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Traditional gifts for every occasion

1st March 2018


Giving gifts often imparts as much joy to those who give as those who receive, especially if the gift is thoughtful and personal. This is especially important if it is for one of life’s great milestones. However for those who struggle with limited mobility, it can be difficult to get out and about to search the high-street for the perfect gift. Whether they rely on a mobility scooter or stair lifts for the elderly, often shopping online makes the process much easier. It is even more of a struggle if you are not 100% sure of a person’s taste. For those who find this stressful, there are often traditional gifts that can be adapted for a modern audience and are both meaningful and personal.

Christening/ Naming ceremony


Whether the parents are religious or not, many people still choose to announce their child and enjoy a gathering of family and friends. The ceremonies and services can gather greatly depending on the religious persuasion of the parents, but often the gifts given are keepsakes for the child.

Traditionally silver is given as part of a christening gift, and according to Christening Silver: “Christening gifts and baptism presents were initially small items of monetary or material value that could be kept as an initial investment for the child's future. The silver sixpence or the lucky sovereign could be the start of a nest-egg to help the child gain independence in later life.”

While napkin rings or silver spoons may still be traditional, why not opt for something that will become a memory of the child’s youth. Silver first tooth boxes or first curl keep sakes have become very popular over recent years. For something a little less specific, opt for a silver photo frame.

18th Birthday


In the UK this is the legal age to consume alcohol and thus it has become popular to buy personalised tankards that are engraved with the person’s name and date of birth. Often girls receive a significant piece of jewellery that they will treasure and pass on. After speaking to the parents and discussing preferences, it is just about choosing the type of jewellery you think she will wear and making it personal (perhaps using her birthstone?). Janet from Middle Aged Mama struggled on what to give her daughter for this milestone birthday and settled on creating a tradition:

“I’m leaning towards continuing a bit of a family tradition. You see, when I turned 18, my Mum gave me a lovely garnet ring (garnets being the birthstone for January) which I treasured – right up until the day Miss 17 discovered it when she was much younger, played with it, and promptly lost it.”

For those who know 18-year olds who are off to university or the working world, there are often much more useful gifts, though they may lack the sentimentality. Often technology is very useful, though if you are unsure what they need or what is suitable, vouchers for an appropriate shop can go towards a piece of equipment.

21st Birthday/ Graduation


Though often seen as more of a milestone birthday across the pond, many British youngsters have taken to celebrating their 21st birthday as well as their 18th. This is often a birthday where they are ready to receive more mature gifts that will help them on to their future. Traditionally this is the age when they would receive a key to the door as a sign of responsibility and trust. Though often people receive the keys to their childhood homes in their teenage years, many people give key jewellery to continue the tradition.

For graduation gifts, it is often a great idea to give something that will help them in the working world. Whether a smart briefcase, a nice pair of cufflinks or a fancy pen, it will all be appreciated.

Not everyone will wish to go straight into the working world or some people may have already been a part of it, for those an experience may be an ideal present. This could be a voucher for an airline towards their next big trip or a grown-up experience in the city they live.

Ruby Wedding Anniversary (40th)


If you know a couple that has made it through 40 years of marriage, it is safe to say they may need a gift to reward them for that achievement. As the name suggests, this anniversary is characterised by giving rubies or something of that colour. This may include jewellery for a significant other, or if you are a friend of the couple, opt instead for something in a ruby hue. This could be ornamental, like a vase in deep red or alternatively choose a gift that fits the couple’s personality that you can get in red. This could be kitchen equipment for couples that are foodies or perhaps something intrinsic to a hobby that can be purchased in red.

For those opting for something a touch more traditional, roses are often given, especially those whose blooms match the anniversary. This is not only meant to represent the beauty of the couple’s love but also how it has grown together. For those looking for inspiration, Country Garden Roses carry a ruby anniversary collection.

Golden Wedding Anniversary (50th)


Another milestone that deserves celebration is half a century in marriage. Traditionally, as the name suggests, anything gold will fit with the theme. However, with so many older adults looking to downsize into smaller homes, they may not appreciate more possessions, no matter how thoughtful. This can lead to difficulty when knowing what to buy them. Instead of lavishing a small fortune, instead, spend some time making a gift that is really thoughtful and personal. Contacting friends and family to find photos, or even looking over your personal collection, as well as presenting these beautifully in a scrapbook is a thoughtful gift that is sure to be treasured. For those looking for inspiration, The Scrapbook Circle is chock full of ideas about presentation. 

For some more ideas, take a look at this article on Mother's Day gifts and treats for grandma.

Image Credit: Tulane Public RelationsParvin

This news article is from Handicare UK. Articles that appear on this website are for information purposes only.