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23 Perfect Traditional and Modern 1st Anniversary Gift Ideas

The other day, I asked the Happy Little Vows Instagram community what year anniversary gifts they wanted me to cover and the first anniversary was overwhelmingly the most common answer. So, it seems a lot of you got married during covid, Congratulations! There are so many fabulous gift ideas for this anniversary and as this is the first anniversary gift you'll give as a couple, it's also super romantic. So, let's get to it.


What are the 1st Anniversary modern and traditional gift themes?

The 1st Anniversary's traditional gift theme is Paper and the modern theme is Clock. Paper and clock gifts give you such a range to choose from. Think paper gifts like a book subscription, star chart of the day you were married, a book of your past love letters, maps to plan a camp or hike together or even a paper scavenger hunt. Clock gifts can be both modern and traditional, with clocks like an Apple Watch, grandfather clock or even some hourglasses for the person who likes to focus their work time.


Check out the 1st Anniversary Gift Ideas on the Gifts By Year section of Happy Little Vows and enjoy the curated list of 1st Anniversary Gift Ideas below!


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1st Anniversary Gift Ideas

Apple Watch (Amazon)

An Apple Watch is a fantastic, no-brainer Clock gift. Useful, practical and a great gadget gift, if they don't have an Apple Watch yet, this is the perfect 1st Anniversary Gift. They'll be able to voice command calls and text message, check emails, even track their fitness and steps.


Star Map (Amazon)

For the romantic. The Star Map shows the stars above from the date, time and location you choose and you can even add a quote. This would be a great way to commemorate the dates of the day you met or your wedding day.


MasterClass (MasterClass)

It's no secret that I am a massive fan of MasterClass. I've gifted it to myself for the past two years AND given it as gifts to friends. If you don't know about MasterClass, I suggest you check it out. With classes from greats like Helen Mirren for acting, Ron Finley for gardening, Sara Blakely for Entrepreneurship, Daniel Pink for Business, Margaret Atwood for writing and Chris Voss for noegotionatlion, to name a few classes I love. It's the perfect gift for anyone who loves to learn and be inspired.


Locket (Blue Nile)

This stunning Rose Gold locket is just beautiful and the perfect Paper gift idea. Just print a couple of photos - your paper - to surprise them when they open the locket to reveal.


Book of the Month (BOTM)

Books are the quintessential paper gift. You can buy a 3, 6 or 12 month subscription from Book Of The Month that curates a list of five new, diverse books per month that they'll be able to choose from, all of them fantastic reads. I own this and ask for it every birthday and Christmas, thats how good it is.


Canon Rebel T7 Camera (Amazon)

Another paper idea. For the one who loves photography, why not gift them them a fantastic camera so they can take incredible photos. The Canon Rebel is an iconic camera they'll cherish.


Modern Stainless Steel Ribbon Wall Clock (Amazon)

This clock, made from stainless steel, is a mid-century modern design that is perfect for the Clock gift and would look stunning in any modern room. I love its sleek style and contrasting red arms.


Paperclip Necklace (Blue Nile)

Paperclip Necklaces are all the rage right now. Simple and elegant, this necklace is the perfect paper gift they can wear every day and comes in yellow, rose or white gold so there's something for everyone.


Waterford Lismore Square Decanter (Amazon)

Get them a decanter for their aged Whiskey (Get it, aged = time = clock). Better yet, gift the decanter and then present them with a great bottle to put in it.


Chuck Taylor Shoes (Amazon)

Ok, so these are a stretch for a paper gift, but hear me out. They're made of canvas, canvas is the paper of art, so I think canvas counts. Plus, everyone needs a great pair of chucks!


Hourglass Set (Amazon)

For the workaholic, gift them this great hourglass set with 30 and 5 minute timers to keep them motivated and help them with time management. It's a great gift for anyone doing the work-from-home thing.


National Geographic Hiking Maps Gift Set (Amazon)

These paper Maps come in a great gift box. This is the perfect gift for those who love the outdoors. This box set features maps of the Appalachian Trail at 2,200 miles, the Pacific Crest Trail at 2,700 miles and the Continental Divide Trail at 3,100 miles. For fun, plan out a surprise camping trip by marking spots out on the map and go camping.


Initial Scrabble Letters (Amazon)

Because letters go on the paper page this counts. These oversized Scrabble Letters will look great on the wall. Get one letter for both of your first initials.


Briggs & Riley Luggage (Amazon)

Luggage is the gift that keeps on giving, your companion through all the journeys you'll take together while you both have the "time" of your lives.


Framed Art (Amazon)

Artwork is super personal and a great paper gift, plus it's a gift they'll display with pride and show for many years to come. Not sure of what art they like? As a sneaky tip, look up their name on Pinterest to see their style and if they mention any art they like, write a note on your phone.


Montblanc Meisterstuck Pen (Amazon)

For the avid writer, get them a pen that means business. And nothings says business more than Montblanc. Super sleek and professional, this pen will be the one they reach for every time.


Painting Set (Amazon)

This kit comes with canvas and art paper, acrylic paints, brushes and two easels. Gift this to the artist in your life.


Dandelion Paperweight (Amazon)

A paperweight is a perfect paper gift to give and a beautiful display piece for anyones work-from-home desk and to help them with organize their paperwork. Made with a real dandelion inside, it's like a whimsical piece of art trapped in time.


Omega Watch (Amazon)

The classic watch is something that will never go out of style and Omega is one of those timeless pieces that collectors dream about. Stylish and sophisticated, this watch will blow them away.


Hinged Framed Photo (Amazon)

A classic frame makes for a wonderful paper gift. For fun, put a photo from when you first met and a photo of your wedding or one of you now.


Polaroid Camera (Amazon)

Photography gifts make great Paper gift ideas and this Polaroid Camera is so much fun. I have taken mind all over the world and love showcasing my the cool polaroids around the house. They'll love taking photos of your next year together and displaying them with retro pride.


Airplane Clock (Amazon)

A mantle clock is one of those old-fashioned items we don't see as much these days, so let's bring them back. Stylish and functional, this Godinger Vintage Airplane Clock will look fabulous on their desk whilst adding a bit of whimsy and fun to remind them not to take life too seriously.


Travel: Egypt

Egypt is known for its papyrus, Egyptian paper. It's also a very romantic place to travel with your signifiant other. The Pyramids and tombs, cruising down the Nile, the wonders of Egypt are tantalizing. You can read all about it in my Egypt travel Must-Sees and Tips on Happy Little Vows.


For more gift 1st Anniversary ideas, checkout the 1st Anniversary Gift Ideas page on Happy Little Vows!


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