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15+ Meaningful Gift Ideas for Your First-Anniversary

15+ Meaningful Gift Ideas for Your First-Anniversary

Getting married is, in itself, a milestone. But, as time passes and you celebrate anniversaries, you will come to realize that the real joy lies in reaching each of those milestones along the way.

If you’ve been married for less than a year, chances are you’re thinking about gifts for the first-anniversary.

Traditionally, this is the year of paper gifts, whereas the more modern gift is a clock. If you want to follow those more structured guidelines for your first-anniversary, go right ahead. Tradition is often appreciated, especially in a budding partnership.

In this article, we will look at a wide range of gifts, both traditional and non-traditional, some you have may not have even thought of before! Here are 16 gifts for the first-anniversary.


Best first-anniversary gift ideas for her

Is your wife the picky type, or is she more easy-going when it comes to presents? Does she like expensive, shiny things, or is she more of an “it’s the thought that counts” kind of gal?
Before you purchase anything, you will have to think about these things, and what your wife will actually enjoy. Here are 8 unique gift ideas for the first-anniversary.

01Plane tickets
If you’re a couple that loves to travel, the best thing you can do to surprise her is to get your hands on some plane tickets. They can be for a short flight somewhere domestic, or for a trip to a tropical paradise. It is all up to you to decide.
Before buying these tickets, it would be a good idea to check out her schedule just to see if she has anything going on around your planned dates to jet set.
You could even be sneaky and enlist a friend or family member to ply her for information about her dream vacation so you can make the perfect choice and surprise her.
This gift qualifies as a traditional, first year anniversary gift if you opt for printed tickets. Sure, you could just keep the files digital, but the symbolism is what counts on this particular day of celebration.
An impromptu vacation is an amazing gift that you can share and take advantage of to make some long-lasting memories.
When gifting her with plane tickets, try placing them in an envelope with a card and saying something like:


person holding canda Passport
Photo by Kylie Anderson on Unsplash


“No matter how far you go, always remember to come back home. Happy anniversary, beautiful. For when you won’t accompany her on the trip.”


“Happy 1 year anniversary to my beautiful wife. Paradise awaits us. For when you will join her on the trip.”


02Custom portrait
Is your wife a fan of the arts? Maybe she is big on interior décor? If this sounds like her, she will love this gift.
To pull off a custom portrait, you will first have to find an artist and schedule a day with your wife to get the piece composed.
The sitting can take place in a beautiful park, a spot where the two of you made memories in the past—maybe where you proposed—or even at home in your living room. Decide on a setting that speaks to you and represents your relationship.
A custom portrait can be framed and displayed in your home or in her office. She will treasure this gift for years to come, and she will be able to look back at it and remember your first-anniversary with a fond clarity. A painting or photograph can also qualify as a traditional paper gift.
When presenting her with the portrait, attach a card with a “happy anniversary” message. Here are two examples.


black and white man woman standing beside each other

Photo by Jake Davies on Unsplash


“Happy one-year anniversary, sweetheart. I hope you can look at this portrait in 30 years and still be happy you said ‘I do.’”


“As the years go by, the edges will fray, and the paper will become yellow, but my love for you will never fade. Happy anniversary, my love.”


03Treasure hunt (to a present)
If you are like many men, chances are you didn’t even know that each anniversary has a specific theme. If you already had a gift in mind or have already purchased one, there are still creative ways to stay true to tradition.
Let’s say you got her a necklace or a bath set. These things have nothing to do with paper, right? Well, with a little ingenuity, you can adapt the gift and fulfill the paper anniversary tradition. Try creating a treasure hunt!
This is a great gift for your first-anniversary, and it can make the gift-giving process a little more interesting. A treasure hunt has the added bonus of staying true to the paper theme at no extra cost to you!
If you have never created a treasure hunt, Google has your back. You can even watch a few YouTube videos if you need extra guidance, and you can plan on enlisting the help of friends and family members to make the event extra-special.
The treasure hunt can be small scale, taking place around the house or community, or your clues can span the city—you’ll need help for this one. However big you choose to make it, make sure the activity isn’t too long, and your clues are clear.
The final clue can lead her to a nice restaurant or a surprise party where you can give her the big gift at the end of the night. It is guaranteed that she will remember this gesture for a very long time.
To initiate the treasure hunt, you can say:


person holding brown map

Photo by N. on Unsplash


“Happy anniversary, wifey! I know you always complain and say I can’t take hints, but today is your chance to prove that you can. The first clue is on the bathroom mirror. Happy hunting!”


“I know you like a challenge, so for this anniversary, I’ve decided to make your gift a bit more interesting. Today, you will be doing a treasure hunt to find your gift. Happy anniversary!”



04Paper Flowers
Another great gift for the first-anniversary is paper flowers. This first year is the year of paper and flowers are always a great idea.
You can buy paper flowers online or in most craft shops, but the gesture will mean a whole lot more if you make them yourself. Even if you are not an arts and crafts type of guy, there are tons of tutorials you can watch online to help you make her a beautiful bouquet.
You can even use her favorite colors or design them in the shape of her favorite flower.
Try writing little notes in each flower that she can unravel and read daily. These notes can have funny quotes, love messages, or even pictures of the two of you.
Here are some sweet things you can say in each flower:


origami flower pink red yellow purple
Photo by changeofpace under photo-ac


“Of all the beautiful flowers in the garden, I choose you. Happy anniversary.”


“Love is the flower you must let grow, and I promise to water it daily. Happy first-year anniversary, darling.”


05Love poem
You don’t have to be an award-winning poet to write something meaningful for your wife. As long as it comes from the heart and is specific to your experience, she will appreciate it.
You can even get some help from a talented friend or go to a poetry class/club to get a better idea of how to put your thoughts into words.
And, if you suck terribly at poetry writing, you could always find a nice love poem online and dedicate it to her.
When you have your poem, you can write it on fancy scented paper and seal it in an envelope. When she opens it, offer to read it aloud and watch her heart melt!
Of course, the fragrance won’t last forever, so when it wears off, you can get a frame and hang it in the house.
When giving her this gift for your first-anniversary, you can include a note which says:


man sitting typing on a type writer middle of street

Photo by Matthew LeJune on Unsplash


“I’ve always had trouble putting my thoughts into words, so I took some time to put it into a poem. I hope you love it. Happy anniversary!”


“There are no amount of words that can explain the love I have for you, but I gave it a try anyway. Happy one-year anniversary.”


06Coupon book
Now, this gift for your first-anniversary does not mean coupons for groceries and clothes. In this case, it is a custom-made book that gives your partner a chance to cash in on items such as chores, dates, sex, massages, vacations, shopping sprees, food, classes, or even alone time.
You can add anything you want to the book, plus they are super easy to make.
This is a fun and creative idea which sticks to the paper theme and gives her a chance to get whatever she wants, whenever she wants. It can even help to make new memories.
When gifting her the coupon book, you could say:


memories of the trip tickets

Photo by ChocoLatte under photo-ac


“Happy anniversary, Anna. Here are [insert number of coupons] love coupons. Spend them wisely!”


“For our first-anniversary, I thought I should give you a paper gift you can actually use. I hope you like it.”


07Couple’s journals
Think of this gift for your first-anniversary like a diary where both of you can write down your fondest memories of each other. Then, plan a specific time frame, or perhaps when you run out of pages, to swap journals and read about each other’s experiences in the relationship.
This gives both of you a chance to reflect on what you loved during that time period, and even what you guys will need to work on in the long run.
This is an excellent gift for couples on a tight budget who can’t afford to splurge on a fancy gift for your first-anniversary.
Here are some anniversary messages you can include in the journal or on a card:


winter notebook plants wood table

Photo by suzukaze under photo-ac


“Happy anniversary, Susan. There is nothing I love more than hearing your thoughts. With this journal, I can have them forever.”


“Making memories is important, and I don’t want to forget a thing. Happy anniversary.”



08Best Seller Book
Are you married to a bookworm? Then you know how much she will appreciate a classic paperback or hardcover book. Sure, she could always get the e-book version, but nothing beats the feeling of real pages for an avid reader.
If her favorite author just came out with a new book, you could try to get her a signed copy. You could even try to source an original copy of one of her favorite classics.
She will love a tome as a gift because it shows just how well you know her, and the effort, especially if original copies of the book are hard to get, will warm her heart.
Books also make the perfect gift for the first-anniversary for women who are more reserved and not interested in fanfare.
Here are a few heartfelt notes you can attach to the gift or make into a bookmark.


reading a book and having a coffee on couch person books
Photo by Lars Poeck on Reshot


“Happy one-year anniversary to my sexy nerd. I hope this book means as much to you as you do to me.”


“For your ever hungry, bookish soul…happy anniversary, Love [insert your name].”


Best first-anniversary gifts for him

Giving a man an anniversary present is always fairly simple. Men are generally not very picky when it comes to these things, but that doesn’t mean you should take a gift for your first-anniversary  for granted.
Here are 7 best first-anniversary gifts for him.

09Tickets to the game
If your man loves sports, there’s no way he won’t love tickets to the big game! Splurge on some awesome seats for him, and maybe even a few of his pals.
This is a great gift for the first-anniversary  because it technically qualifies as a paper gift, and it is also something that he will have a great time doing.
When you give the tickets to him, you can say:


08 building night time lights

Photo by Christopher Alvarenga on Unsplash


“Happy anniversary, Robert! Go [insert team name]!”


“Get that old foam finger and jersey out of storage! We have a game to go to tonight! Happy one-year anniversary, honey!”


10Custom office clock
In keeping with tradition, a clock is a great gift option. You can even customize this clock by adding a picture of the two to the time piece’s face.
Clocks symbolize the passing of time and the changes and challenges that come along with it. This gift can also suggest that no measure of time will ever be enough for the two of you.
You can use either of these cute notes when you give him his clock.


white bicycle analog wall clock bricks wall

Photo by Stanislav Kondratiev on Unsplash


“No measure of time with you will ever be long enough. Let’s start with forever. Happy anniversary.”


“Happy first-anniversary to the star of my happily ever after.”



11Custom calendar
Sure, you may be thinking, ‘who uses a physical calendar anymore?’ But, before you write off this idea, read on to find out why a custom calendar could be just the gift you’re looking for.
Your husband, more than likely, has a calendar on his laptop, his phone, in his car, on his smartwatch, and maybe one already on his desk reminding him of all the important things in his life, but does he have a calendar reminding him of you?
Giving him a custom calendar creates an opportunity for you to have a whole photoshoot by yourself—or with the kids—that will offer him a daily reminder of how lucky he is.
You can opt to use preexisting pictures, or you can even book a session with a photographer and prepare some sexy poses. Whatever you are comfortable with, he will love!
When giving him the calendar, you can attach a note that says:


calendar glass hat camera pen cellphone map on table
Photo by Alice on Reshot


“Happy one-year anniversary, hubby! Time will fly, but memories stay forever.”


“Whenever you look at this, remember how much each day we’ve spent together means to you. Happy anniversary.”


Smartwatches are more than just a fashion statement. They have many features and functionalities, which can be extremely useful in everyday life.
For one, they tell the time, but the clock on this gift is digital, so he’ll never worry about straining his eyes to see the hands of the watch—or accidentally reading the time incorrectly as many of us are guilty of.
They also make a great travel buddy and fitness tracker, especially for activities where using a phone would be too cumbersome.
Smartwatches are the perfect gift for a man who is always on the go. He can see all his notifications instantly, take calls, and even entertain himself without draining his phone battery.
When you wrap the gift, you can add a little note saying:


business working technology office screen macbook smartwatch iwatch smart watch person blue sweater

Photo by azu azz on Reshot


“A smartwatch for an even smarter man. Happy first-anniversary.”


“Marrying you was the smartest choice I’ve ever made. Here’s a smartwatch to say, ‘thank you.’ Happy anniversary.”


13Gift card
While some people think a gift card is not very thoughtful, it is actually a genius gift. Your husband can use it to get whatever he wants, and you can avoid that awkward moment when a present falls flat.
This gift card can be for his favorite store, a restaurant, or even an online platform like Amazon that has a wide variety of items to choose from.
This is a perfect gift for the first-anniversary , especially because you’re still in the early stages of really getting to know each other.
With this gift card, you can also say:


adidas gift card

Photo by Christian Wiediger on Unsplash


“I can’t guarantee you that I’ll find the perfect gift, but I can guarantee that I’ll be the perfect wife. Happy first-anniversary, Eric.”


“Happy anniversary to the man of my dreams. Get the gift of your dreams!”


14Engraved watch
Men love watches, and a nice watch can make a man feel like a million bucks. Getting him a timepiece that you know he will love and engraving your anniversary date on it will remind him of you every time he wears it.
A watch is also a gift that will last for a very long time, and it will symbolize the longevity of your marriage.
When wrapping up his watch, you can say:


round silver colored tissot chronograph watch blue green towel

Photo by Bruno van der Kraan on Unsplash


“My love for you is timeless. Happy anniversary.”


“With time, our love for each other will only grow. Here’s to the first-anniversary of many.”



15Personalized wallet
If you have a man that is suave, then you know your gifts will have to be up to par with his entire persona. Personalized items are always a good idea, especially when his initials are inscribed on the gift.
A great personalized gift idea is a wallet. This is something that he will use daily and appreciate deeply.
There are many online sellers that do engravings for free, and many different wallet styles to choose from. From bifold to trifold to cloth and leather, the options really are limitless.
When it’s time to give him his wallet, you can include a heartfelt note to wish him a happy anniversary.


brown leather bifold wallet sunglass blue book
Photo by Simon Rae on Unsplash


“For richer or for poorer. Happy anniversary.”


“It doesn’t matter how much you have in your wallet or in the bank. My love for you is unconditional. Happy first-anniversary.”


16Gold cufflinks
As you already know, the themes for a gift for the first-anniversary  are ‘paper’ and ‘clock.’ However, there are also color and gemstone themes. For the first year, the colors are gold or yellow, and the stone is gold.
This means that gold cufflinks are a perfect match, and they can be worn with any color shirt. You can also have them engraved with the date of your anniversary or his initials to make them unique.
Here are some anniversary messages to go with your gift for the first-anniversary .


person wearing white polo vest black

Photo by Nick Karvounis on Unsplash


“Now that we’re married, you really are cuffed. Happy anniversary, babe.”


“With me, you’ll always be secure. Happy anniversary.”



As you can see, finding a gift for your first-anniversary does not have to be a brain teaser, and it does not have to cause a headache. With 16 gifts to choose from for both him and her, you will have more time to focus on how you plan to make the day special for your partner.