Engagement
& Wedding

Anniversary Gift Guide for Important Milestones

 

The tradition of giving gifts for milestone anniversaries began in Central Europe during Medieval times. If a couple made it to their 25th anniversary, the wife would be given a silver wreath, and on the 50th anniversary, a gold wreath.

Lladro Everlasting Love Porcelain Figurine. #312542

During the Victorian era, more anniversaries were given special designations. For example, wood became the traditional gift for the 5th anniversary, and diamonds for both the 60th and 75th.

As the tradition of giving specific gifts for certain years grew, anniversary gift lists became popular. Today, there are both traditional and modern gifts given for each anniversary. The traditional gift list is based on an excerpt from a book written by Emily Post in 1922. In 1937, the American National Retail Jewelers Association updated and expanded the list with more modern suggestions, and this is the list most commonly used today.

In this guide, you will find an expert rundown of anniversary gift ideas based on the milestone or occasion you're honoring.

 

First Anniversary Gifts for Your Loved One

The one-year anniversary is an important milestone for every couple, so it's essential to choose the right gift. The modern gift for the first anniversary is a clock. A meaningful one-year gift as it symbolizes the passage of time. You can give your husband or wife a precious silver, porcelain, or crystal glass clock to display in the living room or make it a little more personal with a fine watch.

The precious metal for the first year of marriage is gold. Italian gold jewelry, known for its gorgeous golden hue and high-quality designs, is a popular choice but other options such as white or rose gold are also excellent options.

The choice of jewelry is up to you: If your wife is a fashionista, surprise her with a pair of earrings or a stunning statement bracelet to complete her outfits. If she prefers subtle jewelry, a tennis bracelet or a pair of diamond stud earrings. An intricate Byzantine chain is a classic choice, while paper clip jewelry provides a more modern look.

The traditional first-anniversary gift is paper, a material that, with its fragility, symbolizes a new marriage. Of course, you want to accompany paper origami or artwork with a more precious gift that reminds your loved one of your first anniversary throughout your years of marriage.

 

Celebrate Your 10th Marriage Anniversary with Diamonds

When a couple reaches the 10th anniversary, their love has already gone through many highs and lows.

The modern gift for the 10th anniversary is a familiar gem that symbolizes eternal love. You guessed it! It's the diamond! Choose among a wide variety of diamond jewelry, from classic styles such as tennis bracelets and necklaces, studs, and diamond hoops to the latest trends like eternity necklaces and colored diamonds.

For a woman, it's always a smart idea to buy something that pairs nicely with her style of clothing and, most importantly, her other jewelry pieces. A good rule of thumb is choosing the same precious metal as her engagement ring and wedding band. For example, if her wedding band comes in white gold, a pair of white gold diamond earrings are a good choice. Opt for the exact diamond cut as her engagement ring, for a nice matching look, or a completely different one, for a bit of contrast.

The traditional tenth-anniversary gift is aluminum, a sturdy material that symbolizes resilience and durability.

 

Surprise them with Brilliant Sterling Silver Jewelry as a 25th Wedding Anniversary Gift

For the 25th anniversary, an important milestone in anyone's lifetime, the modern and traditional gift is the same: silver. This precious metal symbolizes the long-lasting beauty and harmony required for any marriage to last for 25 years and more.

For this reason, the most common precious metal for 25th-anniversary jewelry gifts is sterling silver. It is considered the highest quality of silver, and jewelers love it because of its beauty.

Sterling silver looks elegant with diamonds, so you can choose to pair it with this gemstone for a gift that symbolizes commitment and love. Alternatively, choose your wife's birthstone for a more colorful gift. Sapphires, blue topaz, and aquamarine are all birthstones in shades of blue that look stunning in silver settings. Sterling silver is very durable, so rings and bracelets are suitable even for women who work with their hands. Since sterling silver is relatively inexpensive compared to white gold or platinum, you can treat the most important woman in your life with a complete jewelry set—for example, matching earrings, a bracelet, and a necklace.

 

For the 30th Wedding Anniversary, Surprise Your Loved One with a Pearl

The traditional gift for the 30th wedding anniversary is the pearl because it symbolizes timelessness and beauty. The modern gift is once again the diamond. Whether you decide to go for the traditional anniversary gift or the modern one, you'll undoubtedly have plenty of options.

A pair of pearl stud earrings is a must-have in the wardrobe of every woman. They go with any outfit, from the most formal workplace suit to everyday leggings and T-shirts. Cultured pearls come in various hues, from white to black and pink, to suit any woman's tastes.

If you opt for diamond jewelry, you'll have plenty of options as well. You could choose a blue, red, or black diamond to differentiate the 30th-anniversary gift from the ones you already gave her on other special occasions. Colored diamonds are as bright as white ones, and they pair well with the most glamorous outfits in a woman's wardrobe.

There are plenty of other colored diamond options as well. Blue diamonds are available in a range of beautiful shades, and red diamonds look stunning set in any precious metal.

 

Choose Ruby for Your (or Your Parents') 40th Wedding Anniversary

The 40th wedding anniversary is definitely a milestone every couple dreams of celebrating. The traditional gift for the occasion is ruby, which has a vibrant red color that symbolizes passion and romance.

This red gemstone looks fantastic with a variety of precious metals, including white and yellow gold. It provides a bold, fashionable look to rings, pendants, and earrings, brightening many skin tones.

A pair of statement earrings with rubies can make any simple outfit, like a black dress, instantly sophisticated. You can also choose jewelry pieces that feature both rubies and diamonds for a fashion statement. The most valuable ruby gemstones come in a vibrant blood red color, but if your loved one prefers a more subtle look, pick a gem in a dark red-purple, pastel pink, or hot pink hue. All ruby jewelry colors pair well with white and yellow gold.

 

Other Anniversaries and Their Modern and Traditional Gifts

In this guide, we've only touched on a few of the milestone anniversaries. However, there is a modern and traditional gift for every wedding anniversary.

Year Jewelry Modern Traditional
1st Gold Jewelry Clocks Paper
2nd Garnet China Cotton
3rd Pearls Crystal/Glass Leather
4th  Blue Topaz Appliances Fruits/Flowers
5th Sapphire Silverware Wood
6th  Amethyst Wood Candy/Iron
7th Onyx Desk Sets Wool/Copper
8th Tourmaline Linen/Lace Bronze/Pottery
9th Lapis Leather Willow/Wicker
10th Diamonds Diamonds Tin/Aluminum
11th Turquoise Fashion Jewelry Steel
12th Jade Pearls Silk/Linen
13th Citrine Textiles Lace
14th Opal Gold Jewelry Gold Jewelry
15th Ruby Watches Crystal
20th  Emerald Platinum Jewelry China
25th Sterling Silver Sterling Silver Sterling Silver
30th Pearls Diamonds Pearls
35th Emerald Jade Coral
40th Ruby Ruby Ruby
45th Sapphire Sapphire Sapphire
50th Gold Gold Gold
55th Alexandrite Emerald Emerald
60th Diamond Diamond Diamond
65th Sapphire Sapphire Sapphire
70th Platinum Platinum Platinum
75th Sapphire Sapphire Sapphire
80th Ruby Ruby Ruby
 

Frequently Asked Questions

What is the modern gift for the 10th wedding anniversary?

The modern gift for the 10th anniversary is the diamond, without a doubt much more glamorous than the traditional gift, aluminum.

I want to give silver to my wife for our 25th anniversary. What are my options?

Sterling silver is the most precious variety of silver, and you can find it in jewelry pieces such as pendants, earrings, rings, and bracelets. You can also pair it with diamonds or colored gemstones like amethyst, sapphire, or topaz.

Which jewelry gift would you recommend for the 50th wedding anniversary?

For the 50th wedding anniversary, both the traditional and modern gift is gold. Choose an Italian gold eternity ring with diamonds and her birthstone, or a gold estate ring or pin that she could wear on special occasions. Of course, classic gold jewelry such as a diamond solitaire pendant or a tennis bracelet is also a popular option. When it comes to gold, the gift-giving options are truly unlimited.