Ahhhh…February 14th…also known as Valentine’s Day! A day dedicated for showing appreciation to the people in our lives that we love and adore by spending money on gifts and professing our love through words. Valentine’s Day has been celebrated for centuries; the holiday’s customs originated in early modern England and then spread throughout the other English speaking countries in the 19th century. Today many people celebrate the holiday by gifting candies and chocolates, flowers, perfume, jewelry, and/or greeting cards to their loved ones. If you’re looking to get creative though and step outside the box, there are many other great gift ideas to show your appreciation and love.
Buying a gift for your loved one on Valentine’s Day doesn’t have to follow the normal tradition. Sometimes the out of the ordinary gifts end up being the most well-loved and cherished. Plus, chocolates get eaten and flowers fade – a gift that lasts or creates new memories together will show your love for years to come instead of a few fleeting days or weeks.
One great option is to buy potted plants, or houseplants instead of the traditional cut roses that will fade after a couple of weeks. This is especially meaningful if the person in your life loves to garden. A potted plant or houseplant makes a great addition to a home’s décor and helps to create a relaxing, peaceful environment. Flowering plants can add an extra pop of color too, and will last a long time if properly cared for. If you are unsure if the recipient has a green thumb or not it’s best to start with plants that have low maintenance requirements with a high aesthetic payoff: bamboo, amaryllis, Christmas cactus, cyclamen, orchids, paperwhites, and lavender. You can score some extra bonus points if you gift a plant to your loved one that has a specific, relevant meaning behind it For example an orchid means “delicate beauty”; purple violet means the giver’s “thoughts were occupied with love”; a heliotrope with its intoxicating fragrance means “eternal love”.
Not everyone enjoys taking care of plants though, and that’s completely understandable. If your loved one has a terrible black thumb and can’t keep plants alive, perhaps another gift would be better suited. For the bookworm in your life something such as personalized love story would make a perfect gift instead. Personalized love stories can take on many different forms and hold a uniqueness that isn’t found in a greeting card written by someone else. You can create a story that details your journey together, talking about the important days/dates in your relationship or you can design one that focuses on the reasons why you love the person as much as you do. They can be completely handcrafted using an idea found on the internet or you can turn it over to the hands of a professional and have a beautiful bound book created that is filled with pictures and stories of your life together.
Another creative idea is to make something that you know they’ll love. This works best obviously if you have a creative mine and some crafting talent/ability, but the thought is always appreciated none the less. The sentiment behind a handcrafted gift can mean way more than something purchased from a store. Depending on your ability you could make a personalized chalkboard frame and put a favorite picture of the two of you in it; you could paint rocks of different sizes and shapes with hearts on them making a great gift for someone who gardens; or you could buy a coffee mug for the coffee lover in your life and personalize it using permanent markers. Instructions for all of these ideas are easy to find online if you get the itch to be crafty in your gift giving.
Lastly, home décor items can be a great way to express your feelings and let someone know how much you love them. Currently one of the popular trends in decorating is to accent your living space with large letters, or words made from varying metals. It’s a great way to customize a space without making it feel too personal, and it’s easy to create a look that coordinates well with the style of your home or the room you’re decorating. A wall art piece such as this metal “LOVE” sign in block letters symbolizes your everlasting love and would look fantastic displayed in a bedroom, living room, or entry room. The simple design done in stainless steel coordinates with any colors or decorating trends, making it a piece that will be cherished for a long time to come.
Valentine’s Day is the perfect opportunity to express your feelings and admiration to the ones you love. Traditional gifts are always a sure bet, but stepping outside the realm of flowers, candy and jewelry allows you to express yourself in a more lasting way. Look at options such as flowering houseplants, customized gifts that tell a story about your relationship, or metal home décor items that serve as a constant reminder of your love.