Say Happy Anniversary With A Song
Anniversaries mark another year of life and love together and come with a bevy of suggested rituals, from renewing your vows to recreating aspects of your wedding and even types of anniversary presents you should exchange.
Anniversary gifting traditions are meant to take some of the guesswork out of planning your yearly commemorations, but sometimes they just add more confusion than intended. Themes like “paper” for your first and “cotton” for your second can help inspire creativity, but using these abstract ideas in interesting and practical ways can prove to be difficult.
If you’re looking to give your partner a fun and meaningful anniversary gift that’s inspired by these traditions, it helps to unpack the rituals and understand exactly how to get creative with your present.
The Making of a Great Gift
Traditions for anniversary date back to medieval Germany, when couples typically celebrated their 25th and 50th wedding anniversaries with garlands made of silver and gold, respectively. Other anniversaries developed milestone traditions in 1922, when Emily Post created the first anniversary gift guide in her book, Etiquette In Society, outlining gifts for the 1st, 5th, 10th, 15th, 20th, 25th and 50th anniversaries.
For Emily Post, the celebration of a wedding anniversary had less to do with love and more with practicing good manners.
“Good manners reflect something from inside – an innate sense of consideration for others and respect for self,” wrote Post.
Her guidelines with regards to anniversary gifts were meant to encourage acts that show respect for one’s spouse and the life you’ve created together. When you consider your anniversary gift with that goal in mind, you’ll want to gift something that truly means something, with creativity and purpose, to show your partner how much your shared life means to you.
Creativity Made Easy
As time has passed and styles have evolved, other entities amended Post’s gift guide. In 1937, the American National Retail Jeweler Association, now known as Jewelers of America, further expanded on Post’s guide, culminating in the gifting list many recognize today. Even major gifting companies, like Hallmark, have altered the traditional anniversary gifting guide to fit with modern tastes.
In September of 2016, Hallmark released their official wedding anniversary gift list, with creative gift ideas for every year, from the first to the 60th. In their updated list, Hallmark recognized music for the 27th anniversary, showcasing the profound impact of music on couples celebrating their love.
On April 4 of this year, musical icon Beyoncé released a music video for husband Jay Z in honor of the couple’s ninth wedding anniversary. The music video featured never-before-seen home videos and an original song called “Die With You,” which she had previously released for the couple’s seventh anniversary in 2015, highlighting how important music is in their life together.
Of course, we can’t all be queens like Beyoncé, but that doesn’t mean we still can’t turn to music to give something creative and meaningful.
For his 24th anniversary, which American National Retail Jeweler Associated notes as the “year of music,” our friend Rich came to Songfinch to craft a one-of-a-kind gift for his wife to properly celebrate their anniversary with music. Though other gift guides suggested gifting headphones, a favorite album or an actual instrument, Rich wanted to go above and beyond the expected.
“Every year, I try to match the gift to what the traditional gift for that year is; e.g. 3rd anniversary is leather, 9th anniversary is pottery, 20th is porcelain, etc. This year, the 24th anniversary, the gift is ‘Musical Instruments,’” said Rich. “I was stuck. The streak was going to stop. Not now. Just ordered a song.”
After writing down his favorite memories, experiences and inside jokes between him and his wife, choosing a genre and mood and submitting his story, Rich received a high-quality song that brought his love story to life.
It may seem hard to find creative gifts that align with tradition, but your partner will always appreciate the extra thought you put into their present. Personalize the celebration of your love with a gift made just for them and you’ll never fail to win them over every year, no matter the theme.