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Valentine's Day at Home: Budget-Friendly Ways to Add Romance

This VALENTINE'S DAY , don't break the bank to show your sweetie how much you appreciate them. Follow our tips for some affordable and romantic Valentine's Day ideas that will express how you feel without going over budget.

Because Valentine's Day is all about love and expressing your feelings we prefer to keep the celebration itself low key and comfortable. This means no expensive gifts or pricey menus at a restaurant, but instead a romantic evening in the privacy of our home with a sensual mood, encouraging contact and communication.


Tip 1: Choose Your Menu Wisely

The simple act of sharing food has long signified trust and bonding. Serve up an aphrodisiac inspired menu this Valentine's Day and pair it with a deep red wine. Nothing says sensual like these two menu ideas - up the ante even more by feeding each other.



We've got a helpful list of aphrodisiac foods to guide your shopping trip as well as aphrodisiac scents if you're not set on the ingredients for your menu.

Side Tip: Wine on a Budget

Search for the nearest Trader Joe's Wine Shop and stock up on the infamous Two Buck Chuck. This Charles Shaw wine, available in Sauvignon Blanc, Merlot, Cabernet Sauvignon, and Shiraz, goes down smooth and costs less than $3 a bottle.

If you don't have a Trader Joes in your area, browse your local liquor store and remember that the price of wine is most affected by how long its been aged and how far it's been transported.

Look for newer bottles from Central America for a bargain.


Tip 2: Dress Food Up for the Occasion

Your menu is sure to hint romance at your Valentine subtly, but to make it clear this evening is special, dress your food in drama - with deep red roses.



We love the idea of using rose tops to embellish platters. Buy yours a few days in advance and cut the stems once you're ready to set up to save. Petals will do the trick as well and they're even cheaper.


Tip 3: Set the Mood

An easy and inexpensive way to add a Valentine touch to a simple clear glass votive is to wrap it with ribbon, decorative trim, or real rose petals.



Julie shares her innovative and inexpensive way to dress up your Valentine's Day mood lighting. If you're not feeling crafty or you don't have the time to do this, just make sure candles make their way to the table in some way!

Another inexpensive and easy way to set the mood? MUSIC! Sultry tunes are guaranteed to set you and your Valentine at ease, encourage intimacy and drown out any distracting noises.


Tip 4: Sweet & Sexy Gifts on a Budget



Sweet: Valentine's Day Love Notes

Take the opportunity to share and reinforce why he/she is your Valentine. Sweet reminders are lovely gifts that will cost you nothing - just speak from your heart. Even if you are no Shakespeare, you can still sign a sonnet for your someone by using this Love Letter Generator.

Sexy: Love Coupons

You've seen these (and will see these) books all over - from B&N stores to department stores - as soon as the season of love is in the air. Rather than shelling out $15 or more for one of these books, make your own! You know your Valentine best, so customize a book he/she is sure to enjoy.


Tip 5: Make it About You & Your Valentine Only

In today's world it seems were constantly connected - shut the phone off (and any other device that's going to distract you) and make your Valentine the only one in your world.



If you're not exchanging gifts you can still commemorate the holiday with a homemade card or a love note. Offer 10 reasons why your Valentine is so wonderful or a little poem for a sweet addition.

Remember how thrilled you were when someone made you a mixed tape way back when? The little things matter!

Find more party planning inspirations for Valentines Day

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Meet our Writer
Jennifer Geddes
Celebrations Writer

Jennifer Kelly Geddes has hosted Christmas cookie swaps, New Year's open houses, Thanksgiving for 22, and all manner of dinner parties in her Manhattan and Ghent, NY homes.

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