Just when your bank account was about to make a full recovery from the winter holidays, Valentine’s Day strolls up and shoots a heart-shaped arrow at your pocketbook, or was that Cupid? For this one day, over 180 million cards will be exchanged, an average 198 million roses will be pruned for bouquets, and almost 50 million pounds of chocolate will be sold. The holiday of romance costs Americans a record-breaking $19.7 billion last year, with $4.5 billion paid out to jewelry vendors alone. This is an expensive time of year for couples; you, yourself, may have a special someone in your life and, feeling compelled by the over-commercialization of the holiday, believe you need to bleed out your account, buy him or her an expensive gift to show just how special they are to you. Stop right there! Anyone can buy roses, candy, or heart-shaped trinkets from a store; save yourself time, energy, and money by recreating one of these ten DIY Valentine’s Day gifts – five for him, five for her. It will mean a lot more to your partner to receive a gift you made than one you bought because not only will your gift be one-of-a-kind, but the care you put into making it will speak more clearly to how you feel for the person.
Five Gifts for Him
Though you could buy alphabet leather stamps at Hobby Lobby or Michaels, a full set may be cheaper on Amazon (click here), and Tandy Leather supplies a variety of image stamps from animals to floral patterns to Celtic symbols and more.
Because a tie does not require a great deal of fabric – approximately ½ yard, you might afford to make three different pattern ties – two for business and one for fun; a “fun” tie may be one that showcases his favorite cartoon character.
Additional Source: Men’s Skinny + Square Tie Pattern
Though the source for this project’s tutorial calls for a “beer tray”, your partner can use the tray – circular or rectangular, either is fine – to serve and enjoy any food or drink he prefers. The subject(s) of your pictorial sources can vary from drink labels to record covers to movie titles.
Protect his iPad from getting scratched-up in his bookbag or suitcase with this homemade iPad case. Great for the regular traveler, the iPad case is open to design and size production.
Additional Sources: iPad Cover Tutorial, Simple Tablet Sleeve DIY, How to Make an iPad or Tablet Case DIY Tutorial Video
No one likes tripping over a phone cord or seeing a mess of cables sprawled across their desk. This upcycled plastic-bottle charging station will give your partner some order and a safe stride across the floor at night. Mod podge images onto the plastic surface to give the changing station some personality in accordance with his interests.
Five Gifts for Her
Jar of Notes
This project should need no tutorial, I think. Buy a large sealable jar, one that will hold 365 folded notes, each one written by you from the heart. Have the notes be color-coded to correspond with a theme. For example, green notes communicate memories you and her share; pink notes relay reasons you love her; and blue notes disclose things that will make her smile (hopefully). Be sure to print and paste instructions on the jar that explain the single rule to this gift – she can only open one note a day, and decorate the jar to give it aesthetic appeal.
Do not limit yourself to the “I Love You” and polka-dot designs in the cited tutorial. Go to Hobby Lobby, Michaels, or any craft store and buy stencils that reproduce the things your partner adores in life. An example: If she is an equestrian, paint horses, horseshoes, carrots, saddles, bridle bits, and other equine-related icons. You can also use smaller-sized letter stencils to paint her favorite quote or song lyric on the towel(s). If you do not find the “right” stencils at the craft store, you can search for them online and print to cut and use.
If you wish to go the extra mile with this gift, put together a mini spa kit. Buy a small wicker basket or pretty tin box, line with tissue paper or nice fabric, and place the heart-shaped bath bombs inside, along with a loofa sponge, scented candle, and fluffy face and body towels – one of each.
Additional Source: How to Make the Ultimate Spa Basket
Though the teddy bears above are cute, if she likes a specific animal, you may be able to find a pattern online and sew the miniature critter she loves.
Additional Source: Felt Animal Crafts
Once more, do not feel limited to the example in the provided tutorial. You can make magnets in any shape you feel your partner will like. For example: If she is a florist, you can shape flower magnets, complete with flower pots, garden utensils, and a little sign that says, “(Name)(‘s) Garden.” You can even go so far as to make a picture frame with the air-dry clay.
Additional Source: Clay Photo Frame Tutorial