Happy Anniversary! If you’re struggling to think of what anniversary gifts to give your spouse this year, we’ve got you covered.

The most important aspect of an anniversary gift is that it’s specific to the person you’re giving it to. Not everyone wants a fancy souffle dish or monogrammed matching sweater. Your gift should show that you know your spouse well and you’re giving from the heart.

Your wedding anniversary is an occasion where you get to celebrate your love – so let’s prioritize that! Your gift should be full of love, thoughtful and speak to your relationship. We encourage you to think outside the box and celebrate your anniversary in a meaningful way, not with another scarf or box of chocolates.

Below we’re sharing 13 heartfelt anniversary gifts we know your spouse will love, plus six gifts you definitely want to stay away from! 

newlywed couple showing off wedding rings
by Emily Nicole Photos

1) Revisit your wedding vows and share new ones

A beautiful and budget-friendly anniversary gift you can give your spouse is the gift of wedding vows, both old and new. Since the whole point of this anniversary is to celebrate your marriage, why not go back to the promises you started this marriage with?

Look back at the vows your exchanged on your wedding day. You can rewatch your wedding video or read from your wedding vow books. You may even want to get your vows framed as part of your anniversary present to each other.

You can also exchange new vows! We love the idea of building on the promises you originally made to your partner each year and renewing your vows to one another.

Check out Officiant Shawn below sharing all about anniversary vows – and the ones he made to his wife after 19 years of marriage!

@young_hip_and_married Writing wedding vows for your partner on each anniversary is a beautiful way to keep the love alive and remind both of you how blessed you are to share another year together. It’s also heartwarming to revisit past vows, seeing how your love has evolved, yet remained constant. I truly recommend this tradition; the benefits are immeasurable. #weddingtiktok #weddingvows #vowrenewal #anniversary #anniversaryideas #marriagegoals ♬ Piano sleep LoFi slow midnight(808930) – Gloveity

2) Put a spin on traditional wedding anniversary gifts

You may know that traditional anniversary gifts have a theme: year one is paper, year two is cotton, and so on. We say, throw out the old traditions and put a new spin on anniversary gifts!

Instead of giving your spouse a piece of cotton, splurge on fancy cotton bed sheets. For leather in year three, consider a leather watch strap and having the watch engraved with your wedding date. Or plan a trip to the leather tanneries of Morocco!

3) Recapture your love with an anniversary photo shoot

We love the idea of doing an annual photo shoot with your partner on your wedding anniversary. What a beautiful way to spend time together, capture your growing love and always have portraits of the two of you to look back on.

So many couples only take professional photos together on their wedding day and never again – or only to celebrate their kids’ milestones. But why not celebrate your own?

Check out how fun an anniversary photo shoot can be below with Erica Miller, Young Hip & Married co-founder and lead elopement photographer.

4) Share an experience together

Even if you love stuff, we can all admit that an experience is better than another thing you have to find a place for in your house. Experiences not only bring more joy than physical stuff, but they also allow you and your partner to make new memories together.

So instead of flowers and bath robes, gift each other something you can go out and do. You could take a cooking class, enjoy a spa day, take a trip to a nearby town or anything else you have on your bucket list.

5) Invest in your relationship

Your wedding anniversary is all about celebrating your relationship and your commitment to one another. What better way to do that than to invest in making your relationship a great one that lasts a lifetime?

One of our favourite ways to invest in a relationship is through couple’s coaching, which is great for nearly and newly married couples who want to build a strong foundation. You could also work with a couple’s counsellor, take classes or read books to improve your relationship skills, or fill out a couple’s journal together.

It might not sound as sexy as a diamond necklace or new cologne, but investing in your relationship is the best way to ensure you have as many future anniversaries to celebrate as possible.

queer couple posing under a bridge on their wedding day
by Amber Leigh Photography

6) Plan for your future

While your wedding anniversary is a celebration of another year of marriage, it’s also a celebration of your years ahead. It’s a great time to look forward and start planning for that big, beautiful future you want.

If you’re travellers, flip through the pages of a Lonely Planet and plan out your dream trip while eating take-out from your favourite country. If you can’t wait to move into your dream home, spend time looking at listings, designing your perfect kitchen or taking a walk through a showroom together.

The best part about planning for your future is there are no limits! Dreaming together brings you closer together and makes your ideal future that much more possible. Plus, it’s a great budget gift option since planning doesn’t have to cost a lot.

7) Take a walk down relationship memory lane

We looked at the future, so now it’s time to look back at the past. This anniversary gift idea can get pretty sentimental, so pack the tissues!

Take a walk down memory lane by reliving the highlights of your relationship. Go for coffee at the cafe where you first met. Plan a picnic at the beach where you got engaged. Pop the cork on the wine bottle you’ve been saving since your wedding day and slow dance to your first dance song.

You could also look back on your favourite memories by scrolling through old photos or rereading past love letters. Many couples like to watch their wedding video or look through their wedding album on their anniversary.

wedding anniversary gifts and cards

8) Surprise your partner

A great way to renew the spark in your relationship is by planning a surprise for your partner on your anniversary. Show them that you’re still spontaneous and can sweep them off their feet! This is especially impactful if you’re not usually the planner in your relationship.

Surprises don’t have to be expensive or grand if that’s not in your budget. Think surprise scavenger hunt around the house rather than first class tickets to Paris. As long as you put in some effort and plan something specifically for your partner, they will appreciate it.

9) Involve your friends and family

For so many couples, their community is a big part of who they are and how they nurture their relationship. If you couldn’t imagine life without your loved ones, why not invite them to celebrate your anniversary with you?

You could plan a huge party for a vow renewal, go out to dinner with your closest people, or host a casual BBQ – whatever works best for you, your group and your budget. Make the event even more meaningful by asking your loved ones to write you words of encouragement for your marriage.

couple and friends toasting after their wedding ceremony with young hip & married
by Erica Miller Photography

10) Quality time > typical anniversary gifts

While we all have different love languages, we encourage you to lean into the love language of quality time on your wedding anniversary. Your anniversary is a special time to connect as a couple, recommit to one another and celebrate another year of marriage. Because this day is so much about you two and your love, it only makes sense that you spend it together.

Carve out time to be with each other on your anniversary and be very intentional about that time. That means phones away! Enjoy a few uninterrupted hours with your partner and remember what made you fall for them in the first place.

11) Give sentimental anniversary gifts that pull at the heartstrings

If you want to follow up that quality time with a physical gift, we suggest something sentimental that only you could create and that your partner will love. While there are lots of anniversary gift options on Etsy, the best anniversary gifts come from the heart.

Put together a photo album of all of your best memories from the last year. Your partner will love that you took the time to remember those moments and that you designed the book yourself.

If you’re crafty or handy, consider building your partner something. It doesn’t have to be perfect, as long as you put time into it and had your partner in mind while creating it.

You could also gift your partner with a gratitude journal that you spent the whole year creating (start now for next year!). Every day, write one thing you love about your partner or one thing you’re grateful to them for. At the end of the year, wrap it up and watch your partner’s heart melt.

Couples photo book

12) Make your anniversary last longer than just one day

While it’s all good to have a romantic anniversary where you talk about your relationship and spend time together, it doesn’t mean much if that only happens once a year. So instead, keep your anniversary celebrations going!

You could do this by planning a series of date nights. Rather than just saying, “Yeah, let’s do a weekly date night,” actually make it happen. Plan out where you’ll go and what you’ll do, make reservations or even purchase gift cards so you commit to going.

Another idea is to sign up for a subscription box with an activity or item you’d both enjoy. For example, a box that delivers new coffee every month could be a fun gift for coffee lovers. You can rank the coffees you receive and spend time catching up over a fresh brew.

You could also sign up for classes to pursue a new or favourite hobby together. This is a great way to make memories together and get out of a rut if you find yourselves spending too many nights watching TV with takeout.

13) Start your own anniversary traditions

We love the idea of starting your own wedding anniversary traditions that you can look forward to every year. Something special just for you two!

This could be as simple as exchanging handwritten cards or eating breakfast in bed. You could go to the same fancy restaurant every year, treat yourselves to a night at the theatre or buy a brand new board game. Whatever the tradition, it should be something meaningful to you two.

newlyweds holding heart shaped balloons
by Erica Miller Photography

Bonus: 6 anniversary gifts NOT to give

Now that we’ve shared 13 anniversary gift ideas that your partner will love, we have to warn you against six anniversary gifts they definitely don’t want to receive!

1) Gifts that are more for you than for them

You know what’s not a good gift? A fancy grilling set for your BBQ if you’re the grill master of the house. Sure, your spouse might enjoy eating the food you make, but we all know this gift is more for you than for them.

2) Practical items you’re passing off as a gift

You may need new toothpaste or winter tires, but a 3-pack of Colgate and a gift card to Jiffy Lube do not an anniversary gift make. Don’t try to pass off practical items for your household as a gift. Even if your spouse is practical, everyone appreciates a bit of romance.

3) Gifts without a card

As wedding officiants, you know we love words. We firmly believe every gift – and certainly every anniversary gift – should be accompanied by a heartfelt card with a handwritten sentiment. Even if you’re not a great writer, your spouse will appreciate you writing a sentence or two about how you feel.

4) Gifts you’re buying because you think you’re supposed to

If you’re only buying a night sky print because every website has one on their list of top anniversary gifts, we encourage you to click “remove from cart” and back away from your device.

Just because something is supposed to be a great anniversary present doesn’t mean it will be for your spouse. Do they even care about astronomy? Do they want another piece of wall art? Really ask yourself if this gift is right for your partner, and not just a generic anniversary gift for someone.

5) Gifts you can’t afford

It’s one thing to be generous and surprise your partner with something luxurious. It’s another thing to go so over budget on your anniversary gift that you can’t afford groceries. Be realistic about what you can afford to spend and talk it over with your partner so everyone’s expectations are managed.

Now that you’re married, it’s important that you make financial decisions together that support your future. Even if you have separate bank accounts, you still have shared goals and a household you both contribute to, so one partner’s financial decisions affects the other.

6) Late gifts

We hope this goes without saying but: Don’t forget your anniversary! No matter how nice your gift is, it won’t mean as much if you give it three days late. All of our anniversary gifts above have one thing in common – they are all thoughtful gifts that prioritize your spouse and your relationship. The easiest way to show someone they’re not a priority is to forget about something important to them.

Write it down on a piece of paper, put it in your calendar and set a reminder so you don’t forget your anniversary! We suggest getting to work on your gift ideas a few weeks in advance so you’re not scrambling to write your card the morning of.

What will you be gifting your spouse with for your next anniversary? Or what was the best anniversary gift you’ve ever received?