Each year, we wonder what to get our significant other for one of the most romantic days of the year. When chocolates or cologne just won’t do, we try to think outside the box for a much better Valentine’s Day gift. From clothes to movies to small electronics, nothing seems quite right. You may be a procrastinator, waiting till the day before, or even the day of, to make your final selection. Be careful, lest you end up with yet another box of chocolates and a greeting card!
If all that shopping for breathtaking Valentine’s Day presents is giving you a headache, relax and put your natural creativity and talents to use instead! Here are ten creative gifts you can make or do yourself:
1. If you are musically inclined, compose a song for your one-and-only. Personally, I melt when someone sings to me or plays an instrument for me… Who doesn’t love to be serenaded? Writing a song for someone you love is perhaps one of the most sensitive and intimate gifts you can give, and it will surely be cherished and appreciated.
To add a more tangible artistic element for your Valentine’s Day gift, create a special CD case with pictures of you and your sweetheart, and don’t forget to print the lyrics out in a little booklet. You may want to perform the song live, but giving a hard copy of your hard work only adds to the impact of your gift.
2. If music isn’t exactly your thing, consider writing a poem for your mate. The feeling and meaning that can be intricately woven throughout the lines of poetry is unmatched in emotion by many other signs of affection. If time allows, be especially creative and use a software imaging program like PhotoShop to dress up your poem with beautiful graphics.
Not the computer savvy type? Buy a picture frame and some matting to create your own work of art! Print out or nicely scribe your poem on a fancy piece of paper, then apply the matting, fit everything inside the frame, and you’ve got one beautiful and personalized Valentine’s Day gift!
3. If your talents lie more on the artistic side of things, design some artwork. A beautiful sketch or drawing that you yourself design would be a wonderful sign of your love. Frame it if you wish, or roll it up and fasten it with a nice ribbon like an ancient scroll.
4. To capture your memories in a more tangible format, consider making a scrapbook or memory book for your sweetheart. All those photos from way back, ticket stubs, dried flowers, and your own personal special touches can culminate into a very thoughtful and sentimental gift. Or, if you don’t have time for all the bells and whistles of a true, traditional scrapbook, look into digital scrapbooking. It’s one of the latest and greatest ways to capture your memories with ease!
5. If you enjoy cooking and baking or find yourself particularly good at either one, make use of your talent. Make your sweetie a mouth-watering dinner or a scrumptious dessert. Add candlelight, mood music, or your own special touches to romanticize it even more. For twice the fun, see if your honey is interested in cooking together. You can have a great time while being romantic together as you add and mix ingredients and enjoy taste testing the results. What a fun Valentine’s Day activity!
6. Create a calendar with photos of the two of you. It may be February already, but there are still ten and a half good months left in the year. You can create a photo calendar easily at a site like the Kodak Online Gallery or Snapfish. If money is an issue, you can always create the calendar on your own computer and print it out at home. This Valentine’s gift is one your sweetheart can enjoy all year long!
7. Make a music compilation filled with songs that make you think of your honey. Chances are, he or she will love it and most likely will play it when you are not around or when you are on their mind. Make a copy for yourself, too, just in case you find yourself missing your love and wishing you were together at that moment.
For the crafty approach, design a CD case and cover for your sweetie. Don’t forget to make a little booklet with a list of all the songs and artists you decided to feature. If you are feeling especially ambitious, add a little quote as to why you selected each of these songs.
8. Construct a coupon booklet of little freebies you are willing to give your partner—free back massages, dinner at a favorite hotspot, a home-cooked meal, a night where he or she is boss, full control of the remote, a fill-in-the-blank coupon…you get the idea! Be creative, but personalize it according to your relationship. Draw little images to dress up each coupon, or add stickers for a fun, special touch.
To save some cutting and gluing, you can also craft your coupon book on the computer using one of many different software applications. Print it out, staple it together and you are ready to present a sweet and thoughtful handmade gift that lasts beyond Valentine’s Day.
9. Using glass paints and a mug, glass, or vase of your choosing, craft a stained-glass work of art. If you are not totally confident with your painting and designing abilities, find an image you would like to use (or for words and phrases, type whatever you would like the glass to say on your word processor and print the document out) and tape it on the inside of the glass so you can easily trace over it with the paint.
Be sure to allow enough time for the item to dry and for the paint to set before giving your masterpiece to the recipient. For a sweet touch once the glass is dry, you can fill it with your mate’s favorite candy.
10. Crochet or knit a blanket, scarf or other specialty item for your honey. Handmade gifts mean a lot because much thought and time have been invested. If you’re crafting an afghan or blanket, you will want to plan ahead several months to ensure you complete it on time. Perhaps this is a project for another year!