“All you need is love. But a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt.”
–Charles M. Schulz
Valentine’s Day is one of those holidays that may seem like an excuse to price gouge lovers when it comes to gourmet chocolates and long-stemmed red roses but, I must admit, I really love Valentine’s Day. Just the aesthetic of a vintage picture postcard with a cupid on it wielding his mighty arrow and bow is enough to evoke feel-good feelings of love, flirtation, and romance. There’s nothing better than a heart-shaped box of chocolates wrapped in a red bow, a single crimson rose in a bud vase (or an entire bouquet), and maybe even a sugar cookie decorated with red sprinkles. Here are some tips for enjoying the holiday. Let’s all rejoice in a little levity!
Vintage candies and desserts are such fun! Heart-shaped cakes, cookies, and even Jell-O molds are absolutely precious! Of course, most people enjoy candy on Valentine’s Day but remember that it doesn’t have to cost a fortune. Nothing quite beats a simple (yet full of nostalgia) Whitman’s Sampler! The chocolates do not have to be artisanal or high-end: the key to this holiday is all about aesthetics so, as long as the box is heart-shaped (with a ribbon, tulle, and some frilly lace), you’re good to go! And let us not forget about the cutest Valentine’s trend of all: pastel Conversation Hearts that say “Be Mine” and “I Love You” are undeniably adorable. Of course, cocktails are also a must for V-Day. Whether you’re having a “Gal-entine’s” celebration with your best girlfriends, a quiet evening at home with your significant other, or a night out on the town, champagne always makes everything more festive. If you’re cooking up something really romantic for him or her, surprise them with chocolate-covered strawberries and something baked from scratch.
Of course, roses are the most popular and traditional choice for Valentine’s Day flowers. Long-stemmed roses, tuberoses or spray roses: they all make a traditional and lasting impression. If you’re looking for something a little less expected but still on theme, try carnations in red, pink or white. Also, remember that you can never steer off course with baby’s breath.
Hand-written love letters, cards in fancy envelopes sealed with a kiss, postcards and even hand-made stationery are the backbone of Valentine’s Day! A small heart fashioned from construction paper covered in glitter is possibly one of the most precious gifts a person can receive. So, whether you pen your own epic love letter, purchase one from a high-end boutique or from an aisle at the corner chemist, make sure it’s heartfelt and sincere. And, please, write in cursive! There’s nothing romantic and old fashioned about printing.
Red and pink hearts made from tissue paper, light bulbs glowing red, confetti in the shape of cupids and long, tapered candlesticks all add to the frivolity and romance of Valentine’s Day. We all remember Valentine’s dances in Junior High and High School and, if we were lucky, there was maybe a disco ball, an enormous punch bowl, balloons, and some decent music playing. Now that we’re all grown up we can have our own Valentine’s Day parties and decorate exactly as we please. Don’t forget a white linen tablecloth and soft lighting for a romantic dinner, elegant glassware for a cocktail party and, this time, go for it and spike the punch.