There are many reasons to give close friends a wedding anniversary present. Maybe they’re hosting a vow renewal ceremony on their 10th or 20th wedding anniversary, and you’d like to toast them with a special offering. Perhaps you’re “late” with your wedding gift and now, one year later, you want to present them with a larger gesture to show how much you care. If you and your spouse are good friends with the duo, this celebration is always great excuse to shower them with love and appreciation.
Whatever the reason, wedding planner Lia Bancroft says it is a sweet gesture to give a close friend or family member an anniversary gift for their first wedding anniversary or any other milestone anniversary. This is particularly true of you were part of the wedding party or were the maid of honor or best man. “We see that many close friends give a gift as a nice sentiment or even in replacement of a wedding gift,” she says, highlighting that traditionally, you have up to one year to give the couple a wedding gift.
Meet the Expert
Lia Bancroft is the owner of bespoke, full-service luxury wedding planning firm Lia Bancroft Events. She’s based in Boston, Massachusetts and specializes in coastal weddings along the Eastern seaboard.
For those who want to go the extra friendship mile, you’ll be sure to put a big smile on the faces of the couple. Read on for the best wedding anniversary gifts for friends.
If you’d like to take on Bancroft’s advice for blooms, consider opting for a gorgeous arrangement from POMP Flowers. The brand specializes in hand-raised, sustainably grown flowers and is the vendor for major events like the Rose Bowl and the Tony Awards. Make sure to wish them well on the special occasion of their anniversary in the included gift message.
Price at time of publish: $85+
Honor a couple on their anniversary by making them a custom heart portrait made of 30 photos—choose favorites from their wedding day for a first anniversary gift, or from over the years if they’re celebrating milestone anniversary. This piece is printed on premium archival paper and is available framed (our personal favorites are the effortlessly chic Whitewashed Herringbone or the refined and classic Gilded Wood Frame).
Price at time of publish: $50+
As the saying goes…the couple that cooks together, stays together. Gift them a fun anniversary activity with these meal kits: They can whip up delectable fare, from 20-minute weeknight meals to the “Gourmet Plus” elevated recipes. Their boxes will contain everything they need to make dishes like shrimp and grits, BBQ cheddar pork burgers, vegetarian noodle bowls, and more.
Price at time of publish: $60+
The name of the product says it all: Really Good Boxed Wine. For oenophiles in your inner circle, delight them with this high-quality, sommelier-endorsed vino that comes in a more sustainably packaged format than a traditional bottle of wine (one box is the equivalent of four bottles of wine). Even better— the juice stays fresh for six weeks after opening.
Price at time of publish: $65
Gift the couple a fun experience with this voucher from Tinggly. Delivered instantly via email or by snail mail in a handsomely designed box composed of eco-friendly materials, this gift allows them to pick an activity in 100+ countries. With more than 800 experiences on offer, there’s something for everyone—whether they want to go snorkeling with turtles in Saint John, take cooking classes in Paris, or jump on a helicopter ride in New York City.
Price at time of publish: $209+
Who doesn’t love a nice wind chime? Especially one that comes with free engraving and shipping included? This anniversary gift arrives personalized with the couple’s name, the years they’ve been married, and their wedding date. Crafted out of aluminum with an industrial cord, this product is designed to last for years (just like their bond). For another great anniversary gift for friends, check out 28Collective’s Personalized Anniversary Wooden Heart Display Plaque.
Price at time of publish: $60
Hey, just because they tied the knot shouldn’t mean they closed the door on fun and unexpected date nights. This box gives them plenty of inspiration to plan a creative evening—it include coupons with date prompts, a heart box of kisses, a scented candle, rose petals and the book Real Love: The Art of Mindful Connection by mindfulness expert Sharon Salzberg.
Price at time of publish: $50
Moët Hennessy recently launched a direct-to-consumer site, Our Cellar, where you can buy personalized gifts that are tailored towards entertaining. With this fun choice, they can enjoy a champagne toast on their anniversary with a label that’s personalized with their town or city and its distance to Reims, France, where Veuve Clicquot is based. To round out the gift, take Bancroft’s suggestion of adding monogrammed wine glasses to the gift—they’ll use them for years to come.
Price at time of publish: $80
Elevate a couple’s tea time, morning coffee ritual, or happy hour with these monogrammed wooden coasters. This custom set comes wrapped in a handcrafted wood crate with ribbon, so it’s ready for gifting. They’ll think of you every time they raise a glass or mug.
Price at time of publish: $58
For the couple who’s all about charcuterie plates and wine pairings, this upmarket cheese board is the perfect complement to their collection. It’s great for entertaining, or just a cozy night sampling cheeses and accouterments from their couch. If you’re feeling extra generous, pick out some special cheese varieties and snacks from a local shop to go along with the gift.
Price at time of publish: $155
Show pals how sweet they are with a delicious delivery from fan-favorite Levain Bakery. The New York City-based shop ships their cookies nationwide and offers flavors like Chocolate Chip Walnut, Dark Chocolate Peanut Butter Chip, Oatmeal Raisin, and more. Our vote is their signature cookie assortment so they can sample all four original flavors.
Price at time of publish: $29+
We love Bancroft’s suggestion to transform the couple’s first dance lyrics into wall art. And lo and behold, with the minted + Brides collection, you can pick the lyrics from the couple’s first dance on their wedding day, choose the font, and let design wizards at Minted turn it all into a lovely piece of framed art. Like all of Minted’s framed art offerings, a wide range of classic and specialty frames are available to choose from.
Price at time of publish: $58+
You can’t go wrong with a monogrammed gift when celebrating loved ones’ anniversaries. They’ll love using this classy cocktail napkin set to upgrade a regular meal at home or when they’re entertaining. If you want to add coordinating dinner napkins to round out the gift, this set of Monogramable Hemstitched Dinner Napkins will do the trick.
Price at time of publish: $48
For lovebirds who love to lounge, gift them their soon-to-be favorite blanket for cuddling. This throw from UnHide more than delivers with ultra-soft, machine washable faux fur and a velvety interior. Choose from a variety of muted hues to fit their decor aesthetic.
Price at time of publish: $199
Make their hearts melt on their first anniversary—or any occasion for that matter—with this chic agate picture frame, paired with a favorite photo from their wedding. Available in natural white or blue color ways, it can blends in with variety of modern or classic interior design looks.
Price at time of publish: $49
What to Look for in Wedding Anniversary Gifts for Friends
So how much should you spend? Bancroft emphasizes that an anniversary gift can vary in price, but a good guideline would be to spend $100 or less, adding that her top choices run the gamut from a bouquet of flowers in a crystal vase to a nice bottle of champagne with custom monogrammed wine glasses. And remember that a thoughtful note should always be included.
Anything that is monogrammed or otherwise personalized for the couple makes for an extra noteworthy gift. Remember to allow a little extra time when ordering custom gifts.
Bancroft says that it varies, but you shouldn’t need spend too much on a gift—it’s really the thought that counts. Small, custom gifts can carry a lot of meaning without breaking the bank. “A thoughtful gift might be a nice picture frame with a photo from the wedding day or a custom gift like a home decor sign with their first dance song lyrics on it,” adds Bancroft.
And as for whether or not you have to buy an anniversary gift for your friends, the answer is no. “Although it is nice to give an anniversary gift to a friend, it is not expected nor is it standard,” stresses Bancroft. “If you so choose to do so, it would be really special and is a nod to the special relationship you have with the couple.”
Why Trust Brides
Perri Ormont Blumberg is a travel and lifestyle writer who has written countless product reviews. To write this article, she’s meticulously tested products firsthand, worked with public relation pros, and searched the internet high and low. A former freelance editor and writer for The Knot, she’s also covered weddings and written gift guides for the New York Post, BestProducts.com, and Martha Stewart Weddings.