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After the countdown to the wedding is over and wedding blues begin to strike, you'll be able to reminisce each year on your special day, your anniversary.

Each year your wedding anniversary has a different meaning and gift related with it. Initially they were chosen for what they represent, however now there are also modern alternatives intended to help couples secure their lives together.

Are you soon to celebrate your next wedding anniversary and want to know the traditional gift and some examples then look no further you have come to the right place! Take a look at our list of wedding anniversaries, the traditional gifts and the modern alternatives.

1st Anniversary - Paper

The first anniversary gift is paper, this was because weddings can be expensive and people are often still balancing budgets, therefore making the first anniversary present is affordable. It comes from the idea that the first year of marriage is like a blank sheet that needs filling and can be deemed as fragile. A beautiful gift in the form of paper can be lyrics from your first dance onto paper and then framed. Another popular idea is in the form of an experience such as experience days or concert tickets, it will fit the paper criteria if you print the tickets!


The new modern tradition for first anniversary present is clocks!

2nd Anniversary – Cotton

The second anniversary present is cotton, this is believed that because all the threads are woven together they become intertwined just like marriage. A present idea could be a new cotton bedding duvet set or matching cotton robes for you and partner to share and get cozy!

The new modern tradition is china, why not buy a china dinner set to serve these romantic meals on.

3rd Anniversary – Leather

Leather is seen to provide shelter and protect with its durable material. As your marriage matures your relationship becomes much stronger therefore providing a leather present such as a new wallet or handbag is a great way to represent this!

The new modern alternative is crystal or glass.

4th Anniversary – Fruit & Flowers

As your partnership ripens like fruit and your marriage blossoms just like flowers, it makes perfect sense to gift fruit and flowers, who doesn’t like the smell of a fresh bouquet?!


If you’re not a fan of your five a day or you suffer from allergies, the modern equivalent is appliances. How about a coffee machine to keep the energy flowing?


5th Anniversary – Wood

As your marriage continues it is seen as strong like wood and also symbolises wisdom and deep roots that entwined. A perfect gift would be a wooden sign to hang up in your home, something that represents the marriage. Or how about a beautiful wooden picture frame with a photo of your wedding day?

The new modern alternative is silverware.

6th Anniversary – Sugar

As you’ve reached your sixth wedding anniversary life is said to be getting sweeter! A perfect opportunity to indulge in sugery treats. Why not purchase a sweet bouquet or enjoy a wonderful afternoon tea as a gift to celebrate.

The modern alternative to sugar is iron so if your partner doesn't have much of a sweet tooth why not purchase an iron-influenced wall piece, as I’m sure an actually iron for a wedding anniversary present will not go down well.


7th Wedding Anniversary – Copper & Wool

After seven years of marriage, it is seen to be warm and comforting making copper and wool the perfect anniversary gifts. How about purchasing a copper coffee set with a wool throw to enjoy those cosy nights together?


The modern alternative is a desk set, personally I’d stick to tradition on this occasion!


8th Wedding Anniversary – Bronze

Bronze is chosen for eight years of marriage as it is very strong! It’s a mixture of two metals (copper and tin) that come together to result in a strong combined substance. A perfect gift would be a bronze ordainment that presents the couple!


The modern alternative is linen and lace!


9th Wedding Anniversary – Pottery or Willow


This could be interpreted in a few different ways, willow patterned pottery, or separate gifts of pottery and willow. Pottery is moulded by hand and the painstaking process, whereas willow is flexible but strong and can be woven to create beautiful things. A pottery class would be a perfect gift or a willow basket full of treats to enjoy.


Leather is the modern alternative, so if you didn’t get leather gifts for your third anniversary now is the time.



10th Wedding Anniversary – Tin

As the 10th anniversary arrives tin is the material used to celebrate it as it is seen to store and preserve things. A gift example could be a money tin to help save money for precious memories or a metal sign for the house that could be personalised.

If tin isn’t your thing, you might like to know the modern alternative is diamond. What lady would refuse a diamond, as a diamond is a girl’s best friend.

15th Wedding Anniversary – Crystal

Crystal was chosen for its clarity, as a transparent product it represents how the couple see each other clearly after 15 years together. Crystal jewellery will always be a welcome gift.


For those who aren’t a fan of crystal, the modern anniversary alternative is a watch.


20th Wedding Anniversary – China

China can be seen as fragile although when looked after properly it can be beautiful and stand the test of time just like marriage. After reaching two decades together, there will be moments of madness but the marriage survives when looking after each other.

The modern alternative for 20 years marriage is platinum.

25th Wedding Anniversary – Silver

Silver is considered a precious mental and just like marriage if treated right it will continue to shine and gleam. There are many gifts perfect for this occasion such as jewellery and photo frames.

There isn’t a modern alternative for silver, considering how timeless it is!


30th Wedding Anniversary – Pearl

Pearls are the symbol of beauty after three decades together it’s unlikely you’ll appear the same as you did when you first met, but what’s inside counts, just like an oyster.


The modern alternative for 30 years is diamonds.

35th Wedding Anniversary – Coral

Coral is a very precious substance and was once believed to have magical properties to protect against illness and danger. It is still precious and protected today. A gift could be within the reams of the colour coral or cpra; shape inspired.


The modern alternative is jade.


40th Wedding Anniversary – Ruby

Red is a colour often associated with love, and a rich red ruby is the perfect way to symbolise your love. Whether you want to do the traditional anniversary or the modern, look for ruby inspired gifts as the stone is used for both.


45th Wedding Anniversary – Sapphire

Blue sapphires represent loyalty making them luxurious. Give the gift of sapphires to celebrate an impressive 45 years together, as it’s used for traditional and modern anniversary celebrations.


50th Wedding Anniversary – Gold

After a lifetime together, gold is the only one that can do it justice. The most precious metal, gold symbolises prosperity and strength. Again, gold is used for modern and traditional anniversaries so buy your loved one a gold anniversary gift.

55th Wedding Anniversary – Emerald

Green is considered to be the most calming of all colours, and represents growth. After 55 years together your life may not be as hectic as it once was, but you’ve grown together so give emerald or emerald-inspired gifts to recognise that.


60th Anniversary - Diamond

Just like marriage diamonds are hardwearing and flourish under pressure. It is considered to be invincible and is associated with love and wealth.

70th Wedding Anniversary – Platinum

Platinum resists wear and tear. It is incredibly hard to tarnish. It’s one of the rarest metals, making it exclusive and is a symbol of endurance. What better way to describe 70 years of marriage?

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