The Origins of Wedding Anniversaries

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The Origins of Wedding Anniversaries

The historical origins of wedding anniversaries date back to the Roman Empire when husbands crowned their wives with a silver wreath on their twenty-fifth anniversary, and a gold wreath on the fiftieth. Commercialisation has led to the addition of more anniversaries being represented by a named gift. Here are a few to get you thinking!

1 year – Paper

A great gift idea for your first anniversary is a signed edition of your partner’s favourite book or a new trend is to have the pages of a book folded into a certain shape, for example, a heart. These can be purchased through a number of companies.

Origins of Wedding Anniversaries

Photo: iStock

2 years – Cotton

A gift of personalised pillow cases, a handmade apron or a nice piece of clothing would be a good idea for your second year. Cotton signifies the comfort and warmth of your relationship

3 years – Leather

A leather wallet or handbag are always never failing gifts for this anniversary as leather has come to represent the durability of marriage

4 years – Silk

How about a new silk scarf or hankies for this anniversary?

5 years – Wood

Wood is strong, long lasting and the perfect representation of your solidified marriage. An engraved jewellery box, a wooden chess set or why not plant a tree together as a special gift for this year!

6 years – Iron

This anniversary gives you the opportunity to exchange gifts as strong as your relationship, like iron bookends or a new fire pit for all those summer evenings in the garden!

7 years – Wool

Wool represents the warmth of your love and comfort in your relationship, what about gloves or a woollen blanket!

8 years – Bronze

Bronze is created by combining two different metals, copper and tin, to make something strong and beautiful, just like a marriage brings two people together into something more. A Bronze figure for your home could be a nice idea!

9 years – Pottery

The traditional gift idea here would be a piece of pottery for the home but why not try a pottery class together for a bit of fun!

10 years – Tin

Symbols of how a long, lasting marriage must be flexible yet durable, tin and aluminium are the traditional gifts for couples celebrating their ten year wedding anniversary

15 years – Crystal

Gone are the days of giving a crystal bowl for this anniversary, most couples don’t collect it in the same way as it would have been collected in earlier years. A good alternative would be crystal jewellery.

Origins of Wedding Anniversaries

Photo: iStock

20 years- China

China symbolises your never ending love along with the timelessness and delicacy of your marriage. A traditional gift would be a china tea set or china platter.

25 years- Silver

Congratulations! The 25th wedding anniversary is a memorable year and a joyous celebration. After a quarter of a century together your relationship is a shining example of love, making silver a fitting theme.

30 years – Pearl

Why not celebrate this amazing achievement with some pearl cufflinks or a piece of jewellery containing pearls!

40 years – Ruby

How about a piece of jewellery containing a ruby or ruby red roses.

50 years – Gold

Make your 50th wedding anniversary shine as golden and bright as your love! Throw a party for all your loved ones and let them see what 50 happy years together looks like!

Origins of Wedding Anniversaries

Photo: iStock

60 years – Diamond

Wow! There are not many couples who make it to this anniversary, so well done!

Origins of Wedding Anniversaries

Photo: iStock

70 years – Platinum

What can I say! Amazing – 70 years together is outstanding!

Paul Crawford

Wedding Photographer Paul Crawford

Paul is married to Patricia (who helped him write these Wedding Hints & Tips posts!!) and the proud Dad to 2 fantastic sons.

He has been a full-time professional photographer since 1990 and been privileged to have been asked to photograph well over 1300 weddings since then.

He worked in his own High Street Photography Studios up until December 2010 when he decided to downsize and work from home. He now splits his time between running Photography Courses and Workshops and Wedding Photography, limiting himself to 30 weddings a year to maintain the quality and high level of customer service to each of his couples.

Based in Ballyclare, Northern Ireland

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