Every couple is different and every anniversary gift should be equally unique. Unique anniversary gift ideas are easier to come by than you may have originally thought. Even if you’re running very short on time you will still find unique gift ideas below.
Traditional Anniversary Gifts by Year:
We are all aware that, traditionally, each anniversary has a certain type of gift attributed to it. According to findgift.com this is the modern list of anniversary gifts by year:
Year 1: Paper
Year 2: Cotton
Year 3: Leather
Year 4: Fruit/Flowers
Year 5: Wood
Year 6: Candy/Iron
Year 7: Wool/Copper
Year 8: Bronze/Pottery
Year 9: Pottery/Willow
Year 10: Tin/Aluminum
Year 11: Steel
Year 12: Silk/Linen
Year 13: Lace
Year 14: Ivory
Year 15: Crystal
Year 20: China
Year 25: Silver
Year 30: Pearl
Year 35: Coral
Year 40: Ruby
Year 45: Sapphire
Year 50: Gold
Year 55: Emerald
Year 60: Diamond
While these things may be traditional, the list of course, is not a list you need to stick to religiously… or at all for that. However, it can be fun to put a spin on this list. For instance, year 14, ivory; for a cute joke buy them something nice as well as a bar of ivory soap and proclaim “Year 14 is the year of ivory.” Instead of china for year 20 you can take a trip and state, “Since I couldn’t find any nice China I got you Paris.” You don’t need to take the list literally but it can be fun to play with a bit. Get creative, have a good time. Unique anniversary gift ideas like that are sure to leave a long lasting impact.
The Non-Gift Anniversary Gift
While most everyone loves opening a beautifully wrapped gift, often the best gifts are experiences, not material. Take your spouse out on the town, buy them a spa package, get them tickets to a game, concert or play. My dad hit a home run the year he got my mom pottery lessons (something to remember for years 8 and 9 on the list as well).
If you can’t think of something fun to do try getting nostalgic. Where was your first date? What was something you enjoyed doing before marriage? Whatever you did then, it can be fun to recreate that old feeling. Burn a CD or load your iPod with music from the time you were dating and listen to that on the way to go bowling or watch a movie. Eat at your favorite old burger joint or Chinese food restaurant.
I know that most men want to make their date feel like a princess and really, most women enjoy feeling like a princess; however, at the end of the day, getting all dressed up to go out for an overpriced yet mediocre meal can be a huge let down. While those types of dates are fun for some anniversaries, it can get boring by year five if it’s all you ever do. Mix things up a little and have a great time.
This type of laid back date gift is also great for last minute anniversary gift ideas. If you’ve seemingly lost track of time and didn’t see your anniversary coming, it’s never too late to throw together a casual date. No reservations needed, no fancy clothing required. This is an easy and fun solution for nearly any situation.
The Unique Anniversary Gift
Jewelry, candy, and flowers are all nice things, however, there are certainly more options out there for anniversary gifts. The best thing you can do, to find the best gift, is to pay attention. For a good month or so before you plan on buying the perfect gift you should start opening an ear to cues. Even after a few days you should have a pretty sizeable list of things they might want. A few basic ideas:
Gear for Their Hobby
Music and Movies with Special Meaning
“Pleasure” Gift Basket
A Handmade Family Tree
A Donation to Their Favorite Charity
While many of these items are not very romantic I must reiterate, what’s important are the personal touches and exhibiting that you’ve listened. Don’t buy something because you think that’s what every person wants for their anniversary. Make your loved one feel special not predictable… unless they are predictable, in which case jewelry and flowers or a tie will do nicely. Really though, unique beats the pants off of ordinary any day.
The biggest thing to stay away from is the gag gift. It’s okay to have a gag gift that you present only seconds before you reveal the real gift. A gag gift alone, however, is a huge no no. If you want to guarantee that you have a bad night, that’s the way to do. Even if you are sure that your spouse would enjoy it, you’re probably wrong. I am shocked by how many people love getting gag gifts for birthdays and Christmas but hate them for anniversaries. Use gag gifts with care when it comes to an anniversary.
Whichever direction you choose to go, just remember that a little creativity and fun go a long way. Unique anniversary gift ideas are everywhere.
FindGift.com. “Table of Traditional and Modern Anniversary Gift Ideas” FindGift.com
Author, Heather Rutherfordstone, is the co-founder of Argyle Gifts, LLC at [http://www.argylegifts.com] : selling unique gifts for special occasions of every variety. Check out our gift guide for more information on finding the perfect gift.