Look, here’s the situation—my wife and I have been together more than 20 years, which means there have definitely been a couple years in there when an anniversary is rapidly approaching and one of us says, “You good?” followed by, “Sure, I’m good.”
That’s longtime-married speak for, “Hey, life is bonkers, let’s not add random stress by trying to out-gift each other!” So instead, you end up getting pizza from your favorite place and watching a movie you’ve seen a thousand times on the couch. And don’t get me wrong, those fully chill anniversaries can be a godsend.
But, alert alert, you really shouldn’t do that every year. Especially when it’s a milestone!
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Inevitably, there will be moments—and you might have one coming up soon!—when the expectations are a skosh higher. Moments when you need something a bit more thoughtful, meaningful, maybe even a little creative, to give them that perfect little jolt of surprise. Maybe you want them to experience something new, to make them laugh—or to simply remind them just how much you love them. Which is obviously a lot or you wouldn’t have read this far.
So, with that, let’s get to our excellent list of gift recs!
Below you’ll find ideas for your anniversary or another important couple in your life—from sincere to silly, practical to experiential, domestic to global, traditional to modern. Let’s start with a few classic suggestions and then we’ll mix it up a bit.
First things first: Which anniversary is this? Because here is our monumental, best-ever compilation of gifts by year. If you wanna take the paper-cotton-leather-silver kind of approach to commemorate the specific year, THAT has to be your first stop!
A few examples:
- 1st anniversary is paper, so you can’t go wrong with, ahem, a Hallmark card, like one of these. (Did you really think we’d get through this without mentioning cards?) And it doesn’t have to be a traditional message. You could go for something funny, relatable and snort-y, like this. Or, if you have a little more to say, grab one of these stationery sets and get to writing! Need ideas for your love letter? Here you go!
- 5th anniversary is wood, and once you’ve had a second to get all of those wood-related jokes out of your system, you could go simple and get a wood picture frame—put a favorite photo in there from your wedding, an awesome trip you took or the day you adopted your dog or cat. If you wanna get a little more spendy, how about one of those elegant customizable bowls or cutting boards?
- 25th anniversary is silver, so maybe that becomes the entire theme of the gift experience, from our silver gift wrap to some kind of silver jewelry inside, like this Links of Love bracelet. Or you could get a sterling silver home decor item to celebrate your parents or another couple.
Flowers, of course, are also super traditional. You can’t really go wrong. If that’s the route you choose, on its own or in combination with something else, check out some of our flower arrangement ideas based on their traditional meanings.
Can’t decide between a card or a video tribute? Why not both? Whether you’re giving this to your partner or to a couple you’d like to congratulate, this anniversary video card is the perfect way to send a classic greeting card with a current twist.
You could also flip the script and send a card to those who have supported you as a couple! Use a video card like this one to record a funny message, or this one to say “congratulations to YOU” for helping us make it this far!
Maybe you’d just like to go with classic jewelry regardless of the year you’re celebrating! That’s totally OK. There are thousands of options out there depending on price range. One approach is to add a milestone band to an existing ring.
If you would like to keep your ring safely at home—but still want the world to know to “back off everyone, I’m taken!”—you could get a ring-finger piece in a different style and material. (One of my personal favorites is black titanium, and I’m not much of a jewelry person in general.)
OK, enough with the traditional stuff—let’s get to some of our other fun categories!
Is your day-to-day relationship defined less by sweet and thoughtful gestures and more by favorite memes, inside jokes and hilarious movie quotes? Then this is probably the section where you should focus your attention!
- Let’s start with the card. We have a lot of funny card choices for anniversaries, whether you’re celebrating yours or someone else’s. But this card (1) is one of our current favorites for spouse-sending—a perfect way to celebrate a relationship that thrives on that magical combination of good-natured grief and self-awareness. Or if your partner is a legendary corn dog, how about this unique and goofy compliment?
- Board games and puzzles. This fun abstract puzzle (2) is the perfect way to spend an afternoon together while lobbing jokes over the table about how long it’s taking one of you to find all the corner pieces.
- A meme-ory notebook. What’s the most frequently quoted thing in your household? Is it from the movie you’ve watched a thousand times together? Maybe it’s a favorite TikTok or random song one of you made up about laundry or dirty dishes. Keep track of them over the years in a notebook like this one (3) and look back on things that made you smile over the years.
- A beverage-of-your-choice container. Headed out for a fun picnic? This jug (4) seems like the ideal container for a little “grown-up juice.” (We know it says “water jug” but whatever, once you’ve bought it, it’s out of our hands.)
- A silly mug. Can people drink coffee or tea out of boring old mugs from anywhere? Sure. But that’s not you. You would rather give your favorite person or couple one of our hilarious Shoebox mugs, like this dumpster fire mug! Or perhaps you think they’re a kind of a big dill!? You could always just tell them you love them this much. (5)
- A personalizable book. Tell them everything you love about them with a fill-in-the-blank or prompted gift book, like this one (6). (Sure, this one’s for a friend, but c’mon—your spouse is your friend, too, right?)
A few more random and silly thought-starters:
- Are you those people? Get matching pajama sets or underwear!
- Recreate a photo from your first year of marriage—the longer ago, the better! Then frame it, give it or share it.
- Write new, more realistic, incident-based wedding vows that make each other laugh. Things like, “I vow to never again take the last of the really good leftovers without telling you.”
- Put a “Just Married” sign on your car (with an asterisk after the word “just”), then drive around and see what happens.
- What was your Worst Vacation Ever™? You know, that most excellent debacle that you’re able to laugh about now, where there were storms, navigation screw-ups, minor (emphasis on minor) injuries, etc.? Put together a photo book to commemorate it.
- What’s the most frequently quoted thing in your household? Is it from the movie you’ve watched a thousand times together? Maybe it’s a favorite TikTok or random song one of you made up about laundry or dirty dishes. Keep track of them over the years in a notebook or make a custom T-shirt to commemorate your family’s brand of humor.
What’s your collective “schmoop factor?” Is it high enough that passersby would be alarmed at the levels of PDA that you (or the couple you’re celebrating) might show on a park bench? Or that the people who love you and know you best might playfully make a barfing motion when you two leave the room? Then try one of these.
- A sweet, sincere card. We love this card (1)—the casual, conversational but heartfelt message is an excellent choice for the occasion. Maybe add a few heart-and-arrow scribbles on the envelope, like you used to do on the pad by the phone while talking on an old-school landline at your parents’ house.
- Go on an actual date! You remember those, right? From recreating a first date to traveling around the world (don’t panic—we just mean metaphorically, with food), here you’ll find several great ideas for celebrating each other with a night out or in.
- A monogram necklace. If you’re looking for a jewelry option that gives you a little bit of that sweetheart nostalgia vibe, try our pendant necklace (2), a beautiful and versatile gift that features a prominent stamped letter on a round charm.
- A long-lived plant. Flowers are wonderful but they also, you know, die. So if you’d like something that says, “Our love is still a growing and vibrant thing,” get a houseplant that will live for years and put it in this XOXO planter (3).
- A shared journal. Do you think of yourselves as not just well matched but full-on soul mates? Then this journal (4) is definitely for you. Lots of fun questions and prompts, like “the song I wished I’d danced with you to in 7th grade.”
- A book of love letters. If you’re liking the spirit of the journal above but don’t want to add anything yourselves, try this Love Letters book (5), inspired by the popular card line Between You and Me. “Sweet messages from the heart” is putting it mildly here!
- Your favorite photo, in an actual frame. Have that one incredible photo that you both love and keep thinking it shouldn’t only live on your phones? Put it in this “Here’s to Us” frame (6)!
A few more romantic thought-starters:
- Sit down with an actual pen and paper and write an actual love letter to your partner, then physically to go the post office and drop it in a real mailbox. (We love words, what can we say?)
- Write a song and perform it for your partner, even if it’s bad.
- Get matching tattoos!
- Gift vintage jewelry that signifies an era that your partner loves, maybe because of their favorite movie or musical or book.
- Make super cheesy picture collages, complete with stickers and silly captions.
- Recreate a favorite photo of the two of you, then make it an ongoing, yearly thing.
- Re-celebrate a honeymoon without actually traveling there.
- Commission artwork of your home or wedding day.
- Mini book club! Read the same book, then discuss.
- Have a spa day or weekend (duh).
- Make a playlist just for the occasion with nostalgic callback songs.
- Speaking of callbacks, how about a vinyl anniversary?! Buy a turntable and get a couple of records from a long-ago era. (Or even current stuff, some of which is available on vinyl.)
- Was it a tough year? Maybe get something to commemorate it in a good way. (This makes me think of the Algerian love knot from the movie “Casino Royale,” a beautiful tangle that symbolizes how “we’re in this together and I’m here for all of it.”)
So many of the best moments of our lives happen when we’re just hanging out with the ones we love while sharing food we love!
- Speak to your perfect pairing. Once again, let’s start with a card! This donut-themed choice (1) is as cute as it gets.
- Gift a drinkware duo. This lowball and stemless wineglass set (2) is a perfect marriage between one who prefers a cocktail and one who prefers to pop a cork.
- A place for food favorites. From family heirloom recipes to the thing you saw once on a food blog that became your Wednesday night tradition, keep all your favorites in our customizable recipe organizer (3).
- Appeal to their favorite language…food. Forget the official Love Languages for a sec, because shouldn’t food be one of them? This apron (4) certainly thinks so! OK, let’s just say it’s part of receiving gifts.
- A scent to freshen things up. There’s nothing better than this lovely lemon-scented candle (5) to mask whatever might be happening in the kitchen. Like when that salmon was delightful but then the house just smelled fishy.
- A cake stand to display their baking talents. Is your favorite person the one who gets called upon to make everyone’s birthday cake because they’re just that good? Give them a pretty platter or cake stand (6) to show off their seriously sweet skills.
A few more food-related thought-starters:
- Locally made sweets and treats like honey, cookies or chocolates—ya know, because you’re sweet on each other!
- A basket of assorted small gifts for whatever season the anniversary falls in (seasonal snacks, candles, plants, etc.)
- Make or get a cake—maybe even order one from the original wedding baker—and feed each other a slice!
- For a couple that you know loves to cook, a cutting board or bowl with initials is an easy-peasy approach.
- A blender for a blended family (get it?)
- Are you empty nesters now? How about an expensive bottle of rare booze to celebrate the fact that you don’t have to deal with…well, whatever nonsense you were having to deal with!
- Wine tasting, but you don’t have to fly to Napa! It can just be a road trip if there are any vineyards nearby.
- Hoppy anniversary! Tour a brewery and do a tasting flight.
There HAS to be a thing you’ve heard your partner mention in the past few weeks or months—some small everyday luxury or home decor item, tool, or…something? We’d love to help jog your memory. We also have an idea or two for the couples in your circle of friends and family.
- A displayable card. It’s hard to imagine a better one than this unfolding floral bouquet (1) with gold accents. It really makes a statement—like, “Admit it, I’m kind of awesome at picking cards.” Make it celebration decor for a table, mantel or shelf!
- Special mugs. Have a new married couple in your life who still seems like they’re in the honeymoon phase? Raise a toast all over again with a “Mr.” mug and “Mrs.” mug (2). Get one of each, two of one, you do you!
- Simple serving set. If you know a couple who really likes to entertain, this serving tray (3) is a thoughtful way to acknowledge the occasion.
- Adorable decor. The delightfully sweet message on this tea towel (4) will make you go “Aww!” literally every time you look at it. Same with this framed quote. (OK, maybe not every time, but long enough to get you to the next anniversary!)
- Seasonal signage. Maybe you two like to decorate for the season but you’re not giant-inflatables-in-the-yard kinda people. This subtle outdoor sign (5) lets you switch out the “O” in the word “HOME” with fun seasonal icons.
- A cuter cutting board. You know that one cutting board that gets used all the time, even when you have people over? It’s getting pretty scunge-y, isn’t it? You could upgrade with something like this. (6) It even has its own cheese slicer!
- A cozy scent. Do you like apples? (Anyone else suddenly thinking of the “I got her numbah!” scene from “Good Will Hunting”?) This sweet red apple candle (7), which includes a dash of pear, could be the perfect gift for a couple who has everything but whose house sometimes smells just a tiny bit weird and you’re too nice to ever say anything.
A few more household goods thought-starters:
- A pair of personalized mugs with a favorite quote, travel location or photo.
- Inspired by “Firefly Lane,” (friends through the ages), put together a scrapbook of your time together through various eras, especially if you were high school or college sweethearts.
- Treat yourself to new bedding or bed linens.
- Commission a portrait from an artist, for your spouse or for you both.
- Plant a tree or other perennial that you can watch grow over the years.
- One year = one quilt patch with something about that year. Eventually, you’ll have a quilt!
There’s a reason why some of the most memorable movies of all time take place on ocean voyages or beaches or even in a montage of New York’s Central Park. Same reason why there’s usually a trip after a wedding—travelling with someone you love, whether the destination is near or far, is romantic.
- A picturesque card. This one (1) is perfect for celebrating a very outdoorsy couple. (Or just loves cool images of mountains—let’s be honest.)
- Pack in style. Help your spouse get packed and ready for a weekend or longer trip with this distinctive, recycled-cotton travel duffel by Vera Bradley (2).
- A journal for the journey. Need an easy way to kickstart your adventures? Check out this travel journal (3). You could start with a list of places you’d like to visit and then include your thoughts and observations on the actual trip later.
- A way to stay hydrated. You can’t head out for adventures without being properly hydrated or caffeinated. Or both. This Morgan Harper Nichols travel mug (4) with an inspiring quote is the perfect companion for the open road.
- A souvenir frame. Did you stop at Disneyland or Disney World along the way? There’s no better way to capture those memories (or any trip photo) than with this commemorative Mickey Mouse ears frame (5).
- A shared way to put it all together. Lastly, conjure up all kinds of warm, nostalgic thoughts of vacations past with this postcard-and-suitcase-sticker-inspired puzzle (6).
A few more travel- and activity-related thought-starters:
- For a 5th anniversary, celebrate by choosing things that represent where you want to be 5 years from now. For example, a framed print of an aspirational vacation that’s more elaborate than the usual destination.
- Find a car rental company that offers fancy options and splurge on one day in an awesome ride, possibly a convertible if the weather’s nice. (Parking and staring at the stars or making out while sharing a bottle of wine is optional.)
- Schedule an official photo shoot with a photographer—or, if the budget is tight, your smartphone-focused daughter or nephew who somehow always takes great photos. Have them snap your photos somewhere picturesque but close by, like the roof of a downtown building with the skyline in the background.
- Start a new outdoor hobby together—biking, hiking, camping, SCUBA, etc.—then plan the places you’d like to go next to try them out.
- Rekindle the wedding vibes by inviting your bridesmaids/groomsmen over for a dinner party.
- Do a “progressive dinner” starting with apps at your favorite place, the main course at a fancy restaurant and dessert at the neighborhood ice cream parlor.
- Take a day trip with a wild shopping spree at a store where you can’t do much damage to your bank account (thrift store, used bookstore, etc.).
- For a family-friendly activity, how about some kind of trinket or souvenir to remind you of y’all’s best vacation ever? Get everyone their own so they can celebrate, too, then plot your return there soon!
For some people, supporting a cause they believe in is the best gift of all. Here are just a few ways to find something meaningful for your wife, husband, partner, parents or other favorite couple.
- A card that helps care for others. Here’s yet another great choice for an “our anniversary” message—plus, a portion of the proceeds from the purchase of this UNICEF card will help save and protect the world’s most vulnerable children.
- Gifts that give back. Choosing this bracelet or this heart sculpture would be one easy way to help ArtLifting, which supports underrepresented artists impacted by housing insecurity and disabilities, and whose stories and art inspire communities and drive social change.
- Find a favorite charity. You could also purchase your gift from a company with a life-saving mission or otherwise does good for others—perhaps one that your spouse or the couple you’re celebrating has supported in the past.
- Support furry friends. If pets are your thing, buy food and toys for your favorite shelter and bring them by. Be sure to pet some cats and dogs while you’re there! (If your spouse falls in love with a particular pet, you could always offer the gift of adoption. You could also foster!)
- Make a 5K date. Find the next philanthropic run or walk and sign up together. Bonus points if it’s one you’ll need to train for—you can cheer each other on by singing “Gonna Fly Now” from “Rocky” during the tough parts!
We hope our list of anniversary gift ideas has been helpful! If all of this seems overwhelming, free yourself from gift categories and get them something you know they like but don’t usually buy for themselves: a gourmet coffee they love, the dark chocolates from that specialty store downtown, a gift certificate to a clothing store they love or a book they have on hold at the library.
The point is, you might be in a last-minute panic to really nail this anniversary present, but only YOU can know for sure if it’s the right thing for your partner. Good luck out there and happy gifting.
Need more anniversary inspiration? We’ve got it here:
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