Anniversary Gifts By Year: Traditional & Modern Ideas

  • Publication date: 09/15/2023
  • Updated: 09/15/2023

Oh, the magic of anniversaries! Those delightful markers that count our waltzes in the realm of romance and dedication. Each orbit around the sun nudges us to select impeccable wedding anniversary gifts by year. It's more than just the joy of gifting; it's about diving into the essence of your unfolding love tale. Curious about the themes associated with each year of matrimony? Let's set sail on this heartwarming voyage!

What's the Buzz About Milestone Wedding Anniversaries?

Photo by @jenboris

As duos twirl through the pages of their marital journey, some years glow more luminously, representing the tales, adventures, hurdles, and shared victories. These standout anniversaries beckon for a little extra fanfare, steeped in the deep-rooted anniversary gift traditions, offering tokens or symbols that resonate with the heartbeats of time gone by. Venturing into this cherished ritual, each landmark year presents themes echoing the tenacity, depth, and charm of their union. Imagine it as a trip through yesteryears, but with gifts that frame each precious narrative. Ready to embark on this heartwarming expedition through milestones?

Anniversary Gifts By Year: Traditional & Modern Ideas

Photo by @vivianlgrimes

Now, if you've ever scratched your head and wondered, "what is a list of anniversary gifts per year?" or sought after a comprehensive wedding anniversary gift guide, you're in luck! Not only are we serving up some nostalgia with traditional ideas, but we've got a sprinkling of modernity for those who like to keep things spicy!

1-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

First things first, hats off to you for crossing the inaugural year! Year one is all about new beginnings and laying strong foundations. When you look at traditional anniversary gifts, the first year is symbolized by paper. That makes sense, right? Your love story is a blank canvas, waiting to be filled.

Traditional Gift: Paper

Modern Gift: Clock

Color: Gold or Yellow

Metal: Gold

Flower: Carnation

2-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Year two is about building on that foundation, growing, and adjusting to each other's rhythm. And if you're veering towards modern anniversary gifts, you're in for a treat.

Traditional Gift: Cotton

Modern Gift: China

Color: Red

Metal: Garnet

Flower: Lily of the Valley

3-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Leather represents durability and protection. In many cultures, leather has been relied upon to provide shelter and clothing, symbolizing warmth and safety. By the third year of marriage, couples have gotten to know each other's flaws, strengths, and quirks. It's no wonder leather makes for such symbolic anniversary presents at this stage.

Traditional Gift: Leather

Modern Gift: Crystal

Color: White

Metal: Pearl

Flower: Sunflower

4-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

The fourth anniversary is traditionally celebrated with fruit and flowers, symbolizing the blossoming and fruition of the relationship. It represents the sweet, flourishing aspect of a couple's life, showing how their love has grown and blossomed over time. The modern gifts of linen and silk represent the intertwined and interconnected threads of the couple's life journey together. Weighing the options of traditional vs. modern anniversary gifts? The choice is only yours!

Traditional Gift: Fruit or Flowers

Modern Gift: Linen and Silk

Color: Green

Metal: Blue Topaz

Flower: Geranium

5-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Wood symbolizes strength, growth, and longevity. By the fifth year, the roots of the marriage are deep, much like a tree. This milestone represents a relationship that is solid, strong, and with the potential to keep growing. Just as trees weather storms and continue to stand tall, a 5-year marriage has faced challenges and continues to thrive. This milestone screams out for every milestone anniversary gift theme. Dive in!

Traditional Gift: Wood

Modern Gift: Silverware

Color: Blue or Pink

Metal: Sapphire

Flower: Daisy

Photo by @allanzepedaphoto

6-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Iron symbolizes the strength and resilience of a marriage, highlighting the idea that the couple is now more deeply connected and their bond is harder to break. On the sweeter side, candy represents the sweetness that continues to exist and grow in the relationship, indicating that love and care are still very much alive. For those hunting for creative anniversary gift ideas, this one's a treasure trove!

Traditional Gift: Iron

Modern Gift: Candy

Color: Purple

Metal: Amethyst

Flower: Calla

7-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Wool offers protection and warmth. By the seventh year, couples have wrapped each other in comfort, warmth, and security. Similarly, copper is known for its heat conductivity, symbolizing the warmth, chemistry, and passion that exists between the couple. Here's a nudge for those seeking personalized anniversary gifts.

Traditional Gift: Wool or Copper

Modern Gift: Desk Sets

Color: Yellow or Off-white

Metal: Onyx

Flower: Freesia

8-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Bronze, an alloy made by combining two different metals (copper and tin), symbolizes the blending of two lives and the strength that comes from facing life's challenges together. Pottery, molded by hands and fire, represents the couple's ability to mold and shape their relationship, yet remain flexible and adaptive. Whether you're looking for gifts that resonate with your journey or simply seeking every anniversary gift, year eight has something unique!

Traditional Gift: Bronze or Pottery

Modern Gift: Linens or Laces

Color: Bronze

Metal: Tourmaline

Flower: Lilac

9-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Willow, a tree known for its flexibility, represents the ability of a marriage to bend without breaking, to adapt and grow amidst life's challenges. It underscores the importance of flexibility and adaptability in a lasting relationship. Pottery, a repeat from the 8th year, once again symbolizes the couple's journey in shaping their life together.

Traditional Gift: Willow or Pottery

Modern Gift: Leather Goods

Color: Terracotta

Metal: Lapis Lazuli

Flower: Bird of Paradise

10-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Tin or Aluminum might seem ordinary, but they resist rust and corrosion. By the tenth year, a marriage has faced many challenges, yet it hasn't corroded. This anniversary highlights durability and the idea that the bond between the couple has stood the test of time. It's a testament to a relationship that remains resilient, strong, and shiny amidst life's trials. Dive into these anniversary gift ideas by year and find the perfect token for a decade of love.

Traditional Gift: Tin or Aluminum

Modern Gift: Diamond Jewelry

Color: Silver or Blue

Metal: Diamond

Flower: Daffodil

11-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Steel is a symbol of strength and durability. After 11 years together, the relationship has undergone considerable stress and pressure but has emerged even stronger, much like steel. It also signifies the strong foundation that the couple has built and the strength they've gained over the years.

Traditional Gift: Steel

Modern Gift: Fashion Jewelry

Color: Turquoise

Metal: Hematite

Flower: Tulip

12-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Silk and linen are both luxurious and elegant fabrics, indicative of the finer and more comfortable aspects that a relationship begins to enjoy after over a decade together. While silk is smooth and lustrous, representing the seamless beauty of the relationship, linen is durable and lasts the test of time.

Traditional Gift: Silk or Linen

Modern Gift: Pearls

Color: Oyster White

Metal: Jade

Flower: Peony

Photo by @lostinlove_photography

13-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Delicate yet intricate, lace signifies both the beauty and complexity of a couple's intertwined lives by this point in their journey. It's a reminder of the delicate balance between individuality and partnership, and the many shared experiences that create a beautiful tapestry of marriage. Tip: Consider buying a lace dress!

Traditional Gift: Lace

Modern Gift: Furs or Textiles

Color: White

Metal: Citrine

Flower: Chrysanthemum

14-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

While ivory has historically been associated with this anniversary due to its beauty and value, modern couples often avoid it because of ethical reasons related to elephant poaching. Instead, many opt for gold jewelry. Gold is both pure and resilient, symbolizing a relationship that remains untarnished and valuable.

Traditional Gift: Ivory

Modern Gift: Gold Jewelry

Color: Ivory

Metal: Opal

Flower: Dahlia

15-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Crystal is both strong and clear. The 15th year marked by crystal reflects clarity, transparency, and beauty. By now, couples likely understand each other profoundly and share a clarity of purpose in their journey, much like the lucidity of a crystal. As you look back and forward, here's what this anniversary milestone gifts by year has in store:

Traditional Gift: Crystal

Modern Gift: Watches

Color: Red

Metal: Rhodolite

Flower: Rose

16-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Sixteen, a year of renewed energy, passion, and shared adventures. The silver hollowware (like pitchers or bowls) suggests depth and versatility, holding value both in substance and in its capacity to contain.

Traditional Gift: Silver Holloware

Modern Gift: Silver or Gold Gemstones

Color: Silver

Metal: Peridot

Flower: Statice

17-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Furniture stands for stability, functionality, and the home environment the couple has built. After 17 years, it’s about the comfort and security that come with a longstanding partnership, the spaces of warmth they've carved out for each other, and the home they've shaped together.

Traditional Gift: Furniture

Modern Gift: Furniture or Home Décor

Color: Yellow

Metal: Carnelian

Flower: Red Carnation

18-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Porcelain is both delicate and durable, which is emblematic of a relationship after 18 years. It stands for the beauty of a marriage that requires care but can be remarkably resilient when handled with love.

Traditional Gift: Porcelain

Modern Gift: Porcelain or Ceramic Items

Color: Blue

Metal: Cat's Eye

Flower: Calla Lily

19-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Making a comeback from the 8th year, bronze again signifies the blending of two lives into a resilient, enduring alloy. By 19 years, the relationship has undergone numerous transformations and come out stronger for it.

Traditional Gift: Bronze

Modern Gift: Bronze Jewelry or Accessories

Color: Bronze

Metal: Aquamarine

Flower: Lavender

michelle beller.jpg
Photo by Michelle Beller

20-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

China is elegant and refined, yet it requires care to avoid breakage—a beautiful metaphor for two decades of marriage. Meanwhile, platinum is a rare and valuable metal, reflecting the uncommon and invaluable nature of spending two decades in love. It's a nod to enduring commitment, rarity, and the solid bond that's been forged over a score of years. Here's a mix of wedding anniversary gifts: modern & traditional for this milestone.

Traditional Gift: China

Modern Gift: Platinum

Color: Emerald Green or White

Metal: Emerald

Flower: Day Lily

25-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Silver is both radiant and lustrous, representing clarity and brightness. Twenty-five years, or a quarter of a century together, is a remarkable milestone, and silver represents this monumental achievement. Just as silver retains its beauty over time, so does the love between a couple after 25 years.

Traditional Gift: Silver

Modern Gift: Silver

Color: Silver

Metal: Silver

Flower: Iris

30-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

The formation of a pearl requires time, patience, and a little grain of sand to act as an irritant inside an oyster. Similarly, three decades of marriage are bound to have had their challenges, but these difficulties are transformed into something beautiful and treasured, just as an irritant becomes a lustrous pearl. Celebrate this monumental year with these meaningful wedding gifts.

Traditional Gift: Pearl

Modern Gift: Diamond

Color: Green

Metal: Pearl

Flower: Lily

35-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Coral represents protection and support. Found deep in the sea, coral colonies provide shelter and sustenance to myriad marine life forms. After 35 years, a couple's relationship acts as a protective barrier against life's storms, offering refuge and mutual support.

Traditional Gift: Coral

Modern Gift: Jade

Color: Coral

Metal: Jade

Flower: African Violet

40-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Ruby is known for its fiery red hue, signifying passion, love, and undying energy. After four decades together, the burning passion and love between a couple remains vibrant and strong, much like the intense color of a ruby. Celebrate with the best anniversary gifts for couples in 2023.

Traditional Gift: Ruby

Modern Gift: Ruby

Color: Red

Metal: Ruby

Flower: Nasturtium

45-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

The sapphire stands for wisdom, loyalty, and nobility. After 45 years, the relationship is built on deep trust, wisdom gained from shared experiences, and an undying commitment to one another. The vibrant blue of the sapphire represents the depths of understanding and love.

Traditional Gift: Sapphire

Modern Gift: Sapphire

Color: Blue

Metal: Sapphire

Flower: Blue Iris

50-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Celebrating half a century together, gold epitomizes what a 50-year union stands for resilience, timelessness, and unparalleled worth. Just as gold remains uncorroded and retains its glow, so does a relationship that has thrived for 50 golden years. Celebrate half a century of love with these anniversary gifts to honor your milestone.

Traditional Gift: Gold

Modern Gift: Gold

Color: Gold

Metal: Gold

Flower: Yellow Roses or Violets

55-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Emerald symbolizes rebirth and love. As couples approach six decades together, this stone signifies not just the longevity of their relationship but its continuous renewal. Their bond, evergreen and refreshing, mirrors the vibrant green of an emerald.

Traditional Gift: Emerald

Modern Gift: Emerald

Color: Emerald Green

Metal: Alexandrite

Flower: Calla Lily

bailey ann.jpg
Photo by Bailey Ann

60-Year Anniversary Gift Ideas

Diamonds, formed under intense heat and pressure over eons, are both rare and indestructible. Celebrating 60 years, or a diamond jubilee, is a testament to the couple's unbreakable bond formed through life's immense pressures and challenges. It represents endurance, undying love, and a bond that's forever.

Traditional Gift: Diamond

Modern Gift: Diamond

Color: Diamond White

Metal: Diamond

Flower: White Rose

In the tapestry of life, each thread woven with love and commitment adds depth and meaning to the story of two souls journeying together. The tradition of marking these milestones with materials, from paper to diamond, serves as poignant reminders of the joys, challenges, and growth experienced in the union. The every-year anniversary gift isn't just a token of the past; it's a promise for the future, a testament to enduring love, and an affirmation of the journey still to come. As we celebrate these milestones, let's cherish the love stories they represent, recognizing the beauty of a bond that strengthens with each passing year.

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Natali Grace Levine Editor-in-Chief

Manages The Wezoree's content strategy
Writes and edits articles for the Inspiration Blog