Wedding anniversaries are a special tradition for married couples to celebrate each year they are together. The traditional gifts associated with each anniversary year are a fun way to mark the occasion. As the years go by, the materials for the gifts get increasingly more precious. One of the biggest milestones is the 60th wedding anniversary. But what is the traditional 60th anniversary gift? Is it platinum or something else?
The History of Anniversary Gift Traditions
The tradition of giving gifts for wedding anniversaries dates back to medieval Germany. Originally, only the 25th and 50th anniversaries were specially celebrated. Over time, the tradition expanded in Germany and other European countries to include yearly gifts up to the 15th anniversary. The modern list as we know it today has its origins in 1937, when the American National Retail Jeweler Association released an updated list marking every anniversary up to the 15th, and then every 5th year up to the 60th. The list linked various materials with each anniversary year. It has gone through some revisions over time, but the tradition of anniversary gifts is still popular today.
Traditional 60th Anniversary Gift
So what is the traditional 60th wedding anniversary gift? According to the modern list, the traditional gift for the 60th anniversary is the diamond. Diamonds are linked to this milestone anniversary because they are rare, valuable, and enduring – symbolizing the couple’s commitment after six decades together. Diamond jewelry is a popular 60th anniversary present. Another modern take is to give diamond watches or cufflinks.
While diamonds are the modern traditional gift, some alternate gemstones are also associated with the 60th anniversary:
- Yellow diamonds – Some consider lighter yellow diamonds as an appropriate 60th anniversary gemstone, representing joy and warmth after 60 years of marriage.
- Alexandrite – This color-changing gem switches from green to purple, making it a distinctive, rare stone suiting a noteworthy anniversary.
- Star ruby – The dispersing star shape in these rubies forms a symbolic star of love, especially fitting for an enduring marriage.
Color and Flower Symbols
In addition to gemstones, the 60th wedding anniversary is associated with specific colors and flowers:
- Color – Yellow or gold symbolizing the golden years of marriage.
- Flower – Yellow rose or narcissus for 60 years of love and joy.
Modern vs Traditional Anniversary Gifts
The traditional and modern lists have some differences when it comes to anniversary gifts. For the 60th, the modern gift is diamond jewelry or the alternative gemstones. The traditional gifts have more emphasis on enduring love and commitment:
As you can see, diamonds are consistent across both lists. But the modern list focuses on the preciousness of the diamond itself, while the traditional meaning highlights everlasting love.
Other Milestone Anniversary Gifts
The 60th anniversary diamond gift builds on previous milestone anniversaries. Here is an overview of some of the major traditional anniversary gifts leading up to the 60th:
- 25th – Silver
- 30th – Pearl
- 40th – Ruby
- 50th – Gold
Each material signifies a different aspect of a lasting marriage. Silver reflects harmony after 25 years. Pearls symbolize purity and integrity at 30 years. Rubies represent passion and energy at the 40 year mark. Gold marks a golden milestone at 50 years. Finally, diamonds culminate the cycle at 60 years with their enduring brilliance.
Gift Ideas for the 60th
Diamond jewelry is the obvious 60th anniversary present, but there are many creative gift ideas couples can consider:
- Custom diamond pendants, rings, or earrings
- Diamond watches or cufflinks
- Jewelry with yellow diamonds or other yellow gemstones
- Alexandrite or star ruby jewelry
- Diamond jewelry restoring or resetting grandmother’s diamonds
- A trip to a diamond mine or gemological museum
- Donation to charity in their name
The diamond tradition can also be incorporated in non-jewelry gifts:
- Photo collage of diamond memories
- Custom vinyl record of special diamond anniversary song
- Champagne with diamond inset ice bucket or glasses
- Diamond watches, cufflinks, money clips
- Diamond anniversary greeting cards
- Flowers with a diamond pendant or earrings
Celebrating Six Decades of Marriage
Reaching the 60th wedding anniversary is a rare and wonderful feat for a married couple. The diamond symbolizes their enduring commitment, forged over six memorable decades together. Diamonds are pure, brilliant, and forever – just like true love. Giving diamond jewelry or incorporating diamonds into a gift are popular ways to honor such a significant marital milestone. After 60 years, the couple’s shared memories and bond are their most precious gems.
The traditional 60th wedding anniversary gift is diamond jewelry, representing enduring love after six decades of marriage. Diamonds are linked to this milestone for their brilliance, rarity, and permanence. While diamond jewelry is the modern standard, creative alternatives include yellow diamonds, alexandrite, star rubies, trips, donations, or incorporating diamonds into non-jewelry gifts. Reaching the 60th anniversary is a monumental achievement, and diamonds are the perfect symbol of a couple’s commitment after so many years together. Diamonds represent the preciousness of their relationship and all the beautiful memories over 60 years of marriage.