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Creative First Anniversary Gift Ideas

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Looking for the perfect anniversary gift for your first wedding anniversary? Check out this list of creative ideas for your spouse for 1 year of marriage!

Jessica Bishop Headshot

You’ve said your vows, unpacked all your gifts, written your thank you notes and now a full year has gone by! It’s time to celebrate this major milestone! If you’re looking for the perfect wedding anniversary gift for your first year as a married couple, you’ve come to the right place. We’ve rounded up a selection of our favorite unique first wedding anniversary gift ideas for your partner.

What is a traditional 1 year anniversary gift?

Did you know that the traditional first wedding anniversary gift is paper? No one really knows the exact origin but it is believed to have originated in Victorian times. Even etiquette queen herself, Emily Post, in her famous 1922 Etiquette: in Society, in Business, in Politics and at Home lists 8 major anniversary years with present suggestions.

Paper continues to be the standard over 100 years later for first anniversary gifts.  In keeping with tradition and etiquette, we’ve rounded up 10 creative and unique paper anniversary gift ideas for you to surprise your sweetie.  Any of these items will be a beautiful keepsake for you and your spouse to cherish throughout your relationship.

You want your one year anniversary gift to be something meaningful and special as a reminder of the vows you exchanged on your wedding day. One way to make a gift more memorable is to choose something handmade or custom — that’s why we love sharing gift ideas for your partner from Etsy! 

Unique 1st Wedding Anniversary Gifts – Paper Anniversary Gift Ideas

Personalizing your 1st wedding anniversary gifts is easy. Just include details about your wedding day, your relationship, or your personalities into your choice. Consider incorporating your wedding date, your married monogram, your wedding vows, or the lyrics from your first dance song into the gift for a truly personal and meaningful touch. Check out our first wedding anniversary gift picks below from some of our favorite Etsy sellers.

Gift Ideas for Your First Wedding Anniversary

The first wedding anniversary is traditionally celebrated with paper. Here is a list of creative paper presents to consider for the special day.


Floral Paper Art Paper Anniversary Gift

LilacAndVinePaperCo  $45

Celebrating your first anniversary and looking for that one-of-a-kind paper gift? Want to personalize a room with custom artwork? This beautiful hand-cut paper-cut of the initial, letter, or number of your choice is a perfect choice.


His & Her Wedding Vow Art First Anniversary Gift

Filterity   $22.47

This digital file is the perfect template for minimalist and modern wedding vows art. Fully editable – easily personalize and download within minutes! Print at home, put in a beautiful frame or have it custom framed and viola-you have the perfect first anniversary present.

Etsy-OurLoveTag-Custom-Star Map-First-Anniversary-Gift

Custom Star Map First Anniversary Gift for Couples

OurLoveTag  $40.50

This custom star map is such a romantic way to celebrate your first anniversary. Pick the night you met, the day you proposed or even your wedding day and forever capture the night sky when your love was in bloom. Choose from a digital file, printed only or framed art.


Our Story Watercolor First Anniversary Painting

GentleRoad $155

Celebrate your anniversary with a custom love story, capturing all your most treasured moments in one beautiful piece of art! Include the places and moments most meaningful to you. This makes a unique and thoughtful wedding or anniversary gift, whether for first-anniversary gift ideas, 10th anniversary, 50th anniversary.


1st Anniversary Book Folding Art Gift

EllensCraftsStudio  $49.99

Book arts are made by carefully folding the individual pages of a book or journal to spell the word. You can customize this gift with your wedding date, married initials, or a simple I love you.


Heart Paper Art Map Anniversary Present

cartographika $97.75

A vintage map art print digitally customized to your choice of locations in the world, mounted and framed in a natural, white or black wooden frame. You can choose two locations and it will be customized into a unique heart shaped book fold design to give the appearance of an open book with one map on each half. This personalized custom print is ideal for the first wedding anniversary.


Paper Origami Wedding Couple Framed Wall Art Decor

paintandpapercraft $79.81+

Turn your wedding day outfits into paper works of art for a unique and creative twist on a paper wedding anniversary gift.


Custom Song Lyrics with Photo Art

EmmaAndTheBean $58.49

Turn your favorite song lyrics and photo into a personalized framed piece of art! This personalized wedding song lyric art print showcases custom lyrics and photo with names and a date. Perfect framed present for a unique first anniversary gift! Printed on high quality, textured watercolor paper!


Custom Song Lyric Paper Bouquet

TreeTownPaper $68

This beautiful bouquet of paper flowers can be made with your wedding song lyrics, sheet music, poem, or your wedding vows. The bouquet flowers are made to look like roses, kusudama flowers, a dahlia and a wild rose. The flowers are carefully assembled by hand and put on green flexible stems perfect to showcase your eternal love with this never dying floral bouquet.


Hand Drawn Sketch of You and Your Partner

OliFineArt $69.69+

Looking for a truly custom 1st-anniversary gift idea? Have a hand-drawn portrait sketch created of you and your partner from your wedding day!


Personalized First Anniversary Comic Book

AJPersonalizedComics   $29.99

What better gift to commemorate your first wedding anniversary than with a personalized comic book to carry on with the paper theme? It makes for a great gift for you to immortalize your favorite memories together, relive the story of how you met, or simply write an ode to someone special as a unique gift to him or her!


Anniversary Journal

DuncanandStone  $45

This Duncan & Stone Anniversary Journal will help you capture a snapshot of your marriage memories that you will cherish for a lifetime. Starting with the details of how you met and moving through dating and engagement, the rest of the book will highlight the best moments of each year through your 70th anniversary.


Soundwave Paper Anniversary Art

RindleWaves  $70

Take a special piece of audio or sound to you and your spouse and have it converted to a visual piece of art. The sky’s the limit on design options, colors, and sound to use. Your favorite song, wedding vows, inside joke, poem, unborn baby heartbeat, a voicemail of a lost loved one … if you can hear it, it can be a visual piece of art.


Paper Flower Ornament

KarasVineyardWedding  $49

Celebrate your first year of marriage by giving a traditional “paper” gift … with a gorgeous twist! This beautiful paper flower wedding ornament can come in five colors and be customized with your initials and wedding date or anniversary date.


Letters to my Husband Journal

TheCozyComfyHome  $29.95

The perfect way to express your heartfelt thoughts and feelings to your significant other in this cherished wedding notebook keepsake. This journal comes with 50 lined paper pages allowing you ample space to pen that heartfelt special message to your loved one for the perfect first wedding anniversary gift.


Framed Sheet Music

AllThingsCottonPaper $80

Let your wedding song, first dance song, or any special song be turned into a keepsake. Your song notes and frame will be printed on homemade cotton paper and framed in the style of your choice with personalized details like your name and wedding date to remember this major milestone. 


Custom Newspaper Poster

CapturePerfectStudio $16.14

This digital download anniversary poster is designed to look like an old newspaper which is slightly worn and distressed, giving it a genuine look. This will make an amazing anniversary gift or home decor item.


Anniversary Milestone Cards

WarwickSunday $24

These one year milestone wedding cards are intended to celebrate each monthly milestone during your first year of marriage, plus some other special moments as well (8 bonus cards included)! These mini cards are perfect for taking a monthly picture with your partner for each milestone.


Photo Bottle Anniversary Gift

EdgeInspired  $18.31

This is such a fun spin on the traditional paper anniversary gift. Take three of your favorite photos from your first year of marriage or wedding day and have them turned into photo booth paper with a special message and placed in a tiny bottle. This keepsake will be a favorite piece of home decor for years to come.


Paper Cut Luminary 1st Anniversary Gift

BaloolahB $15.75

These personalized paper cut lanterns make a gorgeous decoration for the one year anniversary meal or party. Place these over a battery-operated tea light and watch it glow like your romance.

 More Paper Anniversary Gift Ideas

Printed Wedding Photos for Your 1st Wedding Anniversary

If none of these ideas strike your fancy as the perfect gift, you can never go wrong with having your wedding photos printed and framed in your home or creating a photo book. A photo album or photo paper count and serve as a simple yet perfect idea for a traditional first anniversary gift. Hanging your wedding photos is the ultimate home decor and a great way to remember your special day every day!

Paper Gift Ideas for Your 1st Wedding Anniversary

Get creative and think outside the box: give your spouse a custom-printed coupon book filled with “gift” coupons for date nights or chores! Another fun paper gift idea to consider is a pair of printed plane, train, sports event, or even concert tickets for a weekend getaway. Why not celebrate one of life’s biggest moments with a mini vacay and recreate that romance from the honeymoon?

What gift should I give to a couple for their one year anniversary?

If you want to stick with the traditional gift of paper a great anniversary gift to give a couple would be personalized stationery.  Stationery is a practical gift that keeps on giving. Everyone needs to own their own stationery so consider gifting the couple each their own set or a set for both of them to use with their last name, monogram, or just first names only.   

You could also give them a clock as that is the more modern first-year anniversary gift.  An engraved mantle clock with their last name or wedding date would be a great modern first anniversary gift.  There are also fun and quirky wall clocks or smaller desk clocks that would suffice depending on your level of comfort with the couple.  

Find the Perfect 1st Wedding Anniversary Gift

If you are unsure what to gift your spouse or loved one for their first wedding anniversary, just give them a gift from the heart. It will always be special because it comes from someone they love. However, if you still feel stumped when another anniversary rolls around in another year, bookmark this page for more gift inspiration. We always are sharing more unique and creative wedding anniversary gift ideas.

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Jessica Bishop Headshot

Jessica Bishop is the founder of TheBudgetSavvyBride.com, and has worked in various areas and roles within the wedding industry since 2007. She is the author of the best-selling book,The Budget-Savvy Wedding Planner & Organizer and also hosts The Bouquet Toss Wedding Planning Podcast. Jessica's expert wedding advice and savvy savings tips have been featured by Good Morning America, COSMOPOLITAN, Glamour, and more.