Valentine’s Day is next week, love birds, this is not a drill! Valentine’s Day also falls on a Tuesday this year, talk about ill timing. I’m not sure about you, but dealing with crowded restaurants that requires you to give up your first born child for an impossible-to-get reservation doesn’t sound as enticing after long day of work. However, staying in and cooking a delicious dinner is way more up our alley!
Anytime our home becomes the date destination I usually like to transform our space to make the occasion feel more special than a regular dinner at home. It can be as easy as lighting a bunch of candles to set the mood, to as in-depth as removing major furniture from a room and creating a whole new look for the evening. This year we decided to go all out and really make Valentine’s Day a night to remember.
The moment I saw Benjamin Moore’s Color of the Year, “Shadow”, I knew it was love at first sight. There was no denying my affection for it. So when I starting thinking of ways to incorporate this moody, yet intriguing shade of silvery purple, our “Valentine’s Date Night In” became the most obvious opportunity to let this color shine. With “Shadow” leading the way, gold was a natural combination that added warmth and brightness. To finish off the palette was a bold pop of fuchsia.
Since the Benjamin Moore’s Color of the Year, “Shadow”, is such a new and very unique color, finding things in that color was not an easy task. But I think we managed to do a somewhat stellar job and we honestly went with more of a “shades” of Shadow thing, vs getting everything exact. But can we talk about those chairs and how crazy close they are? I walked into World Market in search of dinnerware and ended up walking out with these amazing chairs in the perfect shade of Shadow. I was beside myself!
If anything says romance on Valentine’s Day it’s candles. Set the mood of your “date night in” by having plenty of candles in all shapes and sizes. We scored these incredibly tall taper candles (9 for $10) and the gold pillar candles (an after-Christmas sale for $0.99 each) both at Ikea. In my opinion, Ikea is one of the best go-to places to find inexpensive decor items for almost any dinner party. They are a lifesaver!
On top of the taper and pillar candles, while wandering through Pottery Barn we discovered these soft pink glasses etched with an intricate gold detailing, and knew they had to be part of the dinner that night. Another one of those after-Christmas clearance finds! Woot Woot! We used them as votive holders, water glasses and vases to hold our “pop of fushia” floral arrangements.
On one of my usual jaunts through Pinterest I came across the most beautiful tassel backdrop from the Ruffled blog. Not only was the entire photo shoot simply AMAZING (#designgoals), but the whimsical and bohemian feel the tassels gave to the overall look makes my heart skip a beat.
We went with a more scaled down approach for our tassel backdrop, but you can grab the tutorial from the Ruffled blog post and do how ever much you please! We went with Lion Brand – Vanna’s Choice Yarn, in Purple and used about 8 skeins (balls) of yarn. We suspended the backdrop from 3M hooks attached to the ceiling.
I love how our glass table clashes a bit with our french-style chairs, so I didn’t want to lose that with a huge tablecloth. Instead we went to our local fabric warehouse and spent some decent time combing the aisles to find this rich satin fabric. We used the fabric as is – no hemming or sewing necessary. Simply turn under any side seams and allow the fabric to cascade to the ground.
We used a piece of the same fabric to drape over the cake table as well.
Chocolate Lavender Truffle Cake
It isn’t Valentine’s Day without a little bit of chocolate, am I right? Our Chocolate Lavender Truffle Cake is the perfect way to end your romantic Valentine’s Date Night In. Dense chocolate cake layered with rich chocolate truffle ganache and a note of delicate lavender gets wrapped in buttercream frosting tinted to a deep dark “Shadow” color. A pop of fuchsia flowers makes this cake a show stopper.
How cute are these “Love” signs? To get the exact shade of “Shadow” we purchased a small sample size of Benjamin Moore paint (Shadow 2117-30) for $7.99 and used it to paint our “Love” signs for each place setting. But it gets even better! See those dip-dyed napkins? We used the same paint to get that effect.
How to: Mixed 1 part paint, 1 part fabric medium and 2 parts water in a deep plastic bowl. Evenly and carefully dip one end of your napkin into the paint mixture. Remove from mixture and allow any excess to drain back into bowl. Hang napkin from a hanger that has clips and allow to dry over a large old sink or wide bin. Repeat with remaining napkins. Note: these napkins probably won’t wash well, since the paint will likely dye the remaining white portion a faint grey. I purchased a 4 pack of cloth napkins from Home Goods for 6 bucks, so tossing them after the dreamy night won’t make me cry a thousand tears. Now breaking one of those amazing champagne glasses will, let me tell you!
Blackberry Gin-Ginger Champagne Cocktail
To set the mood a room filled with glowing candles is the perfect thing, but to really get things started, a bubbly cocktail is always in order! We recommend this mouth-watering Blackberry Gin-Ginger Champagne Cocktail. Having the champagne glasses pre-filled with blackberries, gin and blackberry-ginger syrup allows you and your significant other to pop open their own personal bottles of champagne and pour at their leisure. I love this added touch and it guarantees a fresh cocktail, since we all know champagne can go stale quite quickly.
Roses, carnations, alstroemeria and seeded eucalyptus look dashing surrounded by our shades of “Shadow”. My go-to place for flowers that won’t break the bank is definitely Trader Joes. You may need to check a few locations, since they don’t all carry the same selection.
Bacon Wrapped Scallops with Truffled Butternut Squash Puree
Adam and I love to cook – well, I love to cook and he loves to help me eat it – but some times he will jump in and help me do a course by course dinner. It’s a great way to make the night last for hours and have a lot of fun.
Our usual process is to prep as many of the ingredients as possible for each course, with wine to pair. We will light all of the candles and start on the first course. Once it’s ready, we sit down and enjoy, taking in every bite and how it pairs with that wine. When that course is finished, we will go back to the kitchen and cook the next course, repeating the process until we’ve worked through 4-5 courses. It’s such a great bonding experience for us! This Bacon Wrapped Scallops with Truffled Butternut Squash Puree is the ideal dish to start your course-by-course dinner.