Not Just For Lovers: Gifts For Everyone This Valentine’s Day

Forget all those old-school notions about Valentine’s Day. These days Feb. 14 is less about romance and more about taking the time to let the important people in your life know that you care. Although flowers and heart-shaped boxes of candy are nice and all, we’ve got some gift ideas to really help you say “I love you” in a way they won’t soon forget.

Anam Cara Soul Friend or Braille Sisters Necklace

Good friends are worth their weight in gold, or in this case, polished sterling silver. The Anam Cara Soul Friend necklace inscribed with “Soul Friend” on one side and “Anam Cara” on the other signifies the old Celtic spiritual belief that when you form a close bond with another person, your souls begin to flow together. Once the deep bond is formed it is said that you’ve found your “Anam Cara,” or soul friend ($49). If your dearest friend happens to be your sister, there’s also a Braille Sisters necklace ($58.99) that spells out the word “Sisters” in Braille and includes a personalized message.

Custom Photo Blanket

Help take the chill off cold winter nights with a photo blanket customized with your own photographs. Using up to seven of your favorite pictures, create a blanket of memories for that special someone to wrap up in. It’s the perfect gift for someone far away or a way to use snapshots of your favorite vacation, event or holiday to make a lasting keepsake. The blankets come in various sizes and fabrics, including fleece and cotton. Your photos can also be made into throw pillows and pillowcases as well. Prices range from $39.99 to $109.00.

Don’t Knock The Socks

Once upon a time receiving socks as a gift was like getting a slice of Aunt Edna’s fruit cake, but not anymore. Novelty socks are the newest “it” thing in accessories for any age or gender and there’s a pair to fit every personality. There are endless patterns, including music composers and famous people like John F. Kennedy and Albert Einstein, along with just about anything else you can think of ranging from pugs, ninja warriors, gnomes, hot dogs, tuxedos and fruit, to fawns, scissors, dinosaurs and footballs. The socks come in various sizes including ankle and knee high. They range in price from $7.99 to $12.99.

Entwined Hearts Sculpture

Two hearts meet as one in this handcrafted, soapstone sculpture from Ten Thousand Villages. Representing love and the interconnectedness of two people, the sculpture is made from local artisans in Kenya who benefit from the sales. Other sculptures are available, including the Eternal Love Sculpture, Love’s Embrace, Parent and Child Statue and Joy of Family Statue. Each is handmade and serves as a reminder of a special relationship. Sculptures come with a story card explaining their meaning and background. Sculptures and statues range from $20 to $69.

Man Crates

With a manifesto that says “no” to ugly neckties, cologne samplers and executive trinkets, Man Crates promise to deliver awesome gifts for men. And they may just be on to something. Shipped in wood crates that need to be opened with a crowbar, they offer a variety of guy-centric gifts, including a Zombie Survival Crate that comes with “combat essentials” like a zombie flashlight, duct tape, first aid kit and zombie survival manual. There are also other guy crates like the Cow-Pocalypse Crate, filled with beef jerky; a Retro Gamer Crate with candy from days gone by; and a Golfer’s Crate complete with a DVD of “Caddyshack.” Man Crates start at $39.99.

Ooh La La Macaroons

If you can’t bring the one you love to Paris then bring a little Paris to the one you love with these oh-so-delectable macaroons from MacarOn Café in New York City. Made fresh daily in dozens of flavors like dark chocolate, espresso, peanut butter and jelly, crème brulée, maple chestnut, mocha and caramel, there’s no doubt that your recipient will be saying, “Oui, oui!” You can purchase a luxury macaroon gift box, which comes in several sizes and is filled with assorted cookies. MacarOn Café ships nationwide and prices start at around $39.

Why You’re So Awesome Book

Instead of just saying it, put it in print with this sweet little book that helps you tell your spouse, kids, parents or whoever why you think they are great. Short prompts allow the writer to fill in memories, stories and inside jokes that never get old. For your sweetheart there’s also the “12 Ways to Say I Love You” journal that helps the writer tell the recipient how they feel in creative ways, including “The top five songs that make me think of you” or “My favorite way to spend the day with you is…” Other fill-in books include “What I Wish For You,” “What I Love About You” and “What I Love About Mom.” $10 to $28.

Cloud 9 Living

Does your favorite person wish he or she could race a stock car? Pilot a fighter jet? Experience America’s Cup sailing? Ride in a hot air balloon? If so, then help make that dream come true by purchasing one of the Cloud 9 Living packages that offer “unique and memorable experiences as gifts.” Ranging in price from around $50 on up, experiences include sailing aboard tall ships, whale watching, sky diving, spa days, wine tours, flying helicopters, indoor sky diving and just about anything else you can think of. Hint: The Fighter Pilot for a Day is among the most popular for men ($1,395).

Beer Or Wine Of The Month Club

Why celebrate someone you love for just one day, when you can remind them how much you care at least once a month? Consider enrolling your special someone up in a beer or wine-of-the-month club. Each month the recipient receives 12 bottles of handcrafted beer or up to six bottles of beer in the Rare Beer Club. In the wine club, recipients receive two bottles monthly, each from a different international winery. You are able choose between two reds, two whites or one of each. Both the beers and wines come with detailed notes and profiles explaining their history and suggested pairings. Other monthly clubs include cheese, chocolate, cigars and flowers. Prices start at $24.95, plus shipping and handling.

Message In A Bottle

Whether you’d like to send an S.O.S to the world, or just someone special, Personal Creations allows you to create your own message in a bottle. Printed on parchment and inserted into a 7-inch glass bottle, you can customize the name, a five-line message and finish up with a two-line sentiment. It also comes with sand, seashells and tiny paper umbrella to complete the beach theme. You won’t have to hope that someone gets your message; they definitely will with this unique and thoughtful gift. Romantic Message in a Bottle, $19.99.

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