Looking for ways to show your Valentine/s some love? Whether you’re shopping for the perfect gift, looking for something to do together or need an idea for a special activity, we can help! Read on for gifts from local shops and makers, as well cooking and craft projects you can do together (or make as a surprise gift)! And if you’re looking to do some major candy purchases, we can help with our list of the best candy stores in NYC.
But First: Free Chocolate
Valentine’s Day is obviously a big deal at GODIVA. In celebration of the holiday the chocolatier will have two larger-than-life installations of its Gold Ballotin and Goldmark Heart boxes pop up in NYC on February 8 in Herald Square and February 9 in Flatiron Plaza. And yes, they will be giving away chocolate!
(We're guessing they'll be hard to miss but you can keep an eye on GODIVA’s official Instagram for the exact location.)
See "Bloom" in Times Square
Wander among fluctuating heart-shaped shadows cast by "Bloom", the winner of the 14th annual Love in Times Square Design Competition. From afar, Bloom resembles a pavilion — a circular roof supported by a series of interlocked red and white PVC pipes, but its appearance changes with your perspective, above, below, etc. Designed by architecture and urban design practice Habitat Workshop, "Bloom" is presented in partnership with The Museum of Arts and Design and will be on view in Duffy Square from February 9 to March 9.
Feb. 9 - Mar. 9
46th & Broadway
Taste Buds Kitchen
Make an adorable Valentine's Love Shack with Taste Buds Kitchen, either in your home or at its culinary studio in Chelsea. The in-person workshop, recommended for kids ages 3 to 8 is on Feb. 13. Prices start at $79 for one child and caregiver. Click here to register. Another option: order up a Love Shack ($75) to pick up or be delivered for a $20 fee. Click here to buy.
Taste Buds is also offering an in-person class for kids and caregivers making Valentine's Day Pop-Tarts on Feb. 12. (Starting at $50)
Freshmade NYC is offering several Valentine's Day cooking projects to take part in live, via Zoom on Feb. 12 & 13. Make sweet or savory palmiers, heart-shaped bagels with berry cream cheese, or make an enjoy fondue together. Classes are $25.
Milk Bar Red Velvet Cake & More
If the ones you love are red velvet fans, get thee to a Milk Bar, stat! The American-style bakery from chef Christina Tosi with bakery locations all over NYC is serving up some very serious RV treats for Valentine's Day. Choose from red velvet cake, red velvet truffles and even red velvet soft serve!
Get a cake for $59, a dozen truffles for $29, or a combo pack for $84.
Dylan's Candy Bar Valentine Variety Tackle Box
This 20th Anniversary Limited Edition Tackle Box ($28) is a chic collection that includes sour gummy triple hearts, cherry taffy, Valentine marshmallows, milk chocolate hearts and more. Pick it up at Dylan's Candy Bar in Hudson Yards, or order it online.
20 Hudson Yards. 4th fl.
34th St. between 10th and 11th Avenues
Make a Gift at The Painted Pot
Make a special something for mom or dad at The Painted Pot, where you can paint-your-own pottery or acrylic piece. (Pottery needs to be fired and picked up later, acrylic can be taken with you the day you craft.)
Cost for pieces and studio time is usually about $20-$30. Space is limited due to Covid-19 protocols, and you must book time in advance.
Still another option is The Painted Pot's art projects to go.
229 Smith St.
200 7th Ave.
Family Art Project at Wave Hill: Love for Woodland Friends
Head to Wave Hill in the Bronx for crafting or birding. Family Art Project: Love for Woodland Friends
The art project celebrates the ways we care for each other by creating woodland-creature sock puppets. Kids can give a puppet as a heartwarming gift, or keep it to remind them of our local woodland friends.
For families with older kids, go on a guided birding excursion. Explore Wave Hill’s tranquil gardens and woodland with naturalist Gabriel Willow to observe birds in their winter habitat. Birders of all levels are welcome. Please (Bring your own binoculars. Ages 10 and older welcome with an adult.)
Art Project: Sat. Feb. 12 & Sun., Feb. 13, 10 a.m. - Noon
Free with admission to the grounds
Wave Hill House
675 West 252nd St.
Birding: Sun. Feb. 13, 9:30–11 a.m.
$15, including admission to the grounds.
Meet at Perkins Visitor Center
Zoom With Laurie Berkner
Laurie Berkner is performing two special "Valentine's Day" LIVE Virtual Family Concerts on Sunday, February 13 at Noon and 5 p.m. Eastern Time. The shows will feature songs about love such as "A Hug From My Mama," "I Love You Daddy" and "My Family," along with some of her greatest hits, including "We Are The Dinosaurs," "Victor Vito," "Pig On Her Head" and "Rocketship Run." A family ticket grants admission to one or both livestreams.
Love-ly Throw Pillows
Sometimes you need to make a statement and have it live on your living room furniture every single day. Just ask Alexandra Ferguson, who is all about the love (we’re partial to her ‘Love Lives Here’ pillow for sure), and has been designing recycled felt pillows featuring fun and sassy phrases using die-cut letters sewn in her Brooklyn warehouse for the last 12 year. To order, visit her website or her Etsy shop. Prices start at $64.
Arranging Box DIY Flowers
Anyone can grab roses from a corner bodega and arrive home with a smile and a stunning dozen, but Arranging Box curates fresh blooms and help you expertly style them. Make an arrangement for your beloved, or gift them the kit if that's up their alley. All kits come with fresh flowers, a flower recipe box and step-by-step designing tutorials created by the company’s founder, a savvy floral designer who pivoted to create this company during the pandemic. $59 and up.
Glitter Heart Slides From Annie's Blue Ribbon General Store
Maybe these are for your little valentine, maybe they are for you. Either way, they're fab. Pick some up ($14) at Annie's Blue Ribbon General Store in Brooklyn or online.
Forever Bracelets at Catbird
Nothing says forever like...forever. Catbird will zap (i.e., weld) a dainty bracelet on a wrist to be a constant reminder of love. (Of course, you can take them off if you really need to.) Get one for someone special, get a matching pair, etc. Prices start at $98. Minimum age is 10. Weldings are by appointment only a the Soho location.
253 Centre St.
Name a Bronx Zoo Cockroach
Can you love a cockroach? The Bronx Zoo says "yes!" and this Valentine’s Day you can name one of the Zoo’s Madagascar hissing cockroaches. The full package comes with roach beanie, a pair of roach socks, a printed certificate with your roach’s name and a very crawly Virtual Encounter with one—and a surprise animal guest too. From $15.
—Lambeth Hochwald & Mimi O’Connor