Welcome to the Boutique at House of Marbles’ 2022 Traditional Wedding Anniversary Gift Guide. If you are reading this article, you may be fast approaching an important date and seeking ideas for a special gift to give that represents the commitment you made to your dearest love during your nuptials. The traditional year-by-year wedding anniversary themes provide great inspiration, with materials from paper and sugar, to copper and diamonds providing a focal point to your search for the perfect gift. But what exactly are the traditional anniversary themes and what do they mean? Whilst love birds have been exchanging gifts and trinkets for thousands of years, we have the commercially savvy Victorians to thank for introducing the traditional themes that we know today. They strongly believed in recognizing the investment a couple had made in each other by increasing the value of the gift based on how long they had been married (that, and a little bit cynically, the money they could make by creating marketing campaigns around each anniversary). That said, there is no denying that an anniversary is an important moment in time to celebrate and treating your loved one to a special gift in memory of your special day will win you some much needed brownie points, especially by years 7 or 8 (trust us). So, to help you with your quest, we have put together a list of the best gifts we have to offer that fit with the anniversary themes we know and love. Here we go…
1st Wedding Anniversary: Paper
Just like the early stages of marriage, the threads of paper are fresh and new, and delicate, but when brought together they gather strength and provide a clean sheet, on which the stories of your life can be written and shared for years to come.
A beautiful, themed notebook would make a wonderful paper-based wedding anniversary gift, like this ‘BBC Travel Journal’. Stylish, yet practical and ideal for the couple who are making the most of the honeymoon period. Or, for those simply settled into happily married life, the Daily Dose of Gratitude journal would make the perfect gift. The little notebook helps to cultivate an awareness of the gifts life offers us, count your blessings, and spread the joy, one uplifting quote at a time.
2nd Wedding Anniversary: Cotton
By year two, a marriage will have gathered strength, and yet the bond between two individuals will be more flexible and adaptable – like cotton. Given its versatility, Cotton themed 2nd wedding anniversary gift ideas are usually plentiful. At the Boutique at House of Marbles, we suggest Lime Tree Design his and hers cotton hankies. Hand-made from Liberty Tana Lawn and hand block printed fabric, these classically bold hankies are such good quality, your other half will be whipping them out to dab away tears of joy at family occasions for years to come.
3rd Wedding Anniversary: Leather
Growing in strength, rich in experiences, protective of one other and no longer weak to outside forces – Leather represents all that is good in a three-year-old marriage. When you think of Leather, you automatically think of handbags and wallets, Our stylish Elie Beaumont Crossbody bag and interchangeable strap would make the perfect gift for her, whilst an Ashwood Leather wallet and keyring set would make a practical and long lasting anniversary gift for him.
4th Wedding Anniversary: Fruit and Flowers
Four years after you have said, ‘I do’ and your relationship is positively blooming. Fruit and flowers are the theme of the day, and make the perfect gift for those couples whose marriage is maturing nicely. It’s now that the couple may have a small garden to tend to with flowers of their own. This rustic rake, spade and shovel set with wooden handles and copper finish would make the perfect gift for a green fingered twosome.
5th Wedding Anniversary: Wood
By year five, a marriage is solid, able to stand up against anything the world can throw at it. Wood represents the strength and wisdom this time together has allowed you to gather. By now your significant other has most likely amassed a fair amount of jewellery or other small valuables, and will be crying out for a stylish and practical place to store them! This hand carved and painted wooden jewellery box makes the perfect decorative addition to your home, and has the versatility to suit everyone’s needs, with its removable shelf and large lower compartment. This of course does not have to be exclusively used for jewellery, and would look right at home on either the dressing table or a shelf in the tool shed!
6th Wedding Anniversary: Sugar
After six years of marriage, you might need a little reminder of the sweetness you shared for one another in the early years of your relationship. You may also deserve a little indulgent treat to celebrate just how sweet life is with your other half. If you’re looking for a sweet themed gift that will last longer than a lemon sherbet, how about an LSA mouth-blown glass cake dome on a stand made from sustainably sourced ash and complete with a natural leather hand-knotted toggle. Designed for a tall, layered cake or various cheeses and biscuits.
7th Wedding Anniversary: Wool
Give the gift of wool for a 7th wedding anniversary to represent the warmth and comfort felt for each other at this stage of your relationship. Why not snuggle up together under a warm woollen throw by JJ Textiles? Inspired by the Great British wildlife and natural environment, these throws are perfect for keeping warm on summer evenings or for cosy winter nights in front of the fire.
8th Wedding Anniversary: Salt
An absolute necessity in life, salt represents the flavour you need to keep a long marriage tasty.
As no-one will appreciate a pack of supermarket table salt as a gift (no matter how funny you think you are), here are some more creative ideas for a gorgeous gift that will not only add flavour but bring joy for years to come. A beautiful, dainty silver-plated oyster shell with an equally dainty spoon will make the perfect gift to grace the table of the happy couple. This lovely serving dish from Culinary Concepts would make a brilliant salt dish as it is the same size as a real oyster shell. Stepping away from the kitchen and into the bathroom, how about some sleep enhancing Bath Salts from Bathing Beauty’s award winning Morpheus range. Made from 100% natural ingredients including Lavender and Patchouli, these Bath Salts will satisfy even the most devout environmentalist as they are vegan, cruelty free, palm oil free, plastic free and packaged in a recycled jar.
9th Wedding Anniversary: Copper
As the warmth continues to radiate through the relationship, in year nine we look to Copper as the material that represents heat. By this stage of marriage there is a good chance you might have gifted your wife a fair bit of jewellery, so this copper Ballerina jewellery stand is not only a beautiful gift but will also deliver on a practical level too. And for the male companion, especially those that have developed an interest in fine wines, they would appreciate nothing more that a copper corkscrew as a keepsake or reminder of your celebrations from days gone by.
10th Wedding Anniversary: Tin
Congratulations! You’ve made it to your 10th wedding anniversary. A decade of marriage is well worth celebrating and Tin provides a brilliant and inspiring theme for your relationship at this stage. Durable and impervious to the elements, tin preserves whatever is inside. Before you hop back onto that supermarket website again and pop a tin of beans into your trolley (really… not funny!), here are a couple of gift ideas from the Boutique that would send your loved ones heart into a flutter. Gifting one of our St Eval Candle Tins will give you the chance to set a romantic scene on your anniversary. Perhaps over a special meal or even a relaxing bath. And for the modern man who likes to be pampered too, why not surprise him with a manicure using our Handsome Hands Tin or a facial complete with Damn Handsome Beard Oils and Moustache Grooming Kit (That’s if he has one of course).
15th Wedding Anniversary: Crystal
OK, here’s where the wedding anniversary gifts start to get fancy. You deserve it after 15 years. By now, you see each other clearly, for everything that you are, and the transparency of crystal represents that. Designed and made in Sweden, the Orrefors Carat range of glassware makes the perfect gift for a Crystal wedding anniversary. With inspiration from jewels and gemstones, this lead free crystal glassware range will add a touch of class to any dinner ensemble.
20th Wedding Anniversary: China
For a marriage to last you need to take care of it, just like china, which is the traditional gift for a 20th wedding anniversary. If you have made it this far, this is the perfect gift theme to symbolise how well you have looked after your love over the two decades you have been together. These incredibly delicate lithophane tealight holders may look uninteresting when unlit, but come to life the instant a candle is placed inside. Much like the hidden beauty that marriage can reveal in a partner, the candle brings out the magic from within these stunning porcelain domes.
25th Wedding Anniversary: Silver
As you celebrate a quarter of a century together, you may wish to reflect on how incredibly valuable your other half has become to you and wish to find a gift that truly represents this. No matter how old it is, if taken care of, silver will remain as beautiful as the day it was new – a wonderful sentiment to consider when celebrating your 25th anniversary.
For this one, the gift needs to be special and unique. Our range of handmade silver jewellery by Lucy Kemp is both. Designed and handmade in Cornwall, Lucy Kemp’s textured designs are inspired by the natural surroundings of her home and studio in Hayle. Made from recycled sterling silver, this gift has serious eco credentials as well.
30th Wedding Anniversary: Pearl
In fact, we’re so in love with Lucy Kemp’s jewellery designs, that we have decided to feature her again in our list of top wedding anniversary gift ideas. This time for your pearl anniversary. So, you’ve made it to 30 years, no doubt had some bumps along the way and from the outside, your marriage may not look perfect. But inside, there is a hidden, precious beauty. What could be more fitting than giving a pearl as a reminder that it’s what’s on the inside that counts. This stunning handmade sterling silver oak leaf and pearl pendant necklace by Lucy Kemp will symbolise just that.
40th Wedding Anniversary: Ruby
Hard to come by and highly sought after, much like a 40th wedding anniversary, the rich red ruby signifies the love and passion that you have shown for one another throughout your long and happy marriage. You could take the theme literally, or perhaps you’d like to think outside of the box and use the colour theme as your inspiration. Handmade in Sweden, the deep ruby red of the Maleras poppy bowl or tealight holder would suit the traditional gift theme well, as well as being truly unique and frankly, stunning!
50th Wedding Anniversary: Gold
Surely, gold is the only material that can represent the huge achievement it is to be celebrating 50 years together. Gold stands for strength, wisdom and prosperity, all the things you have built up by sharing a lifetime together. At this stage, the person who has stood next to you for half a century may feel like they have been made just for you. So, only something individually handmade will be good enough. Our stunning range of Black and Sigi gold pendants, bangles and earrings are designed and handmade on a small scale so every piece will vary slightly and therefore, be completely unique in its own right.
60th Wedding Anniversary: Diamond
There is nothing stronger, or more precious than a diamond. Created naturally under extreme pressure, diamonds are one of the most durable materials known to man and therefore, the perfect thing to gift when celebrating the incredible milestone that is your 60th Wedding Anniversary. Although not made from diamond in the traditional sense, these contemporary glass tumblers from LSA have each been hand cut on a diamond wheel, after being individually mouth blown and finished to the highest quality. These make the perfect addition to any drinks cabinet, are best enjoyed with your nearest and dearest, and are a fitting celebration of a long and happy life together.
Now that you ‘ve read our traditional wedding anniversary gift guide and are armed with all the themes and plenty of gift ideas to help you along the way, the only thing we have left to say is congratulations on your anniversary! We hope you enjoy many more years of happily married life together.