Today is the day we celebrate those we love in an extra special way! We started a fancy Valentine’s Day dinner tradition with the boys a few years back. They look forward to it–especially the food! I make one of my most liked recipes, my Vodka Cream Pasta with Prosciutto. They all gobble it up like it is going to be their last supper. It is one of those recipes I am proud of because I tweaked it and made it my own.
Today, I am sharing our Valentine’s Day table with you. I think it is fun to create special occasions in your home. Those little family traditions that make your family special. I love to have my family around the dinner table and spend an evening enjoying their company… and delicious food. So, naturally, we do the fancy feast with a decked out table every year.
I thought it would be fun to show you guys how I save money doing this every year. You might think that creating a beautiful table could cost a lot, but I am going to show you how I keep the cost down every year.
Splurge v. Save
Splurge. First things first, you got to know what to splurge on. When I say splurge, translate that into what it means for you. I choose to splurge on the basics that can be reused dinner after dinner. White china is a great investment and transitions to so many occasions. We actually use this white china for our every day set too and it has held up going on 12 years now. It is just the classic white china from Pier 1. Not expensive, but if your wallet is a little tighter you can find basic white china at the dollar store. I would shoot for dinner plates. You can always add in a new look with a patterned appetizer plate or napkin.
I also think a basic white tablecloth that washes up nicely is another item to splurge on. You can change runners, placemats, and center pieces over a white tablecloth. Mine was not expensive at all and I found it at Target. It has held up just fine over the years.
One more table item I think is worth the splurge is a fresh floral bouquet. It’s great when the weather is nice and you can just go out in the yard and clip greens and flowers. In the dead of winter,a quick trip to the grocery store for flowers is cost-effective. This bouquet was only $15 and it will keep for at least a week with proper care. Flowers on a table just make a table feel more expensive and beautiful.
Save. Now that you have the basics the rest you can get really creative with. You don’t have to buy a table runner. You can make one. I love to use uncommon things for runners. I’ve used full length mirrors, art paper, scarves, and all kinds of things. I like to shop my house first. This year I had enough of this gold striped wrapping paper left over. It makes a fun runner.
Reuse items. Now I like to layer my table, so I took an old Halloween runner and flipped it over and added the greek key ribbon left over from a DIY project. I save clippings of fabric and ribbons from projects just for occasions like these.
Shop thrift stores and clearance sales. I found our Italian crystal bar glasses at a flea market new in the box. The whole set was $7. I had just seen the same set at TJ Maxx for a lot more and know it retails a lot higher. Our chargers are from Goodwill. 50 cents each. The appetizer plates were an after Christmas Target clearance item. Only $5 something for all 4. If you are looking to save and have a little patience, you can find the best things if you are willing to shop thrift stores and wait for clearance sales.
Make your own decorations.Sure you can buy seasonal decor, but I really like to make my own and it’s free! Scrapbook paper is my go-to for crafts. I made these DIY heart arrows a couple of weeks back using stuff from around the house. Kebabs and paper, that’s all it is. My heart paper punch got a work out this holiday and I used the left over hearts on the table like confetti. The calligraphy phrases were a free printable and I just printed and glued them to paper.
I can’t wait to enjoy this table setting with my favorite people tonight! I wish you all a Happy Valentine’s Day!!