One of the most popular ways to commemorate wedding anniversary and relationship milestones is by exchanging gifts. Whether you’re celebrating with your spouse, attending a gathering for friends or family, or you just want to commemorate the anniversary in a special way, gifts are a great way to do just that.
But how do you find the best wedding anniversary gift? How do you know that what you’re getting is the perfect option?
That’s the sole reason we created this guide. Our expert team has provided a ton of resources, buying guides, and best of lists to help you pick out the perfect anniversary gift right now! Additionally, we’ve answered some of the most important and pressing questions people have about anniversary gift giving.
If you’re ready to start shopping and gift-giving like a professional, scroll down and let’s get started!
- Anniversary Gifts (Years 1-10)
- Every Traditional Anniversary Gift by Year (Chart)
- What Makes a Great Anniversary Gift
- History of Traditional Anniversary Gifts by Year
- Anniversary Articles and Blogs
- Anniversary Gift FAQ
Anniversary Gifts by Year
While all anniversaries celebrate relatively the same thing, the amount of time you’ve made it means wildly different things. For example, a one year anniversary is special because it’s the first one the two of you have made it to. But on that same token, a 25 year anniversary is special because it’s a major milestone and known as the Silver anniversary.
Below, you’ll find links to our guides on wedding anniversaries and relationship milestones broken down by the year. Each guide not only covers the celebration for marriages and relationships, but it also has some incredible gift guides to help commemorate the occasion.
1 Year Anniversary Gifts
Reaching your one year anniversary is HUGE! Whether that is a dating milestone or your first 12 months of marriage, it’s something to be proud of. It’s also one of the first times in your relationship where there really is no question that giving a gift is probably expected. So, how do you know what to get him or to get her for your one year anniversary? Read on as we outline the traditional one year anniversary gifts and share our favorite picks for the best gifts to commemorate this major relationship milestone.
- 1st Anniversary Stone: Gold
- 1st Anniversary Flower: Carnation
- 1st Anniversary Modern US Gift: Clock
- 1st Anniversary Traditional US Gift: Paper
- 1st Anniversary Traditional UK Gift: Paper
2 Year Anniversary Gifts
If making it one year is awesome, making it two years is at a minimum twice as good! Heck, we think it’s way better than that. If you’ve made it to your two year anniversary, congrats number two! And if you’re searching for the perfect two year anniversary gift, we’ve got you covered. Below, we outline the traditional gifts for the year, as well as a link to our favorites for gifts for her or gifts for him to celebrate your two year anniversary.
- 2nd Anniversary Stone: Garnet or Rose Quartz
- 2nd Anniversary Flower: Lily of the Valley
- 2nd Anniversary Modern US Gift: China
- 2nd Anniversary Traditional US Gift: Cotton
- 2nd Anniversary Traditional UK Gift: Cotton
3 Year Anniversary Gifts
When sports teams three-peat, it’s a big deal. When couples do the same, we think it’s an even BIGGER deal! Ready to celebrate your big day? Make sure you take the time to pick out the best three year wedding anniversary gift (or dating gift) that you can. While your special someone will love you no matter what you get, why not take the time to really wow them with something that will make them feel special. We have all the details and three year anniversary resources you need below.
- 3rd Anniversary Stone: Pearl
- 3rd Anniversary Flower: Sunflower
- 3rd Anniversary Modern US Gift: Crystal or Glass
- 3rd Anniversary Traditional US Gift: Leather
- 3rd Anniversary Traditional UK Gift: Leather
4 Year Anniversary Gifts
When it comes to buying a four year anniversary gift, it can get tricky. You’ve already been through three anniversaries and probably gotten a lot of the things that you both need. So, how do you go about being original and practical while staying within the budget? We’ve got you. If you’d like some help picking out the perfect four year anniversary gift for you spouse or significant other, keep on reading.
- 4th Anniversary Stone: Blue Topaz
- 4th Anniversary Flower: Hydrangea
- 4th Anniversary Modern US Gift: Electric Appliances
- 4th Anniversary Traditional US Gift: Linen and Silk
- 4th Anniversary Traditional UK Gift: Fruit and Flowers
5 Year Anniversary Gifts
There is just something special about multiples of five when it comes to celebrating anniversaries. Even if you and your special someone aren’t regularly big gift givers, the five year anniversary is one of those “multiples of five” where most people at least consider giving a gift. If you’re looking for a list of the best five year anniversary gifts, you can stop your search because we have what you need. Check out the list of traditional five year gifts below, as well as links to the best of the best to make your special someone feel extra special.
- 5th Anniversary Stone: Sapphire or Pink Tourmaline
- 5th Anniversary Flower: Daisy
- 5th Anniversary Modern US Gift: Silverware
- 5th Anniversary Traditional US Gift: Wood
- 5th Anniversary Traditional UK Gift: Wood
6 Year Anniversary Gifts
Coming off the heels of your first major milestone anniversary (outside of the one year), the six year anniversary celebration is a good opportunity to slow down and enjoy your time together. The modern US gift for 6th anniversaries is wood objects with the more traditional option being Iron or sugar if you’re from the UK.
- 6th Anniversary Stone: Amethyst
- 6th Anniversary Flower: Calla Lily
- 6th Anniversary Modern US Gift: Wood Objects
- 6th Anniversary Traditional US Gift: Iron
- 6th Anniversary Traditional UK Gift: Sugar
7 Year Anniversary Gifts
Lucky number seven! We think anytime you reach a relationships milestone isn’t luck at all, but the product of hard work. That being said, why not have a little fun with your 7th wedding anniversary! The year is traditionally marked with an Onyx stone or Freesia flowers. As per traditional 7th anniversary gifts, it’s all about desk sets, pens and pencils, and wool or copper. Looking for the perfect 7th anniversary gift idea? Check our our link below.
- 7th Anniversary Stone: Onyx
- 7th Anniversary Flower: Freesia
- 7th Anniversary Modern US Gift: Desk Sets and Pens
- 7th Anniversary Traditional US Gift: Wool or Copper
- 7th Anniversary Traditional UK Gift: Woolen
8 Year Anniversary Gifts
One of the first anniversary years where we start to get into precious metals for the traditional gifts is the 8th wedding anniversary. When it comes to gift buying, you can keep it traditional with a bronze gift or go a little more modern with some linens or lace. Or if you’re someone who cares more for practical gifts, we have an awesome guide linked below packed with our favorites for 8 year anniversary gifts.
- 8th Anniversary Stone: Tourmaline
- 8th Anniversary Flower: Lilac
- 8th Anniversary Modern US Gift: Linens and Lace
- 8th Anniversary Traditional US Gift: Bronze
- 8th Anniversary Traditional UK Gift: Bronze
9 Year Anniversary Gifts
With another major milestone approaching, your 9th wedding anniversary is still not one to be forgotten, especially when it comes to gift giving. If you’re looking for 9th anniversary gifts for him, wallets, watches, and anything leather (the modern US gift) are easy pickings. For the ladies, you have to be a bit more creative, but there are still tons of great options. Want to see our favorites? Check out our 9th wedding anniversary gift buying guide linked below.
- 9th Anniversary Stone: Lapis Lazuli
- 9th Anniversary Flower: Bird of Paradise
- 9th Anniversary Modern US Gift: Leather
- 9th Anniversary Traditional US Gift: Pottery & Willow
- 9th Anniversary Traditional UK Gift: Pottery & Willow
10 Year Anniversary Gifts
Diamonds are a girl’s best friend? Heck they can be anyone’s best friend, especially as a 10th wedding anniversary gift. While you don’t have to go all out and get diamonds if you don’t want to, it’s a pretty dang popular gift for this decade milestone. If you’re looking for some diamond options or other non-jewelry recommendations for 10th anniversary gifts, check out the information and links we have put together for you here.
- 10th Anniversary Stone: Diamond or Blue Sapphire
- 10th Anniversary Flower: Daffodil
- 10th Anniversary Modern US Gift: Diamond Jewelry
- 10th Anniversary Traditional US Gift: Tin or Aluminum
- 10th Anniversary Traditional UK Gift: Tin
Every Traditional Wedding Anniversary Gift by Year
While we’ve shared some of these in earlier sections, we wanted to give you a complete list of every wedding anniversary gift by year, as well as the stones and flowers that commemorate each milestone. We’ve included the US versions, UK versions, and the traditional and modern options.
|Year||Traditional US Gift||Modern US Gift||Traditional UK Gift||Stone||Flower|
|2||Cotton||China||Cotton||Garnet||Lily of the Valley|
|3||Leather||Crystal or Glass||Leather||Pearl||Sunflower|
|4||Linen and Silk||Electric Appliances||Fruit and Flowers||Blue Topaz||Hydrangea|
|6||Iron||Wood Objects||Sugar||Amethyst||Calla Lily|
|7||Wool or Copper||Desk Sets and Pens||Woolen||Onyx||Freesia|
|8||Bronze||Linens and Lace||Bronze||Tourmaline||Lilac|
|9||Pottery & Willow||Leather||Pottery & Willow||Lapis Lazuli||Bird of Paradise|
|35||Coral or Jade||Jade||Coral||Emerald||None|
|50||Gold||Gold||Gold||Golden Jubilee||Yellow Roses or Violets|
|60||Yellow Diamond||Diamond||Diamond||Diamond Jubilee||None|
What Makes a Great Anniversary Gift
There are literally millions of options when it comes to what you can buy someone for an anniversary gift. And as you might already suspect, not every anniversary gift is created equally. There are some things out there that are incredible, knock your socks off gifts, and then there are some things that may fall a little flat and miss the mark.
Here’s the good news. It’s not a wild goose chase where you’re just guessing. The best wedding anniversary gifts have a lot of the same traits. In the next few sections, we’re going to outline exactly what makes a great gift truly great. No matter if you’re buying a gift for him, for her, for your parents, for friends, or for coworkers, the traits of the greats are the same.
Before you run out and start engraving everything under the sun, no, that’s not what we’re talking about here. Yes personalized wedding gifts are great, but what we are talking about here are gifts that are personal. The best gifts are ones that are carefully selected with the receiver in mind. You might think a gift is awesome but if it’s not something the receiver is going to want, it’s going to miss the mark.
Here are a few questions you can ask yourself to make sure the anniversary gift you selected hits the mark.
- Is the gift just something you think is cool, or will the recipient think it’s great too?
- Will the anniversary gift serve a unique purpose or meet a specific need in the person’s life?
- Is the gift the same thing you get for everyone’s anniversaries? There are some times where this is okay, but just make sure you take a second look with every new situation.
- Is the gift something they mentioned they wanted? Sometimes you don’t get the luxury of knowing what someone wants for an anniversary gift, but if they did mention something—that’s always a safe and easy place to start.
It’s In the Budget
Whether you’re looking for the best wedding anniversary gift for your husband or wife or for friends and family, budget matters. We aren’t saying you should go out trying to get the cheapest thing possible, but you should get something that fits within your budget.
Reaching relationship milestones is about a lot of things, and one of those things is fiscal responsibility. If you get an awesome gift but it sets you back as a family or a couple, that’s not a smart move. Make sure your selection matches up well with your budget.
If you do want to get something a little more expensive, start saving earlier. Or if your anniversary is right around the corner, get something less expensive this year and put the money you saved aside for next year’s anniversary date.
Alright, let’s get real here for a second. If you’re purchasing an anniversary gift for your spouse, the chances are really good that you know what they are okay with and what they aren’t. You know if joke gifts work, you know if intimate gifts are appreciated, and you know what’s most important to them.
When it comes to buying things for someone else, though, you may need to be a little bit more intentional with your thought process. For example, a sexy negligée might be a great wedding anniversary gift for your wife but it’s not a great idea for your friend, family member, or coworker. Additionally gag gifts might not land as well as you might want them to.
Ideally, it’s better to play things conservatively when purchasing anniversary gifts for someone other than your wife or husband. Remember, anniversary gifts to other people don’t just go to your friend—they go to the couple. So, if your friend would find the gift great but their wife or husband wouldn’t—be aware of that.
It’s In the Realm – Appropriateness Continued
There’s one other thing we want to mention when getting a gift for an anniversary, and it ties together appropriateness and budget.
- If you are buying something for your significant other, make sure you discuss how much you’re both going to spend. It’s awkward when one person spends a lot and the other person spends a little.
- If you’re buying something for someone else, consider what they might be able to afford if they were to buy you a gift on your anniversary. There’s nothing wrong with getting something nice for someone else, and there is nothing wrong with spending a lot of money on an anniversary gift. Just take a minute and think if they’re the kind of person that “keeps score” or is going to feel the need to reciprocate on the same level. If they are, consider budget a bit more. If they aren’t, get them what you want!
History of Traditional Anniversary Gifts by Year
The actual act of giving a gift to commemorate the anniversary of something is a tale as old as time. Many sources trace the origination back to Ancient Rome, some back to Ancient China, some to the Victorian area in the UK, and some to Medieval Germany. In other words, it’s a really old tradition and no one really knows where it began.
While the origination of it all is a mystery, the list of traditional gifts for the US is not. In 1859, we saw a list of anniversary gifts appearing in The Old Famer’s Almanac, that showcases a lot of the traditional gifts we see today.
In 1937, the American National Retail Jewelers Association updated their own list of anniversary gifts by year. So, yes, when people say, “Oh anniversary gifts by year seem made up,” they are correct. The gifts were updated on this list because the jeweler’s said that the current list neglected some major sales opportunities. So, the new additions were made up but for the sole purpose of driving more sales. Clever.
Do People Still Buy Traditional Anniversary Gifts Each Year?
The answer to this question is most certainly yes, but not everyone. For people who love tradition (or their husband or wife loves tradition), these options are incredible. Not only do you get some guidance on what to get them, but you get to sound cool when you share the reason behind the type of gift.
However, if you and your special someone are more practical, you can always opt for the modern anniversary gifts by year or just something practical that they’re going to like, want, or need. You are not wrong for getting something practical if you feel like they’re going to like that more!
If you check out our anniversary gift guides, you’ll see that we have options that cover all ends of the spectrum because the right answer here is—to each their own.
Anniversary Articles and Blogs
If you’re looking for some additional resources or information about buying anniversary gifts, celebrating your anniversary, or anything else related to the special day—we have what you’re looking for. Here’s an ever-growing collection of our favorite resources on the topic.
Buying Anniversary Gifts
Since the main focus of this page is all about anniversary gifts and getting the perfect option, we wanted to include some additional resources to help you in the gift-buying process.
Attached to every great gift is usually a card. And the quality of your card (and what you write in it) can be the make or break of an amazing anniversary celebration. Here are some tips and tricks to know exactly what to write in your card this year.
- What to Write in An Anniversary Card to Your Husband
- What to Write in An Anniversary Card to Your Wife
- What to Write in An Anniversary Card to Your Boyfriend
- What to Write in An Anniversary Card to Your Girlfriend
Planning a Celebration
Feel like getting together and celebrating on top of getting a nice gift? We don’t blame you! Whether you’re looking to have a little date out, go to someone else’s anniversary celebration, or plan a big party—here are the detailed resources you need.
- How to Plan An Anniversary Celebration
- How to Plan a 5 Year Anniversary Celebration
- How to Plan a 10 Year Anniversary Celebration
- How to Plan a 25 Year Anniversary Celebration
- Should I Plan an Anniversary Celebration?
- Who Should Make Anniversary Plans?
- What to Wear to an Anniversary Party or Dinner
Your Anniversary Date
If you ever want to see how important your anniversary date is, just forget the date this year and see what happens. Below, you’ll find a set of extremely important resources all about the actual date of your anniversary. We have things to help you determine when your anniversary actually is, free anniversary reminder services, and even some tips in case you’re in the dog house and forgot the big day.
- Anniversary Reminders
- Anniversary vs. Monthiversary
- How Do You Determine Your Anniversary Date?
- How To Get an Anniversary Update
- I Forgot My Anniversary. What Do I Do Now?
Anniversary Gift FAQ
Does every anniversary year have a gift associated with it?
Yes, almost every anniversary year has a traditional gift associated with it on some list. Some of the more common lists have gifts for every year up to the 15th anniversary and jump to every 5 years after that, and some have options for every year all the way to the 25th anniversary and then jumping to every 5 years.
Is there an official list of wedding anniversary gifts?
Technically, the only two “official” lists ever created for wedding anniversary gifts are the 1859 list from The Old Famer’s Almanac and the 1937 list from the American National Retail Jewelers Association. That being said, there are lots of variations of lists out there and there is no “governing body” that decides which is real and which isn’t. The traditional anniversary gifts listed in this guide are the most accurate collection we could find.
Do these anniversary gifts apply to dating or just marriage?
Originally, the first semblance of a list was only designed for married couples. That being said, society has developed in the way it dates, which has opened the door for these gift lists to apply to boyfriends and girlfriends instead of just husbands and wives.
What’s the difference between traditional wedding anniversary gifts and the modern ones?
The traditional anniversary gift list is the classic list derived from the 1859 and 1937 lists. The modern list is a social adaptation of those lists taking into account some of the newer things we have in today’s society. For example, the 4th year modern anniversary gift is electric appliances. Since electricity wasn’t invented until 1879, there’s no way that had a chance to make the 1859 list.
Is a traditional or modern wedding anniversary gift better?
The real answer to this question is neither. It all depends on what the recipient would like more. If they are a big history buff and love sentimental things, a traditional anniversary gift may do a lot better. However, if they are more practical and prefer gifts they can use, a modern gift may be a better idea. Even then, if they aren’t going to like either by year gift, just get them something awesome they’ll actually like and use.