6 Alternative Valentine’s Day Presents

Shake up your Valentine’s Day with these lovely twists on the classic gifts.


Once upon a time, there was a girl and a boy. Then, the girl walked into a dive bar …

OK, so the love story of your life is a tad unconventional. Don’t expect any nightingales, balconies or verse. In fact, your prince or princess charming is also little less ordinary, a little more rock 'n' roll—and that means the everyday Valentine’s Day clichés just won’t do. Pick something fittingly fierce and fun for your badass romance, such as one of these alt gifts that are as wild at heart as your special someone.

Go ahead—share the love.


1. Bacon roses

A dozen red roses? Yawn. Throw a little bacon in there and you’ve got a winning bouquet anyone will fall head over heels for. Just buy a dozen fake roses from the craft store and pop off the flower tops. Twirl raw bacon strips into little “rose” spirals, fasten with toothpicks and bake in the oven at about 375 degrees until secure and crispy, about 35 minutes. Finally, stick the bacon rosettes onto the (cleaned) flower stems. Voila! Bacon bouquet! The best part? These babies don’t wilt. Mostly because they’ll be scarfed down before they have a chance to.


2. Chocolate-dipped jalapeños

If your love, sweet love, tends to veer more toward the spicy, skip the chocolate-dipped strawberries and go for more fire with these chocolate-covered jalapeños. Not only are they attractive, but they also have that perfect mix of heat and sweet for your firecracker of a Valentine.


3. Beer candy

Now, we’re not saying we don’t love a box of Dove chocolates. We’re just saying we might like it a lot more if there were beer in it. Add some into your lover’s gift with this luscious beer-and-pretzel caramel recipe from Taste of Home. Beer + pretzels = a swoon-worthy combination.


4. Heart-shaped pizza

Your bae not really a chocolate person, but hates feeling left out? Not all of us go for the sugar when it comes to lovin’ (some of us are more the hoagie-and-pizza type), so give a treat that fits your sweetie’s taste. A nice heart-shaped chocolate box (snag one from the drugstore or go all out with a DIY craft-store version) will do well for a mold. Roll out your pizza dough and cut it out with the upside-down box. (Take a little extra dough off the edges to make sure it fits in the box after baking.) Top it with your beloved’s favorite pizza-rific toppings (perhaps even heart-shaped pepperoni), bake it to perfection (try this recipe here) and pop it back into the box. Your love will be in for a delicious surprise when your everyday box of chocolates turns out to be hiding a much heartier surprise.


5. Succulents

Flowers die. Bacon flowers get eaten. Love is everlasting, so why not give a gift that—more or less—is as well? Succulents are almost harder to kill than they are to keep alive, so they’re especially suited for the lazy, the black-thumbed and the romantic (“for ever and ever and ever, amen”) among us. Plus, all those cute planters at Paiko have real “aww” quality—win! Paiko, 675 Auahi St., 988-2165.


6. Irreverent teddy

Sure, that plush bunny with the sign that says “You Are The Wind Beneath My Wings” makes a great extra pillow for when you have house guests. But that kind of sappiness is about as far from something you’d actually say as it gets, amirite? Talk about impersonal. Tell it to ’em straight with one of these irreverent Love Is Lame teddies, which is sure to make your boo smile—or maybe even laugh out loud.