Staying in is the new going out. Forgo suffering long wait times, expensive restaurant bills, and potentially awkward silences all in the name of a Hallmark holiday, when instead, you could be cozying up with your loved one in the comfort of your home.
Our interior design expert, Heather Goerzen, curated her top five Valentine’s Day date in ideas that will entertain both you and your loved one.
1. Game Night Extravaganza
Let your competitive sides out by staging a one-on-one romantic game night. Pour a glass of wine, order in pizza, and engage without phones by partaking in these fun games. Or, if you’re feeling ambitious and want to try your hand in the kitchen, try out this open-faced gouda & apple grilled cheese or winter salad recipe that will impress your Valentine.
Put some tunes on the record player, or on whatever stereo you have, and hunker down for a lively date night.
2. Indoor Candlelit Picnic
Avoid the hassle of a crowded restaurant (with potentially snobby servers) and keep the setting intimate with your honey at home. Post up in the living room and break out the blankets, pillows, and candles.
Heather recommends a large, comfy blanket to set the scene. Pottery Barn’s soft and lightweight Houndstooth Sherpa Throw is ideal for getting cozy on the floor.
For eats, focus on finger foods that won’t create a mess. Heather recommends a basic charcuterie spread to nibble on throughout the night. Purchase two cheeses (one hard and one soft), a fig jam, several cured meats, and crackers and you’ll have all the core components of a good time. For all your other snacks, try a tray to amplify the outdoors, brought indoors feeling.
Pro tip: Platters without sides won’t get in the way of you taking down an entire block of brie, and they allow you to arrange your charcuterie board more freely.
By creating a playful setting on the floor you’ll have a chance to connect in new ways.
3. Movie Night In
Don’t think of a movie night in as a cop-out for an expensive evening out. Your sweetheart will appreciate the sentiment if you pay extra attention to the details.
For starters, don’t buy microwavable popcorn bags from Safeway. Heather suggests going big with a state-of-the-art popcorn maker that will ensure your kernels come out tasting movie theater worthy. Experiment with different flavors, using butter or olive oil as the base, and adding parmesan, garlic powder, or nutritional yeast (we promise, it’s tasty!). Serve your loved one a personal bowl and make it pretty using something like this Anthropologie Atamcama bowl Heather loves.
4. Culinary Adventures In Your Kitchen
Looking to reenact the scene from Lady and the Tramp this Valentine’s Day? Try setting up a personal cooking adventure in your kitchen. Classic Italian is a safe bet for romance.
Go for something easy, but delicious and low stress like make-your-own pizzas. If your better half is a chef, Heather suggests Williams Sonoma’s pizza set which doubles as an activity and gift.
Set the table, and the mood, with red wine glasses and stunning plates that will make a night in feel just as special as going out. For date night worthy plateware, that’s also versatile enough for everyday use, Heather recommends Anthropologie’s Glenna dinner plates.
Go for a Fusion Twist
If you and your partner are feeling more adventurous try a DIY sushi set for beginners, paired with a sake set meant for sore eyes. “Serve it all up in Anthropologie’s navy Lynah Bowl so the sushi can pop, with subtle, organic details,” Heather adds.
5. Bring Napa to Your Living Room
Avoid the biggest downsides to wine tastings like driving, small pours, and the cost, by playing sommelier at home. Go to your favorite wine shop and ask for a professional’s recommendations, then set the scene with products below.
Nothing beats a night in when done right. By adding a few extra touches to the decor and ambiance of the evening, your special someone is sure to feel extra loved this Valentine’s Day.