Hill House Dress
A guide to Valentine’s Day gifting in the time of COVID
Valentine’s Day is now upon us, and it’s going to be an unusual one for sure. But just because it’s going to be different, doesn’t mean it isn’t going to be wonderful. Still, if everything going on is stifling your creative juices when it comes to the perfect gift, here are a few suggestions to get the ideas flowing again.
— Jenny Block
Dress the Part
These Nap Dresses from Hill House are so dreamy, seriously. The fabrics are so lovely and soft, and the dresses look and feel fabulous on — perfect for quarantine lounging in style. And the Bridgerton vibe is hard to resist. … The Story Of makes the dreamiest of dresses out of the most heavenly fabrics for anyone who likes to feel like they’re meandering in the tropics, even if the kitchen is as far as the apple of your eye is going these days.
Aryka Randall, filmmaker, author and founder of TTF Mag, has a line of sweatshirts and tees that are irresistible with bold statements as simple as TOMBOY and as FEMME. Trust me, you’ll love them. A wrap from Bleusault is always a welcome gift because they are made of the softest fabric ever and can be worn in more ways then you’ll ever get to try. Seeing as we’re all still spending most of our time at home — or we should be, anyway — jeans that look like they’re for going out but feel like they’re for staying in are key. Enter Mott & Bow; your Valentine will swoon for sure.
When the one you dig does get to leave the building, if you want to give back and give a gift, the FEED Work Bag is fashionable, functionable and adored by celebs. If getting chilly is your Valentine’s MO, the Original Rumpl Puffy Blanket outdoor blanket is a packable, portable blanket that goes everywhere. With a ripstop shell and insulation made from 100 percent recycled materials, it’s warmer and more durable than ever.
Into every life a little rain must fall, so if you’re wondering if all of the fuss about the Davek umbrella makes sense, the answer is yes. It’s a real smooth operator and a beast in the wind. And the teeny one is so teeny! And yet still functional!
And since these days we never know what we’ll encounter when we leave the house, prepare the one who holds your heart with this silly but practical gift: The Original Pickle Box. It’s got a baseball cap, cotton shopping bag, pair of sunglasses, lip balm, matches, three face masks, hand sanitizer, toothpicks, tweezers, nail clippers, sewing kit, tissues, alcohol wipes and bandages.
If you want to give the gift of peace of mind and help keep your Valentine’s phone safe when they have to step away, the AquaVault PhoneVault Personal Safe allows them to do just that.
Soon, we’re going to get to leave the house safely. I promise. Why not give a gift of that promise with season tickets to the 2021-2022 Germania Insurance Broadway Series, presented by Dallas Summer Musicals. The six-show package includes Jersey Boys, Hadestown, Jesus Christ Superstar, Mean Girls, Oklahoma and Frozen, with options to add Hamilton, Wicked and Rent. It’s going to be a spectacular season.
If you’re looking for Valentine’s gifts that are particularly practical during this peculiar time, Sanikind is an Earth-friendly hand-sanitizer with really cute refillable containers in lots of cute colors — complete with carabiner for easy attaching! For something that brings a little light in the darkness, And the People Stayed Home by Kitty O’Meara is an illustrated poem that is sure to do the trick.
All things beauty have been tricky to keep up with staying at home. Here are a few items that make it a little easier: the TatBrow Microblade Pen to whip those brows in shape; the Nailboo Dip Kit lets you give a manicure that’s dangerously close to what you get at the salon, and Murad Intense recovery cream and rapid dark spot correcting serum will help keep your Valentine’s skin from looking like it hasn’t seen the inside of a spa for the last year. If a tan is part of your love’s beauty routine, they’re going to dig the Pure line from Bondi Sands with Hyaluronic Acid, Vitamin C and Vitamin E.
Fruit of the Vine
Sometimes the best gift is the simplest gift, like a lovely bottle of wine. Nice Wines is doing a Bouquet of Rosés that include a half-dozen impressive dry rosés all wrapped up with a pretty red bow. If you prefer your rose bubbly — or your bubbly a rose — Mionetto has a rose prosecco that is the prettiest pale pink. Weed Cellars offers a sparkling rose at a super affordable price point. (The name harkens to the lifestyle not the ingredients.) If beautiful pinot noirs are what you’re on the prowl for, you’ll want to know about Red Electric Armstrong Vineyard, an Oregon wine from the Willamette Valley. Speaking of Oregon, take a minute to consider Remy Wines, owned by lesbian winemaker Remy Drabkin, with impressive offerings from Washington state as well.
There’s no Place like Home
Since we are spending so much time at home, we might as well make home the nicest possible place to be. Nanor candles in scents like Opulent and Ambrosial are a no-brainer if you’re looking for a romantic gift that keeps giving. And, although it’s for the body and not for the house, I have to mention yummy Nanor’s Rose Scrub, too, which has the same effect.
The heaven-sent Always Pan should be called the Everything Pan because it basically does, well, everything — all with its super-duper non-stick surface, wood spatula, steamer basket and lid. I don’t generally gush about cookware. But I love everything about this pan. And we are cooking at home a lot these days.
And goodness knows we could all use a good night’s sleep these days. The Black-lesbian-owned Nap Bar is where you go for the nap of your life, but while it’s closed due to COVID, you can treat your sweet to their Perfect Sleep Box, complete with Soy Based Candle, Vegan Aromatherapy Pillow Mist, Blackout Sleep Mask, Theta Brain Wave Sounds and one bonus item.
And when the one you want to spoil needs to tune in to tune it all out, they’ll love this idea: Every month Skullcandy offers a new Mood Boost Bundle with kick-ass headphones and artsy surprises. This month they’re helping everyone feel a little more Feisty, offering their Indy ANC True Wireless Earbuds in Feisty Pink. With proceeds from the sale helps “people find hope and treatment for mental health issues through non-profit movement, To Write Love on Her Arms.” Great sound and a great cause.
My Furry Valentine
If you want to treat your furbaby this Valentine’s Day, you might as well do it in the healthiest way possible. The Bow Wow Labs Bully Buddy keeps your buddy from choking on bully sticks and their Waggy Wafers are as loved by dogs as they are good for them. If you want to really spoil your waggers rotten, Olympia Provisions now offers Pet Provisions, charcuterie for dogs which is way too easily mistaken for the human kind!
All Things Bright and Beautiful
If you want to treat your someone like beauty royal, gift them with a treat from Charlotte Tilbury, like her Flawless Filters, perfect for selfies and Zoom calls, and Hayaluronic Happikiss for color and plump. If your person’s more of a skincare kind of person, gift the Fluffy Cloud Pineapple Party Mask and Cream which is all about giving you that dewy look that’s all the rage. And if you really want to go all out, check out Cle de Peau’s sumptuous Volumizing Crème. I won’t say it’s magic. But it’s as close as cream in a jar can get.
Maybe innovation is more your Valentine’s cup of tea, in which case they’ll really dig the Sola Wave Wand that combines microcurrents, red light therapy, warming, and vibration. Think insta facial in the palm of your hand! And for a gift that looks as good as it smells, Dolce & Gabbana Dolce Rose celebrates the most classic symbol of love — the rose — in sweet luxury.
Always Wise to Accessorize
If your love likes to accessorize, there are so many fun things to choose from. Kendra Scott is doing the sweetest little heart focused pieces, in their Ari Heart collection, including pendant necklaces and bracelets that come in a silver or gold with a plethora of stone color choices. Looking for something practical and adorable? Keebos makes super cute phone cases that have long straps for cross body carrying and pockets on the back for cards and IDs.
Wrist Pop is a pretty clever way to up one’s Apple Watch game with scarf watch bands in patterns from classic to artsy. The Dusk band with skulls and snakes and swords is pretty cool. Ekster has this super chic cardholder with RFID blocking that’s très James Bond and an equally-sleek laptop sleeve that organizes all the must-haves.
If your Valentine would appreciate a pair of readers that look really cool and protect their beautiful baby blues (or browns or greens or… ) check out Caddis’ blue blocking stunners. (Obsessed with the Matte Gopher!)