Chocolates, flowers and stuffed animals are what people expect on Valentine’s Day. Steer clear of traditional gifts and surprise your significant other with a unique and unexpected present this year. Consider gifting something useful or meaningful, an item he or she can enjoy for a long time. It’s the thought that counts, so shop with your love’s interests in mind. Plan ahead, because last minute shopping is stressful and often results in poor decision making. As the Hallmark holiday approaches, listen carefully to your significant other in case he or she drops hints or merely expresses affection toward something. Gift cards and a nice deal just don’t cut it anymore.
Bucket List Boutique
114 S Royal St.
Alexandria, VA 22314
New to the DC area, Bucket List Boutique calls Old Town Alexandria home. The vintage store opened in September 2012 and already has a steady following of devoted customers. At Bucket List Boutique, browse authentic and hard-to-come-by vintage finds, as well as new, modern gifts and accessories. You never know what you’re going to stumble upon, but consider what may be on your Valentine’s bucket list. According to one of the store’s owners, Gale Curcio, Bucket List Boutique will be offering some vintage candy boxes, love letters from a solder to his wife from WWII, heart necklaces, hand-made valentines, a variety of red and pink accessories, pink and red towels, place mats and other accessories for the home. Also, choose from colorful baskets and themed characters and bags to wrap it all up.
145 Waterfront St.
Oxon Hill, MD 20745
A tea drinker’s dream come true, Capital Teas has an extensive selection of special teas and teaware. Tea types include: black, pu-erh, oolong, green, white, herbal, and fruit tisane. Purchase a tea of the month club membership and your gift will endure year round. Capital Teas also sells other products, including beer enhancers for the beer lover and rare-flavored candy bars for those with a sweet tooth. Enjoy a cup of tea after a tender meal with the apple of your eye.
3815 Livingston St.
Washington, DC 20015
Periwinkle is affordable and always fully stocked with quality trinkets and gifts. Avoid overcrowded restaurants and stay in for a change. Bake a home cooked meal and decorate your house with love-themed ornaments from Periwinkle. Choose from feather hearts, garlands or the usual array of candy and confections. The Washingtonian named Periwinkle Gifts one of the best gift shops of 2011 and locals agree that this place is a no-fail spot, no matter how picky your sweetie is.
Sticky Fingers Sweets & Eats
1370 Park Road NW
Washington, DC 20010
Sticky Fingers is a vegan bakery and cafe in Columbia Heights, ideal for a health conscious spouse. And the magicians at Sticky Fingers created something special exclusively for Valentine’s Day: “Smackers” are delicious chocolate peanut butter balls guaranteed to make your sweetie smile. The bakery also creates four sizes of cakes and, of course, cupcakes. A personalized cake with a heartwarming note like, “I love you” or “Happy Valentine’s Day” is sure to bring a smile to anyone’s face. Think ahead, because orders must be placed 24 hours in advance. If you simply can’t decide on a flavor, chew over the dessert sample platter. The Sticky Fingers staff will happily wrap any sweet treat with a bow.
3428 Connecticut Ave. NW
Washington, DC 20008
Transcendence Perfection Bliss has graced Cleveland Park in Northwest DC with its spiritual presence for nearly three decades. The gift, toy and card store is conveniently located directly across from the National Zoo. Gift ideas include hand painted pottery, Thymes Collection candles and incense, boxed stationery and journals. Purchase a journal and write a loving note on the inside. With a vast selection of cards, buy multiple – one humorous and one romantic.