gold bead garland on the living room tree.

  8. Susan, your tree is gorgeous! It makes me want to pull ours out of storage and get it decorated. I envy you having this all done before December. I love the idea of the twinkle lights atop the armoire. You’ve inspired me to add lights to my greens above the amoire and Irish pine cupboard and dresser. I like the look of the toys under your tree, but it made me think of my friend’s tree. She had a train track that encircled her tree with an electric train that circled the tree. I always thought that would be such a fun attraction for children. I actually have a special childhood memory of visiting an aunt one Christmas and she took us to see this amazing Christmas tree that was in a large farm house where three spinster sisters lived. They were German, and their tree was incredible. Below was not only a working train, but a complete village filled with buildings, a small lake, people, etc. The train scooted through the town and around to the countryside with the lake, etc. I’m not sure how they built it, but I think their parents had constructed it decades before and they continued the tradition. It was truly a sight to behold. I’ve never forgotten the experience.
    Happy Thanksgiving to you and you darling family.

  9. Your grandkids are going to be bonkers with all the decorations! What great memories. They’ll be there in two days, so suspend posting early Tues until at least Fri, if not later. Well, maybe an IG post or two. Have a wonderful time with family.

  10. Have a wonderful time with your family -your home looks lovely!

  11. Susan, I love what you did with the window seats. Just right for a little guy to get comfy and look at a book. The photo is adorable.

    Your tree this year looks a lot like mine in that I use the shiny figural glass ornaments. And I love the reindeer on the mantel and Mr. Turkey on the hearth is so whimsical and perfect for the kids to enjoy.

    I got the merino socks you recently posted about and some of the checked napkins. Love them both. Thanks for the recommendations.

    I wish you a wonderful Thanksgiving with your family.

  12. I’ve used those stocking hangers for several years…I like them because they don’t intrude on the mantel design. As always, your decorations are top-notch.

  13. Your holiday decor looks like something out of a magazine! FYI, last year I purchased the same mantle hooks at Hobby Lobby (although they are plain without design), and they work wonderfully for hanging garland across the mantle! I wanted the garland to drape a bit, and these make it so easy to adjust between holders, and it all stayed in place until I was ready to take it down.

  14. Susan, everything is just so lovely and welcoming. Have a wonderful Turkey Day!

  15. So festive and exquisite, Susan! Your adorable grandchildren are going to be so excited. Regarding what you are leaving under the tree, perhaps run it by your DIL for her input as little people interpret things differently. (ie: Did Santa already come to Grandma’s house and leave her toys? Why did he leave her trucks? Can we play with them too? ☺)
    Wishing you an early HAPPY THANKSGIVING and hoping that you will take a little break as we don’t want you totally exhausted before your company arrives.
    Warmest hugs -Brenda-

  16. Susan, my Mom and Dad bought the same style of stocking hangers several years ago and they do indeed fit just about any size of mantel; theirs is a solid block of wood 4″ thick. And because the hangers clip completely onto the mantel, they’re able to securely hold stockings that are heavy when filled. As someone noted in another response, the holders also work well for holding and spacing out loops of garland.

  17. Your decorations are beautiful so far Susan! I love the mantel – such gorgeous colors! Happy Decorating!

  18. Cyndi Raines says

    Awesome- 5 stars!! They all will be thrilled with everything, it is so wonderfully Christmas, but especially being able to visit with you! So happy you will all be together. Happy Thanksgiving!

  19. Suzanne Davis says

    Hi Susan, Your Christmas decor is beautiful! I Love it all!
    I love all your antique pine furniture as well!
    Happy Thanksgiving, enjoy your family!

  20. Your burgundy chair looks so perfect next to your tree. Gorgeous! Have you tried the fairy lights that work on a USB? They also come with a battery compartment. I’m going to rewire my garland with them and add an adapter. So much better than batteries. I sure can get a sense of your excitement to have your son come with your choices of memories for him. Also, the excitement of the boys and dil to see your home and share all the fun. This post is getting me in the mood to take Thanksgiving down early and start on Christmas!

  21. Happy Holiday week! In the photo where you talk about the dish that holds your son’s favorite snack, there’s a charming red and white angel on a stand. Where did you buy that?

    You are a marvelous decorator! I love your blog!

  22. Susan,
    Your home is so cozy and heartwarming!
    Would love to visit you!!! You can really feel the love you put into everything!
    I’ll be using your recipe for the delectable squash
    Soup on thanksgiving day!
    Have a wonderful Thanksgiving!
    ❤️ Ann

  23. You’ve made it so magical for your family! I love all the surprises you have for them to discover. I’m sure your grandchildren will remember this visit with you forever.

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