A guide to wedding anniversary gifts

Celebrating each year of marriage is a romantic ritual that dates way back to the Holy Roman Empire, when husbands crowned their wives with a silver wreath on their twenty-fifth anniversary, and a gold wreath on the fiftieth – hence the terms silver and gold anniversaries. This has continued to this day, but we’ve evolved the gifts over time and included other significant years too.

The key idea behind anniversary gifts is that a long marriage signifies stability, so the greater the milestone, the more ‘stable’ (read: valuable) the reward should be.

The traditional gift for the first anniversary is paper. The thinking behind this is that sacred documents such as your marriage certificate are on paper. This is actually a very versatile gift option – think concert, show or airline tickets, gift vouchers, a book, magazine subscription, or perhaps even something a little sparkly wrapped in paper! If you’re going for the modern interpretation, clocks, you could opt for a beautiful antique clock or perhaps a new watch for yours truly.

The traditional gift theme for 10 years of marriage is tin or aluminium. Both tin and aluminium are flexible and long-lasting, just like a marriage which has lasted for a decade. You might need to get a bit more creative with this, perhaps tin or aluminium ornaments and accessories or items for the home. The modern alternative is diamonds, the most common gift is a diamond eternity ring – commonly given at either a 1st or 10th wedding anniversary, or opt for diamond earrings, a pendant or a bracelet.

Historically, the ruby has been used to enhance romance, devotion and passion. The inner fire of a ruby is thought to represent the burning flame of passion in the hearts of a couple who have been together for 40 years. Rubies are a stunning gemstone and the second hardest only to a diamond. Ruby jewellery is always a popular choice, choose a ring, necklace, bracelet, or pendant.

Year Traditional Modern
1st Paper Clocks
2nd Cotton China
3rd Leather Chrystal/Glass
4th Fruit/Flowers Appliance
5th Wood Silverware
10th Tin/Aluminium Diamond
15th Crystal Watch
20th China Platinum
25th Silver Silver
30th Pearl Diamond
35th Coral Jade
40th Ruby Ruby
45th Sapphire Sapphire
50th Gold Gold
60th Diamond Diamond

We are wedding specialists, see our friendly team for engagement rings, wedding bands, and for your anniversary gifts for years to come.