Wedding Anniversaries Content from the guide to life, the universe and everything

Wedding Anniversaries

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An anniversary is a unique celebration, a moment that symbolises the timelessness of love. As each year passes it recalls the happiness of the past, while creating wonderful new memories for the future.

A Brief History

Before the middle-to-late 1930s, not all wedding anniversaries had a material representing the celebrational year. Only the 1st, and milestone anniversaries such as, 10th, 20th, 25th, 50th and 70th had a material gift suggestion. Further materials for the traditional list were added by an American jewellery association. Why there was a long gap between 50th and 70th and for many years, and why there was no material representing 65th anniversary is not known. Over the years more materials were added and the list up-dated and modernised by various American and British commercial companies.


Traditionally gifts exchanged or from family and friends in the early years of marriage were practical household items to help the couple build up their home. Luxury gifts were given in the later years when the couple were assumed to have most things they needed.

The Power of Paper

The paper gift of the first year's anniversary may look boring at first sight, but it has endless possibilities. Tickets to theatre, opera, night club, or the couples favourite venue. A photograph by a professional photographer. A subscription to a favourite magazine. Shares in a company. Or something unusual. Tickets for a hot air balloon ride. Have a star named after a loved one. These are just a few ideas.

Gift Suggestions

Below is a list of recognised gift suggestions:

 1st  Paper  Clocks 
 2nd  Cotton  China 
 3rd  Leather  Crystal/Glass 
 4th  Linen  Fruit andFlowers/Appliances 
 5th  Wood  Silverware 
 6th  Iron  Sweet and Sugar 
 7th  Copper/Wood  Desk Set 
 8th  Bronze/Pottery  Bronze/Pottery 
 9th  Willow/Copper  Linen/Lace 
 10th  Aluminium/Tin  Leather 
 11th  Steel  Jewellery 
 12th  Silk/Linen  Pearls 
 13th  Lace  Textiles/Fur 
 14th  Ivory  Gold Jewellery 
 15th  Crystal  Watches 
 20th  China  Bone China 
 25th  Silver  Silver 
 30th  Pearl/Ivory  Diamond 
 35th  Coral  Jade 
 40th  Ruby  Ruby 
 45th  Sapphire  Sapphire 
 50th  Gold  Gold 
 55th  Emerald  Emerald 
 60th  Diamond  Diamond 
 65th  Blue Sapphire  Blue Sapphire 
 70th  Platinum  Platinum 

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