1st Wedding Anniversary Gift Ideas

First wedding anniversary ideas
Celadon Home / Etsy

Perhaps you’re still paying off your wedding while you are searching for a first anniversary gift–that doesn’t mean you should skip the occasion. Your marriage is in its infancy and the groundwork you both lay now will help solidify a happy and successful commitment. Putting some extra thought and symbolism into a one-year anniversary gift isn’t a bad idea. Traditionally, the first year is marked with paper. Modern gift lists mark the milestone with clocks.

Traditional Gift Symbolism: Paper

When...MORE the first wedding anniversary approaches, many couples are still in the honeymoon phase and may not have encountered the difficult ebbs and flows that come with marriage. That’s in part why paper has been the traditional gift for the first anniversary for well over 100 years. Paper is both fragile and withstanding, just like the early years of your marriage. Take care of the paper, and it will maintain a story for a lifetime. Handle the paper carelessly, and it will fade, tear, and disintegrate into nothing.

Modern Gift Symbolism: Clock

Clocks speak to relationships in a similar sentiment. Think of how quickly the first year passed by. The clock represents the movement of time, and with time comes good times, change and challenge. Time is precious, just like your relationship. The clock is another reminder to spend time nurturing your relationship for the years to come.

Buying some stationary or a wall clock might seem simple enough, but the nuance is what will set your gift apart. Make your gift as personalized and symbolic as possible. These first anniversary gift ideas will help get you started.

Wedding Vow Art, $123, Celadon Home

 

  • 01 of 08
    1st anniversary gift idea: carnations
    Johner Images / Getty Images

    Sometimes a traditional or modern gift might not work for you. If that’s the case, consider gifting your loved one some carnations. Carnations are the official flower of the first anniversary and represent youthful, passionate love.

     

  • 02 of 08
    1st anniversary gifts -- framed paper
    Emily A Clark

    In Sex and the City, Mr. Big couldn’t find the words to express his love to Carrie, so he used famous love letters instead. If writing doesn’t come naturally and makes you uneasy, consider finding a verse or letter that speaks to your relationship and have it framed.

    If you do write your feelings and they're too personal to put on display, consider hanging in a place where only your loved one would see it every day, like the back of a closet door or in the master bedroom.

    If you wrote your...MORE vows, now would be an ideal time to get those framed and display in a prominent place in the home. Even a framed marriage certificate will work. Just make sure the frame’s glass offers UV protection.

    Love Notes from Emily A Clark

     

  • 03 of 08
    First anniversary gifts -- Gold engraved heart locket
    Isabelle Lafrance Photography / Getty Images

    As far as jewelry goes, gold marks the first wedding anniversary. Gold as a metal symbolizes wealth and prosperity. The color gold symbolizes passion, courage and compassion–qualities any good marriage needs to succeed.

  • 04 of 08
    First anniversary gifts -- paper flowers
    Dorling Kindersley: Dave King / Getty Images

    While fresh flowers won’t last long, paper flowers can. If you’re artsy and creative, consider making a bouquet of paper flowers. Even better if you’re able to fashion them into your spouse’s favorite type of flower.

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  • 05 of 08
    First anniversary gift ideas -- pearl jewelry
    Naomi Kawase / EyeEm / Getty Images

    Pearl is the alternate gemstone for this anniversary, in part because of its fragile yet luminous nature. A pearl can take years to form, adding thin layers until it transforms into something beautiful. Pearls can just as easily be worn away and the nacre coating can detach without proper care. Take care of this pearl jewelry in the same way you should care for your marriage.

  • 06 of 08

    Origami Clock

    1st anniversary gifts - origami clock
    Gifted Papers / Etsy

    This gift can be tediously made or it can be bought, but either way, it’s an idea that is packed with symbolism. Make sure whichever clock design you decide on will fit in with your home decor so you actually want to hang it.

    Origami Clock, $48, Gifted Papers

  • 07 of 08
    First Anniversary Gift Ideas: Wedding photo album and scrap book
    Kathy Quirk-Syvertsen / Getty Images

    It’s easy to let all our pictures live on the computer and our phones, but there’s something so romantic about looking back at old photos as a couple. Since this anniversary is so close to the actual wedding, perhaps now is a good opportunity to finalize all your wedding photos. On the first anniversary, it’s a nice time to celebrate and remember the wedding itself along with your budding relationship.

     

  • 08 of 08
    1st Anniversary Gifts -- Smart Watch / Apple Watch
    Getty Images for Apple / Getty Images

    You could get your spouse a pocket watch, a cuckoo clock, a wall clock and even an alarm clock, but if you want to be entirely practical, gift a modern smart watch if you think your spouse would use it. Pair the gift with a card about the magic of time to make it just a little bit more romantic.

    As Margaret Peters once said:

    Time has a wonderful way of showing us what really matters.