steal this idea: glowing heart garland

heartlights1
heartlight2

This project came about as I was thinking about a simple way to “Valentine up” the white twinkle lights I still had up in my office area. I remembered spying a few cool projects in the blogosphere (namely here and here) utilizing baking cups as a quick way to embellish a string of lights. So I grabbed a few colorful baking cups, scissors and a stapler, and came up with a quick and easy holiday craft that can be done in a snap! — Megan B.
Click for the how-to after the jump!

From our partners

winning idea for your sweetheart: a personalized loving cup

cup

Although it’s not uncommon to see antique silver trophies — or loving cups — priced in the thousands, you can find nice silver plated cups online at Etsy, ebay and Ruby Lane for under $60. (The one in the top picture was $60 on Ruby Lane but unfortunately, was marked “Sale Pending” by the time I spied it.) With a little luck and persistence, you can even find ones engraved to the winner of a tub race, chicken show or local regatta. So what to do once you find one? If you’ve got the skills, you can buy flowers and make your own arrangement. If your inner Martha doesn’t extend to flower arranging, give your local florist a call. Chances are, you can drop off the cup and they’ll create an arrangement to fit.

screwdrivers

Another option? Ditch the flowers altogether and create a “bouquet” of objects. For the DIYer, a trophy cup filled with red and blue screwdrivers. For the artist, a set of fanned and fine-tipped brushes or colored pencils. For the cook, wooden spoons, mini dough whisks or a combination of both. — Sarah L.

From our partners

real life test kitchen: heart of winter salad

valentines salad

This is the type of thing you should serve your sweetheart: instead of being filled with empty calories and saturated fat (I’m looking at you chocolate), this salad is filled with fiber, antioxidants, and yes, the secret ingredient of love. In addition to being visually appealing for Valentine’s dining, it’s a dish designed to help enhance romance! Fennel, beets, and honey are all reported to have an aphrodisiac effect, as well as tasting pretty darn delicious together. The earthiness of the beets and licorice-tinged crunch of the fennel are rounded out by tangy, jewel-like red and pink oranges and slightly bitter Belgian endive; while the crumbled goat cheese adds a creaminess that’s downright sexy. So bust out the champagne, the romantic music, and snuggle down in front of the fire with a big plate of salad! — Megan B.
click for the recipe, after the jump!

From our partners

valentine’s day prints we love

seattle show posters
Hello Also I Love You

Again, no secret: I’m a huge proponent of finding the perfect card for special occasions, but I’m an equal-opportunity lover in that prints and posters can be a beautiful way to share a sentiment year round. Integrate your love into your decor and share your feelings every day, not just the overly-commercialized ones.

There are many out there, but here’s a smattering of some new options and old favorites that we, appropriately, love:

My Basic Needs

And, a couple affectionate card sets:

From our partners

valentine’s day find: skip the teddy bear, try the wee ninja

wee ninja

I hate getting stuffed animals for Valentine’s Day. While the thought is well-intentioned enough, I can’t stand the fuzzy, pink teddy bears holding lace-edged hearts that Walgreens stock by the dozen. They all seem like the plushie equivalent of Splenda. I was all set to think that I had outgrown stuffed animals completely when I came across the Pocket Ninja ($10). I’m not embarrassed to admit that I squealed when I saw this miniature dangerous assassin. Equal parts deadly and adorable, the Pocket Ninja is the perfect Valentine’s gift for your sweetie who finds the usual stuffed animals lame but still visits Cute Overload daily. While there is a slightly larger version (the Wee Ninja, $20), I love the fits-in-the-palm-of-your-hand, portable version because, really, you never know when you’ll need a ninja. –Katie D.

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