gift ideas

If you’re in a relationship this Valentine’s and want to impress your partner with a special gesture, don’t stress--there’s no need to break the bank. The important thing about any gesture is that it’s not about the money, but the thought you put into doing something nice. Here’s a guide to getting together a last minute Valentine’s gift on a budget. 

1. Think about what your special someone likes, and what would be meaningful to them. Maybe this is as simple as surprising them with a coffee in the morning, or leaving a quick note on their car.

2. Hobbies are a good place to start thinking about how to tailor your gift--what does your significant other do in their free time? Would they like a mug with their favorite sports team’s logo, or dice for a game they play? If you know someone who likes writing, pick out a journal they’d like and make a poem on the first page. Or, if they’re a music person, do the same with a book of staff paper; I’ve found a surprisingly pretty one in Five Below. 

3. Get something they’ll use. Don’t pick something out just to have something. If there’s something you know they’ve been meaning to buy themselves which isn’t too expensive, that’s a good way to go. If you can’t think of something strictly functional, fill a picture frame with your favorite memory. You also can’t go wrong with candy, and chocolate dipping isn’t as scary as it seems. (Double broiler method is the way to go.)

4. Customize it. This can be as easy as writing a short note or drawing, or wrapping the gift in a unique way. One of the coolest gifts I ever got was a mason jar decorated pretty simply, and filled with handwritten notes, for when you need a little encouragement. On that note, don’t be afraid to check dollar stores for some of the simpler things, like mason jars.

5. Everyone always says to make something. Let’s face it: that’s difficult, and sometimes expensive. Check out Pinterest or other DIY instructions, but don’t overwhelm yourself with something too complicated, or that doesn’t seem like it will work as well as these professional crafters make it out to. Another good thing to look at is the coupons for Joann and Michael’s craft stores, which can go up to 40% off an item.

6. In a pinch on time and looking for flowers? Don’t blow half your paycheck at Walgreens or CVS. A good place to try is the florist in Stracks. You can pick up a single rose for just a few dollars, and attach it to a handwritten card.

7. Are you and your significant other not sold on the idea of gifts at all? Make a date out of buying discount candy on Feb. 15. You can’t go wrong with that. 

Now, go forth with these gift ideas and have an awesome Valentine’s day.

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