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Wedding Anniversary Gifts by Year – Traditional and Modern Gift Ideas

You may be familiar with the concept that each wedding anniversary gift comes with a theme, based on the year. This practice goes as far back as the Middle Ages and is very romantic and special. The value of each wedding anniversary gift increases as the years go on, just as your relationship becomes stronger and stronger. If you’re looking for a summary of each wedding anniversary gift, as well as its meaning, you’ve come to the right place…

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1 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Paper

The symbolism here is that paper is fragile, just like the first year of marriage. But, if taken care of properly, it can last a lifetime!

Modern: Clocks

Time is precious! Clocks represent the passing of time and all the changes and challenges that come with it.

 

2 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Cotton

The woven threads of cotton symbolise how you become more interconnected as time goes on. You also learn to be more flexible!

Modern: China

China is both strong and delicate, indicating the strengths and weaknesses of the relationship.

 

3 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Leather

Just like marriage and the home you build, leather represents shelter and security for the third year.

Modern: Crystal or Glass

Glass and crystal reflect light and beauty!

 

4 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Fruit or Flowers

By your fourth anniversary, your relationship has fully bloomed! This is why we give flowers or ripe fruit.

Modern: Appliances

Electrical appliances signify how settled you feel in your relationship.

 

5 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Wood

Just like a tree, you’ve sprouted roots and together, you can endure anything!

Modern: Silverware

The meals you’ve shared and will continue to share are best enjoyed with beautiful silverware.

 

6 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Iron

Iron is strong and marks the strength of the bond you have built.

Modern: Wood Objects

Similar to the traditional five year gift, wood symbolises your resilience.

 

7 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Copper or Wool

Metal creates heat, just like the warmth you give each other! And wool is just cozy!

Modern: Desk Sets

Giving a desk set brings a touch of home to their work space.

 

8 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Bronze or Pottery

Bronze indicates strength and symbolises your relationship getting stronger!

Modern: Linen or Lace

These are both delicate and refined, just like love!

 

9 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Willow or Pottery

Willow demonstrates flexibility, and so does pottery! Just like clay, marriage is formed and shaped over time into something beautiful.

Modern: Leather

Just like the traditional three year gift, leather symbolises protection and how it endures.

 

10 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Tin

Tin won’t rust or wear down! The preservation symbolises how every successful marriage requires flexibility.

Modern: Diamond Jewellery

After a decade, your marriage is as beautiful as a piece of diamond jewellery.

 

11 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Steel

Just as steel is strong, by your 11th year, nothing can break your bond.

Modern: Fashion Jewellery

It’s something they can wear each day, so they’ll always remember the sentiment when they put it on.

 

12 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Silk or Linen

Home is where the heart is! So these two home decor staples represent the life you’ve built together.

Modern: Pearl

As they say, finding a good pearl is like finding hidden treasure, just like how you found the love of your life.

 

13 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Lace

Lace is elegant and beautiful, representing the sanctity of marriage.

Modern: Textiles or Faux Furs

These different fabrics signify the comfort and warmth of being married for 13 years.

 

14 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Ivory

Ivory symbolises luck and protection, and originates from Hindu mythology.

Modern: Gold Jewellery

The meaning behind gold jewellery is unification, eternity and perfection.

 

15 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Crystal

Crystal is both delicate and sturdy, just like your marriage.

Modern: Watches

A watch or timepiece symbolises the passing of time and the years you’ve spent together and will spend together.

16 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Wax

Your relationship has an incredible spark, just like that of a lit candle.

Modern: Silver Holloware

Silver holloware is anything related to the dinner table that isn’t silverware. It symbolises unity, as you will enjoy it when you sit down to eat together.

 

17 Year Anniversary

Traditional and Modern: Furniture

A gift of furniture demonstrates the security, comfort and familiarity of marriage.

 

18 Year Anniversary

Traditional and Modern: Porcelain

Porcelain is elegant, refined and delicate. This signifies the hard work you’ve already put into your marriage and a reminder to continue to handle your relationship with care.

 

29 Year Anniversary

Traditional and Modern: Bronze

Bronze demonstrates how your relationship has grown stronger. It also represents the health in your marriage despite tough times.

20 Year Anniversary

Traditional: China

Just like the delicate and fragile nature of being in love, china shows how you need to look after and handle your marriage carefully.

Modern: Platinum

Platinum can get through thick and thin, just like your 20 year marriage.

 

25 Year Anniversary

Traditional and Modern: Sterling Silver

You may know that 25 years is known as the “silver anniversary” and one that is worth celebrating with a precious and valuable metal.

30 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Pearl

Pearls are precious and represent the hidden beauty of a marriage that is long-lasting with maturity.

Modern: Diamond

A diamond is long-lasting, beautiful and strong.

35 Year Anniversary

Traditional: Coral

Coral from the ocean is said to have magical healing powers that shield you from harm, just like the love you have protects your marriage.

Modern: Jade

Jade signifies luck, wealth, wisdom and passionate love.

40 Year Anniversary

Traditional and Modern: Ruby

It is said that rubies hold a flame that never burns out, just like your commitment and love after 40 years.

45 Year Anniversary

Traditional and Modern: Sapphire

Sapphire is associated with royalty and demonstrates the longevity of your marriage.

50 Year Anniversary

Traditional and Modern: Gold

This important milestone is known as the “golden anniversary” and demonstrates the prosperity, wisdom and strength of a long-standing marriage.

55 Year Anniversary

Traditional and Modern: Emerald

Emeralds signify true love as well as devotion and adoration.

60 Year Anniversary

Traditional and Modern: Diamond

After 60 years of marriage, celebrate with a stone that represents the unconquerable and enduring love.

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Kelly Jane Hartmann

Kelly is a former wedding planner and a lover of anything pink. She believes that any bride can plan her own wedding, with a few tips and helpful tools.

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