Good Valentine's Day Gifts

Feb. 14 baffles even the most practiced of gift-givers. That's Valentine's Day and if you didn't know that, you'll really appreciate our guide to the most romantic gifts.valentine's gift ideas

Valentine's Day is too often treated like a rodeo. With weapons of lace and flowers we try to wrestle our favorite heart from the herd.

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But hearts are unruly creatures. A national holiday isn't enough to tame them, and they sneer at our ill-crafted tools: You thought you'd get me with that?

We would do better to refer to legend and fantasy than to the Wild West. Lancelot, Galahad, even the Hobbit. All these heroes knew that only a weapon enchanted by its maker can overcome a magical creature.

To win a heart, you need a charm made expressly (by you) to conquer your loved one and your loved one only. Use our Valentine's ideas to win fair colt, dragon or maiden,  whatever your pleasure.

Name gifts: Engraving and monogramming turn an ordinary object into an intimate gift. Both processes require forethought and subtle hinting to obtain middle names. Your perseverance will be rewarded.

Representational gifts: A shell from your recent trip reminded you of their pink and white skin, a smooth rock you found in the woods echoed their grace and strength. Showing that you see them in everything is romantic.

Memory gifts: Lilacs for the season in which you met, the perfume or cologne that they were wearing on your first date. You remember, of course, because your life changed at that moment. Right?

"I listen" gifts: A tea set like the one their grandmother used on rainy days. The jacket they dreamed of having in college because they thought that would mean they'd "made it." Show them their stories don't fall on deaf ears. Try auction sites like Etsy or Sothebys for one-of-a-kind gifts.

Everyday loves and hates: They love yellow Starbursts and only yellow ones. Sort out a huge bowlful. They hate taking the bus more than anything. Arrange a ride for them for a week, whether via taxi or your own four wheels. No Web site. This one's all

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