Valentine’s Day: Nine Inimitable Ways of Saying I Love You
Love from Africa!
There are many happy days in our calendar that give us ample excuse to haul out the bubbly wine and celebrate our loved ones – partners, friends, family and pets. For me Valentine’s Day is the succulent cherry on top of that heavenly red velvet cake! Although love in lockdown may have put a slightly different spin on how we meet, mingle and mix, the human spirit is eternally creative and adamant that love will indeed conquer all! Cupid, that cherub-like bow-and-arrowed god of affection and desire is stamping his little foot in determination to make Valentine’s Day 2021 something very special indeed (I suspect to compensate for a bittersweet 2020). After all, Valentine’s Day has its origins in the Ancient Roman festival of Lupercalia, a rather bloody affair. Thankfully all we’ve inherited from that duplicitous saga is the colour red, now associated with romantic love, phew! Let’s not delve into history, nor question Cupid’s motives, let’s instead join the little fellow on his amorous quest and celebrate love and life on February 14th!
From divine diamonds to delectable chocolates, exceptional flowers and special outings, we’ve got you covered for Valentine’s Day – February 14th, 2021.
1. Say It with a Girl’s (and a Boy’s) Best Friend
Tiny shiny stones that pack a punch, glittery little showstoppers with connotations of light and love, purity and commitment, beauty and strength …. there is but one gemstone that ticks all these boxes, lovingly referred to as ‘tears of the gods’ in medieval Europe: the unrivalled and precious diamond.
Thérèse De Villiers Jewellery has created the ultimate must-have piece, marrying flawless local diamonds with their eternally trusted partner in romance, South African gold. The DIAMOND AND GOLD STACK RING is hand manufactured in 9ct gold with specially selected diamonds, to be your knight/ lady in shining armour or simply your most trusted companion throughout life. I’m hard pressed to think of a more covetable gift than these rocks on Valentine’s Day (hint, hint….).
Theresedevilliers.co.za, facebook @ThereseDeVilliersJewellery, Instagram@theresedevilliersjewellery
Marilyn Monroe, voluptuous vamp and ultimate Hollywood sex siren knew something that we all know deep down – ‘these rocks don’t lose their shape’!
2. Say It with the King of Proteas
Now – I don’t know about you, but these to me are simply the most perfectly formed specimen in the flower kingdom. The White King Protea is a little more exclusive than its red and pink cousins, which makes it even more special to me. With their velvety pointy petals and glossy dark green leaves they say so much about their natural habitat, the slopes of Table Mountain where they cling for dear life to the steep rock faces, and against all the odds manage to produce these extraordinary flowers.
Buy THE WHITE KING PROTEA from your florist or from the innumerable informal roadside flower traders all over the city and give to a special person (and that includes you!). Add a red velvet bow and voila, Valentine’s Day done and dusted in the best of local flair.
https://www.sanbi.org/gardens/kirstenbosch/, facebook @kirstenboschgiftshop, Instagram @kirstenbosch_nbg
3. Say It with a Delectable Hamper of the Yummiest Goodies
February with its guaranteed quota of sizzling hot days and long balmy evenings calls for a picnic. With secluded beaches, lush gardens and innumerable idyllic spots to choose from, this may well be one of the most romantic ways to spend Valentine’s Day.
All you need is this carefully considered selection of irresistible edible goodies from Chefs Warehouse together with your picnic blanket and sunhat. Oh, and your loved one! Settle down and enjoy – wherever you choose to be – beachside, poolside or even conveniently in your own back garden. VALENTINE’S HAMPERS for him & her available at Local at Heritage Square, Chefs Warehouse Beau Constantia, Maison & Tintswalo Atlantic.
http://www.chefswarehouse.co.za/, facebook @chefswarehousebreestreet, Instagram @chefswarehousecanteen
4. Say It with a Romantic Drive to a Surprise Location
Imagine their amazement when you collect your beloved in an exotic pillar box red, open top convertible Cobra and whisk them off on a sunset drive, skirting the Atlantic Ocean as a special Valentine’s surprise! Be sure to squirrel away a picnic blanket, food hamper and bottle of non-alcoholic wine on the backseat together with a selection of head scarves, sunglasses and flat caps for the ride. Experience the exhilarating feeling of driving a reimagined 60’s supercar on the hairpin bends around Cape Town or the Winelands. Do plan your route in advance as you’d want to keep conversation purely romantic (and not argue about navigation issues!) Think Thelma and Louise without the fatal ending.
THE COBRA EXPERIENCE conveniently operates from the heart (excuse my cheesy pun) of the city.
http://www.cobraexperience.co.za/, facebook and instagram@cobraexperiencect
5. Say It with a Substance straight from the Gods
With overt connotations of decadence and self-indulgence (speaking for myself here) chocolate is a substance so addictive it should arguably be banned from everyday access (or at least, put out of eyesight on the highest supermarket shelves)! Chocolate doesn’t only tease the tongue and tickle the taste buds, it’s a cocktail of many compound ingredients designed by nature to have us gagging for more. On Valentine’s Day, however, we’re all allowed to take guilt-free pleasure in savouring this ingenious ancient Aztec potion.
World renowned chocolateur Stephanie Ceranio at Jack Rabbit Chocolate Studio created these perfect LUXURY DARK CHOCOLATE HEARTS especially for Valentine’s Day – filled with vanilla marshmallow and salted caramel. Not that I need to convince you any further, but these hand-painted leopard beauties also come in the most exquisite packaging imaginable.
Jackrabbitchocolate.co.za, facebook @jrchocolatestudio, Instagram jackrabbit_chocolate
6. Say It with a Leopard Love Scarf
Throw on a red silk leopard print scarf and you can transform an ordinary day into an African safari experience. Now – present this to your loved one on Valentine’s day and you’ve created the perfect atmosphere and setting for a day made in savannah heaven.
Scarf designer Jundi Andrag supplies the likes of Bloomingdales, where those in the know avidly accumulate her exceptional creations. The MANTUA MASKA scarf is inspired by the beautiful patterns and colours of African animal skins and how they allow animals to camouflage themselves in nature while serving as an identification mechanism. Likewise, these are the things one of these beautiful scarves can do for you! (Not suggesting that you’re an animal by any means, mind you, but we all like our little distinctive disguises!)
I can guarantee this Valentine’s Day offering will be met with much contented purring.
http://www.mantua.co.za/, facebook and instagram @mantuasilkwear,
7. Say It with a Pair of Heartfelt Sneakers
We all know how important it is for our health to have our walking shoes on hand whatever the occasion: shoes you can stride, run and dance in (and still look a million dollars) have become our measuring stick for choosing that special pair that’ll take us from work to play, from day to evening.
To tick all the boxes look no further than these iconic beauties from Comme des Garçons at the uber stylish Maison Mara. These cotton trainers with their endearing heart logo designed by Filip Pagowski for COMME DES GARÇONS PLAY will literally put a new spin on your Valentine’s Day offering and a big smile on your Valentine’s face. Better still, why not invest in a pair of these for the both of you – you’ll find that your heart-to-heart chats may just go down so much better!
http://maisonmara.co.za/, facebook and Instagram @MaisonMaracapetown
8. Say It with High Tea in Clementina’s Red Cup
Reminiscent of crack-of-dawn breakfasts at a Karoo farm and equally elegant in the fanciest of High Tea settings …. Clementina’s iconic red glazed Karoo cup holds its own very confidently.
These covetable cups aren’t only comforting to handle and extremely special to drink from, they’re bound to transform your Valentine’s Day table into something very special indeed. Every cup is handmade with oodles of love, each is a one-off creation and no two are alike! Whether you’re displaying them on your red and white gingham picnic blanket or as part of your Valentine’s Afternoon Tea with cucumber sandwiches and scones, these red cups will arouse passion! Do you need any more convincing to order at least 6 of these lovelies? From then onwards every day can be Valentine’s Day, yes?
http://www.clementina.co.za/, facebook @ClementinaCeramics, Instagram @clementinaceramics
9. Say It with a pair of blush pink Valentine’s Vellies
As the relationship between your loved one’s feet and these super comfortable vellies (colloquial name for a traditional shoe made of local leather or suede) blossoms, you, as the giver of these beauties, may also stand to gain some credit. Apart from being the most comfortable Valentine’s Day gift you’ll ever give, these are quite arguably also one of the most versatile and stylish.
Always ready for an adventure, these LITE BLUSH VELLIES from Freedom of Movement will no doubt put a spring into your Valentine’s step. As their motto proclaims, “Just like any other lasting relationship, some groundwork will have to be done.” You may want to lay the foundations on February 14th.
https://freedomofmovement.co.za/, facebook and Instagram @FOMbrand