The 5th anniversary is a big deal – aside from your 1st, 10th, and 50th, it’s the anniversary with the highest expectations for gift giving. In fact, it’s somewhat common for couples that were pragmatic about their first ring purchases when they were starting off together to give each other more expensive wedding rings or anniversary bands. Most couples will spend two or three times more on the 5th and 10th wedding anniversaries. It’s strange to me that we put so much emphasis on an arbitrary number just because we have a base-10 number system, but I don’t make the rules; I just give the gift ideas.
I’ll still list some ideas for couples who have agreed to a smaller amount, but if you’re the kind of couple that doesn’t set explicit limits just make sure you understand that the stakes are higher. You don’t want to be the one giving a $50 gift when your significant other is giving you a thoughtful and unique gift that cost $300+.
Keep in mind that 5th anniversary gift ideas should be classy rather than strictly functional. She might love a new light fixture, but it’s better to go with something a little more personal. Fine jewelry, for example, is generally a safe choice for the 5th.
The traditional gift theme for the fifth anniversary is “wood” and the modern theme is “silverware”. You don’t need to follow these themes, but we’ll consider some ideas that might match the themes while still making a great gift.
Diamond Drop Earrings
Remember, our theme on the 5th is “special, classy, and awe-inspiring.” Diamond drop earrings fill that criteria like other earrings wouldn’t. Studs are nice, but they’re not classy. Pearls might be versatile, but they’re not special. Plain silver earrings are going to be used more often, but they’re not awe inspiring.
If you go with diamond drop earrings, avoid things like hearts and flowers, as they might come across as a little bit cheesy and even cheap. The ones I’ve selected will stun her, and they’re flashy without being too ostentatious. Pro tip: pair the earrings with a nice date at the fanciest dress-up event or restaurant you can find. They’re hard to find these days, but there’s bound to be at least one in every major city, and she’ll have a chance to show off your gift.
Wooden Jewelry Box
As I said, no one really follows the anniversary gift-giving themes anymore, but a nice wooden jewelry box is still a great gift. Getting a box with a multitude of drawers might help if your wife has a problem with jewelry creeping all over the dresser. The Seya jewelry box has a nice soft lining, tons of drawers, and comes in vintage white, espresso, cherry, and walnut.
Unique Flatware (AKA Silverware)
Silverware is the modern gift theme for the 5th anniversary. If your flatware is looking a little beat up or mismatched you might go with the modern gift theme.
I do love our Oneida flatware, but it does bother me a little that everyone has the same brand and a similar set. When we serve guests they don’t even notice our flatware because it all looks and feels so similar. Personally I’d get something that stands out a little, but the choice is yours.
Silver Champagne Flutes
Here’s another one that matches the silverware gift theme, but is also a very personal gift if your recipient enjoys her champagne. Sterling silver champagne flutes make a great gift: because champagne usually accompanies celebration, you’ll be reminded of your anniversary every time you pull them out for a special occasion between the two of you. If she’s more of a wine lover, get the stainless steel wine glasses instead. Stainless and silver are both nice because the materials feel fine, won’t leach harmful substances, and are far less likely than glass to break.
A Nice Tennis Bracelet
Getting diamonds that match the (probably diamond) wedding ring is a slam dunk gift, especially if she doesn’t already have something for the wrist that matches her ring. There’s still nothing classier in the world than a little black dress with lots of complimentary jewelry.
Some.. ahem … sleepwear?
I wouldn’t recommend this as a stand-alone gift, BUT it’s a really nice addition if you’re planning more of an activity as your main gift. For example if you’re traveling somewhere fun or going someplace nice to drink and enjoy the night, it’s still nice to have a (very) little something wrapped up. I don’t know much about the comfort of women’s clothing, but by all accounts this is also quite comfortable.
A Silver Watch
Remember that women are more likely to find watches both useful and fashionable. Smartphones usually go in the purse, and it’s more of a hassle than reaching into a pocket. That said, obviously don’t get a watch if she’s made comments about how pointless watches are with smartphones, or if she doesn’t own a fashionable watch. Don’t worry about redundancy. If she owns a single time-keeping watch (excluding Fitbit or something) for the sake of fashion there will be an occasion to wear a nice watch like the one I’ve linked.
Laptop Holder / Serving Tray
Imagine giving this gift along with breakfast in bed on the morning of your anniversary. Then flip it over and use it as a lap desk for even the largest of laptops. And again, it matches the fifth anniversary classic theme if you care about that sort of thing.
A tablet is a great gift for a woman who loves technology or lounging around browsing the web. If you see her shunning her laptop or desktop in favor of her smartphone, this gift will definitely be appreciated. She probably doesn’t even know how much she’ll love it yet, but it’s a far superior experience compared to a smaller smartphone.
The iPad is a stellar choice if money isn’t an issue, and I recommend the iPad if you can afford it. Unfortunately, the price makes it a hard sell for most people. Unless she’s a diehard Apple fan she probably won’t even notice the difference, especially if most of her time is spent in a browser.
Spending a lot of money on wine without a proper wine cooler or cellar should be a criminal offense. Even a few weeks in temperatures above 70 degrees can turn the more sensitive and aged red into a vinegar-tasting waste. If she likes wine, get her something that makes her life easier for storage and serving.
You’re looking for a few things in a wine cooler: excellent temperature regulation, efficiency, and ideally two zones. You can cool whites at a slightly lower temperature (say 46 degrees), while keeping the reds somewhere around 60. This limits the degree to which you’ll need to warm your reds and chill your whites in order to serve.
A New Wedding Ring
As I mentioned, some couples weren’t in a position to give each other expensive wedding rings and wisely bought inexpensive rings. Now that you’re a little more established you might be able to afford something a little nicer – and give one of the best presents imaginable.
I featured the ring above for a few reasons: it’s modern in design; silver and low-profile rings aren’t going away anytime soon. The metal is platinum all the way through, meaning it won’t fade or rub off. The gems are nestled below a platinum ridge, which will both protect the diamonds and prevent it from snagging on anything – or from scratching you. (I’m not the only one, right?) If her current ring has a big fat high-profile stone in the center and she loves it, though, definitely think about something else.
What do you think? What’s the best anniversary gift you’ve ever given?
Chris has a knack for finding gifts that are unique, useful, and memorable. He enjoys sharing his ideas and finding new presents for his loved ones in the process.