Shop local this Valentine's Day
Alexa, play 'Love is in the Air'.
With just over two weeks to go until Valentine's Day, you'd better get shopping for gifts pronto if you don't want to end up in the doghouse (again) this year.
While you're at it, you might as well show your local independents some love, too. After all, you're not going to find gifts as unique as these anywhere else.
Here's a few of our favourite indie businesses in the North West to get you started. As for your romantic playlist...we can't help you with that one I'm afraid.
Bubble mouth-blown vase by Dutz
Where better to put your Valentine's flowers than in a beautiful new vase? Designed by Dutz, this smokey grey bubble vase is as unique as it is gorgeous, thanks to every piece being individually hand-blown by mouth, resulting in different bubble placements.
£45 from lucilleandgrace.co.uk
Buddleia print by Helena Lee
Helena Lee, a photographic artist living in Manchester, celebrates the beauty and wonder of nature through her artwork. The Buddleia, known as the 'butterfly blush', is a common sight along railway lines and waste ground in the UK. Originally introduced from China in the 1890s, this beautiful specimen was found by Helena on Bridgewater Street, just off the Oxford Road Corridor.
£20 from manchestermuseumshop.com
Retreat candle by Old Man and Magpie
Help them relax with this beautiful candle, inspired by a collection of plant specimens dating back many decades, known as the herbarium at Manchester Museum. The Retreat fragrance has a citrus, fresh and floral scent with notes of Orange, Lavender and Geranium and is available in two sizes.
£18/£22 from manchestermuseumshop.com
Bee tile by The Sculpts
Us Northerners, we love a good cup of tea. So what better to put your mug of tea on than a beautiful coaster from The Sculpts? From letters with iconic Manchester buildings for a personalised touch, to the good, old fashioned worker bee, there's something to suit every Manc in your life.
£30 from manchestermuseumshop.com
Can't decide on which rum to choose for them?
Play it safe and get them a tasting set containing all three best-selling flavours. This gift set includes Original Spiced Rum (40% ABV, 5cl), Dark Spice Rum (40% ABV, 5cl) and Honey Rum (37.5% ABV, 5cl).
£15.95 from salfordrum.com
RELAXATION Massage Candle by Moi & Me
This massage candle is uniquely blended with aromatherapy oils like sandalwood, jasmine, evening primrose, and lavender; each of which are known for their healing properties. Perfect for those intimate moments with your partner.
£29.74 from moiandme.com
Valentine's Tapas Board-in-a-Box
Prefer a night in with good food and a movie? Then this Valentine's board-in-a-box is the ideal treat to sharing with your other half. Packed with artisanal goodies from Granada, Spain, like cheese, cured meats, olives, crackers and hand-painted chocolates, all that's left to do is find a romantic film and settle in for the evening.
Place your order now in time for the big day. What's more, Confidentials readers can enjoy an exclusive 10% discount with code CONFID10.
From £38.50 from abeja-tapas.com
XL Luxury Hair Wrap
Does your other half love their hair almost as much as they love you? If so, you'll want to treat them to this towel that cuts hair drying time in half. Bigger than your standard hair towel, this product can contain even the fullest heads of hair and uses moisture-absorbent material to dry hair in no time. Available in pink, teal, violet and grey.
£17.95 from hairmadeeasi.com
Put the spice back into your relationship, literally. These adorable spice tins by local Manchester restaurant Zouk taste as good as they look. Treat them to a home-cooked Indian meal that'll be so good they'll be you asking for the recipe.
£6 each from zoukteabar.co.uk
Organic sparkling wine by ThinK
Low-carb, low-sugar, vegan and organic? Could this stuff get any better?
Can't decide which flavour to pop the cork on this Valentine's Day? Don't worry, ThinK sell their Prosecco and sparkling rose as a pair, meaning that once the bottle's ran out, there's always another to keep the fun times flowing.
£40.99 from thinkwinegroup.co.uk
WSET-certified wine tasting course
Are they something of a wine connoisseur? Give the gift of knowledge this Valentine's Day with a Wine & Spirit Education Trust (WSET) approved wine course. Take the globally-recognised Level 1 and Level 2 Award in Wines courses online from the comfort of your own home or in person at one of the wine schools across the UK. There's also a Level 1 Spirits course available.
From £160 from manchesterwinetours.com
This raspberry-infused gin is one of Manchester Gin's best-sellers, and it's no wonder why. It's packed full of fresh, fruity flavours and is delicately sweet with a beautiful pink hue. Think their favourite pink gin but even better. Trust us, they'll love this one.
From £19 from spiritofmanchester.co.uk
Leopard throw blanket from The Neighbourhood Threat
Is there anything better than getting cosy under a blanket with your beau? I doubt it.
Add a bit of colour to your home with this beautifully bold and bright throw, crafted in Lancashire at a factory that's been manufacturing woven textiles for over 150 years. Created using recycled cotton, this stunning blanket is made with minimal waste.
£195 from theneighbourhoodthreat.co.uk
'Love Bugs' hotel package
Taking your date away for the weekend? Take advantage of FlatCap Hotels' 'Love Bugs' getaway package. Enjoy champagne on arrival, chocolate dipped strawberries, supper, an overnight stay in one of their boutique hotels and a delicious breakfast in the morning. It's the ultimate romantic getaway. Available at The Bridge in Prestbury or The Vicarage in Cranage.
£195 from flatcaphotels.com
Have I missed you off this list? Drop me an email at firstname.lastname@example.org with your favourite product, website and an image. 🎁
Thinking of proposing this Valentine's Day?
CitySuites II, Manchester's luxury aparthotel is offering an extra special gift for five lucky couples who get engaged at CitySuites II or Embankment Kitchen between 12-18 February.
Each couple will receive a free stay in a premium two bed apartment, complete with king sized beds, a spacious living area and special treats like a bottle of Prosecco on arrival and truffles made by the hotel's in-house patisserie chef.
- Tag @citysuitesuk on Instagram showing proof of your engagement during your visit to CitySuites II or Embankment Kitchen.
- Engagements must be made at CitySuites II or Embankment Kitchen between 12-18 February 2024.
- Your complimentary stay will be subject to availability in our Two Bedroom Premium apartments in CitySuites II.
- Prize must be redeemed by 31st December 2024.
- Up to five stays available – winners will be drawn from a hat if more than five entries.
Embankment Kitchen is open from Tuesday to Saturday, 4-10pm, with food served from 5pm.
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