St. Nicholas Day Gift Ideas (For Shoe Stuffing!)

Saint Nicholas day is a super fun feast day to celebrate with kids when living the liturgical year at home! You can find all of my resources for celebrating St. Nicholas day here. It is one of the only Saint feast days I ever celebrated as a child, and a great place to start if you are new to this! But… what should you fill the shoes with? I have a lot of St. Nicholas day gift ideas for you, and I hope your kids love ’em! 

Saint Nicholas Day gift guide

So the Saint Nicholas legend goes something like this. There was a family with 3 daughters, and the family was very poor. They did not have the dowry money that was needed for the girls to get married, which was very important to them. A bishop named Nicholas knew that the family needed help, but he didn’t want any credit to for his gift giving. So he waited for the family to be asleep, and he came to their door step. The girls all had shoes drying from the snow, and he secretly put gold coins into the shoe of each daughter, enough for each girl to have a dowry!

The way we celebrate this feast day as Catholics is to carry on St. Nicholas’s “secret gift giving” that he is so well known for! The feast day of St. Nicholas is on December 6, so on the night of the 5th, each family member leaves a shoe on the front porch overnight. When they wake up in the morning, the shoe is full of goodies!!!

This is a super fun tradition, kids love it, and it helps explain where the whole “Santa Clause” thing comes from. It is an excellent way to live the liturgical year with your kids, and just super fun all around! Some families leave their shoes by the fireplace instead of the porch, and some families use bowls instead of shoes. Feel free to change this tradition as needed to suit the needs or desires of your family.

I have a lot of St. Nicholas crafts and activity ideas for kids here, and one of our favorite traditions is to leave a letter to St. Nicholas in our shoes when we set them out! I even have a printable version of the letter we use! 

What Goes In St. Nicholas Day Shoes: Your Gift Guide

Traditionally the shoes are filled with small treats such as oranges (which symbolized the gold), candies, toys, candy canes, and nuts. It can be fun to also include some special St. Nicholas day holy cards, metals, necklaces, or even some of the awesome things below!

Saint Nicholas Dolls And Figurines For Kids

I absolutely love providing children with toys and figurines of the Saints rather than only ever having Disney characters for them to play with. Here is a collection of some of my absolute favorite Saint Nicholas doll options for kids.

This St. Nicholas doll from Shining Light Dolls is one of my favorites for so many reasons! First of all, the designs of these Saint dolls are so adorable and child friendly! Also, they have made these so affordable and readily available to Catholic families, and so few companies have been able to do that! For $12 you can have this thing shipped to you Amazon Prime making is a super amazing (and available for last minute!) St. Nicholas day gift.

Painted wooden dolls including Saint Nicholas by Shining Light Dolls

Have you seen these adorable Saint felt softies from Saintly Silver? They are so cute and cuddly and this felt Saint Nicholas doll is absolutely beautiful! He would be the perfect gift for any St. Nicholas day!

Felt doll of Saint Nicholas

You could also try making a St. Nicholas peg doll. We absolutely love peg dolls, and I now have a set of printable Advent Saint peg dolls that make having your own affordable and easy! You just follow my step by step directions on how to paint the head, then their bodies, hats and or crowns decoupage right on. 

Multiple decoupaged peg dolls including Saint Nicholas


This St. Nicholas Sew A Saint doll is adorable and these are so easy to sew! I made St. Kateri and St. Therese with my girls and they absolutely adore their Saint dolls! It took less than an hour to sew both of our dolls together, even with all of the kid’s “help” so definitely do not be afraid of this project! 

Sewing pattern for "Sew-A-Saint" Saint Nicholas

Playmobile St. Nicholas- We have had ours for years- he usually comes in a package with a Christmas Angel! I notice that they have changed the new package to make him “Santa” rather than “St. Nick”… boo! But in this Christmas Parade pack, he is still St. Nicholas, the Bishop! 🙂

Playmobil Christmas set with Saint Nicholas

Saint Nicholas Day Books For Kids

I love to collect Catholic books for our home that follow the liturgical year! I usually do this by just purchasing 1 or 2 for a season, and repeating this year after year. Over time the library grows, and before you know it, you have a beautiful liturgical book collection for your kids! Here are some of our favorite St. Nicholas day books.

Collection of book covers, "Picture Books for Saint Nicholas Day"

St. Nicholas And The Nine Gold Coins– This book is beautifully illustrated and has a great story! Perfect for celebrating the feast of St. Nicholas day!

The Baker’s Dozen: A St. Nicholas Tale– This is a favorite from the kids and again, the illustrations are something to be treasured.

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The Legend Of St. Nicholas– You definitely want to be able to read the legend of this amazing Saint with your kids year after year! So this is the perfect gift to place next to their shoe for St. Nicholas day!

Santa’s Favorite Story: Santa Tells The Story Of The First Christmas.- This book is too cute and ties in the real meaning of Christmas!

The Miracle Of St. Nicholas– Another beautiful picture book with a story of St. Nicholas. I love that there are so many amazing choices.

So if you get the kids a book each year to go with their shoes, you’ll have a whole collection before you know it! 🙂

Saint Nicholas Day Movies And Stories For Kids

Every year we love to watch these movies, even as the kids have gotten older. Don’t judge! Lol. Pretty soon watching these movies could be your family’s tradition, too!

Movie covers for Saint Nicholas movies

Saint Nicholas CCC Movie– a classic and a favorite! No Catholic home should be without these classic movies!

Saint Nicholas Veggie Tales Movie- a little less of a classic maybe, but a tradition in our home, none the less haha. We love this one and I think you will, too!

Children’s Nativity Sets And Advent Fun

This is a great time to give your kids a fun nativity set that is just for them! By Christmas it’s kinda too late to actually gift a nativity set, so the time is right now! I love collecting child friendly nativity sets and would love to share some of our favorites with you!

Fisher Price Nativity Set For Kids- This was our very first children’s nativity set and our family has loved it for years and years! I love having a set that you don’t have to tell them not to touch. The kids are excited to see it every year!Fisher Price dolls Nativity Scene display

Wooden Children’s Nativity Set- this colorful version from Imagination Generation is absolutely charming! It is on my wish list for sure!

Wooden Nativity Scene display


Playmobile Nativity Set- This is one of the kids favorite sets because it has so many small and amazing pieces! But if you have little kids… beware. It has a lot of small and amazing pieces lol.

Soft Finger Puppet Nativity- I am going to coin this set perfect for doubling as a take to Mass toy! This is because it’s A. Soft, so when you drop it during the consecration it doesn’t make any noise, B. Small, so it’s easy to stuff into a mass bag, and C. I find that kids absolutely love little puppets, always more than I think they would! 

Same with Advent stuff- Christmas day is too late, so St. Nicholas day makes the perfect occasion to gift some Advent stuff to your kiddos! 

LEGO Advent Wreath- How cute is this thing?! I know my son loves all things LEGO. This is going in his shoe this year!

Domestic Church Supply Company Advent LEGO wreath


Felt Advent Wreath– We have also had one of these for years! It’s nice, again, to have a set the children can interact with since fire isn’t child friendly. The candles velcro on so you just add one each week. Bonus: Can double as a crown for St. Lucy’s feast day!!! 

Be sure to check out my other resources for celebrating St. Nicholas day with your family here.

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