Growing up we didn't have a fireplace in our house. But, we never wondered how Santa got in either so my parents never had to worry about answering that question!
For most of my life we just each hung our Christmas stocking in our bedroom. When I was in college my mom found a stocking hanger that had five hooks on it-exactly the number in our family at the time-that you hung on the wall and we finally had a 'place' for our stockings.
When I married my husband I was very excited that his house had a fireplace. It was a beautiful brick fireplace, albeit gas and in the basement but I was happy nonetheless.
We had the standard red/white store bought stockings for the loooooongest time growing up. As we got older we were all gifted with special stockings at one point or another and they still hang in my parents house every year along with new ones for our spouses and children. Yes, Santa fills our stockings there too :)
I was very excited to start a new tradition in my own little family for our daughter's first Christmas. I made a stocking for each of us and next year the new baby will have their own too!