by Ong Sze Teng
Just as we’ve left our enthusiastic Christmas cheer and upbeat New Year greetings behind, the month of love has crept upon us. Valentine’s day never fails to drive men running for the next florist or chocolatier, and restaurants and cafes unleash promotions in the name of love.
Everyone knows that the festivities aren’t complete with some form of heart shaped gifts, dove or cupid emblems, and pink and red hues painted all over gifts. But surely there’s more to Valentine’s Day than simply romance and gifts? After all, showing affection to a loved one can be done anytime, anywhere. In the first place, February 14 was never a day for demonstrating one’s love for another. In fact, the whole celebration started in the third century in Rome, and ironically, is started when a stern ruler labeled love as an unnecessary emotion.
Records state that Emperor Claudius II had the notion that men were restricted from giving their utmost in battle, if their mind was on their wives or lovers. With a sweep of his hand, marriage was banned. Of course, this law did not pass without stirring fury and disappointment. Who could live without finding their soul mate? The concept was exactly as ridiculous as it sounded, and a certain brave, young priest called Valentine thought as much. Enraged, Valentine rebelled by marrying young couples, secretly defying the rule of Emperor Claudius II.
Yet, nothing escaped the eye of the emperor. Into prison went Valentine. Little snippets of records even suggest that Valentine himself ended up in a relationship with his jailer’s daughter. With Valentine already sentenced to death, no doubt they had little time to develop any further. Talk about star-crossed lovers. His parting words? “From your Valentine”, now a common phrase that gets butterflies fluttering in the receiver’s tummy.
It would be hundreds of years later, for his death on February 14 to be marked as a day to honour him, and for Valentine to be declared a Saint. There we go; Saint Valentine’s Day.
But why did people start giving flowers to each other? Well, Victorians had assigned different meanings to different flowers, and were able to communicate with simply those plants and not a single word. Talk about mysterious. Cards may have seemed like a better alternative, but they felt a message with your name on it was bad luck, was the start of gifting flowers with a somewhat secretive, romantic card.
No one’s a stranger to roses during Valentine. But why are they the go-to flower for any bouquet? Roses were the favourite flower of Venus, the Roman goddess of love, so what better way than using the very symbol of love for a day that celebrates it?
With the passage of time came the commercialization of the occasion. Valentine’s Day had evolved into gifts oozing in magenta and scarlet, and flowers or chocolates bundle in ribbon. It’s more about getting the most extravagant present than the most thoughtful one.
There’s nothing inherently wrong with that, but it’s about time Valentine’s became more about thought than only extravagance. A handpicked bouquet along with an elegant card is one way to show how you feel.
Couples will never miss out on the opportunity to please their other half during an occasion like Valentine’s. Sometimes, the pressure can be an obstacle in making the day a memorable one, as one would be too focused on picking out imperfections to ensure everything goes smoothly. These suggestions might make the planning a little easier.
One simple date can make your lover’s Valentine’s. As long as it’s time well spent with a loved one, how can anyone argue about a wholesome date. Grab a few finger foods like sandwiches, pastries, or chips and settle them into a picnic basket. A quick ride to the park will take you to the bicycle rental area, where the both of you can get a tandem bike, a two-seater for riding together, or separate ones for riding side by side. Scenic trails lined by rustling trees and the occasional roadside blossom make the ride a quiet enjoyment. If you’re near the sea, you might even catch the sunset. Find a clear patch of grass to lay your mat and open up your treasure chest of goodies, and enjoy your little feast. By then you might be able to catch a sprinkle of stars in the obsidian sky above, which is the kind of romantic scene right out of movies. Plus, it’s easy on the wallet. Kidding. But we merely state the truth.
For the music fans, a small band gracing their presence with a classical song or your partner’s favourite tune would be perfect. A room could be booked away from prying eyes, where the your violin or singing quartet could saunter in and play before your partners surprised eyes. As long as there’s elbow room, you could also request for then to pop up in a diner while others look on enviously at the sweet sonnet.
For a deeper dive into romance, a high class meal at a classy restaurant will do the trick. Treat your partner like a prince or princess when your initial comment of ‘just bringing you to a cafe’ turns out to be an ‘atas’ location fit for royalty. Intricately designed dishes and flavourful premium selections will leave you and your partner munching in satisfaction, till the very last bit. Who doesn’t love food? A little antique wine wouldn’t hurt anyway too. To top it off, secretly send in a small bouquet of roses with the last dish. The look on your lover’s face as the waiter leaves with a smirk is one you’ll remember forever.
Although jealousy has little space in a relationship, a small serving of it can be healthy as it shows how much you want to be The One for your partner. Perhaps you’ve heard about the lady killer in the office who’s just a tad too flirty with your girl. Or you’ve heard countless complaints about that other chick that won’t stop boasting about her Louboutin shoes from her man. Time to up your game with a little announcement of her status. 99 roses make a huge bouquet, and it’s impossible for it to go unnoticed in an office setting among nosy colleagues. Be it in person or through a delivery, she will be nothing short of surprised when she receives the gigantic arrangement. Other girls will be singing praises of the lucky lady’s boyfriend while guys stare on at the territorial gift. Said lucky lady will be more than happy to show that her heart is already reserved.
A truly romantic gesture would be a candle lit, homemade dinner. It doesn’t have to be some Michelin Star worthy dish, as the fact that you bothered to make time for such an intimate setting. When your girlfriend or boyfriend comes home to your surprise, you’ll be in for a great night. After a leisurely meal with idle chat and murmurs of sweet nothings, you can lead him or her away from the table and smoothly point out the trail of luxurious scarlet petals. Leading from the living room, it curves into the bedroom where another group of scattered petals paint the clean sheets. Your night will go out with a bang for sure.
Else wise, you might find that your long relationship is already written in stone, and you’re more than ready to take the next step. There’s no better time to propose than Valentine’s Day! If you two have always wanted to make that great Europe tour, suggest taking a break from the hustle of city life and pack your bags. Besides the obvious Paris, there are other places to pop the question. A quaint countryside cottage would make an adorable engagement photo, and the seaside offers the violet and magenta painted sky as a backdrop. Friends who are in on the plan can hang fairy lights and prop up flower garlands in a park before you lead your partner to the location under the guide of a walk. When the time comes, ‘yes’ will already be on the tip of their tongue.
Date night on Valentine’s can be a memorable event, but the gesture is all the more touching. When you and your lover are caught up in a world of your own, there’s little that can break that intimate connection.
But you haven’t settled the question of what kind of flowers should go into the bunch, have you? Let’s see; roses, roses, or roses? Valentine’s doesn’t have to only be about roses. With a whole array of flowers blooming all over the world, there are plenty of flowers to choose for your bouquet. Though each kind of flower can represent different things, there is no changing the beauty they exude.
The language of love may have once been used to bring across certain romantic messages, but today, with elegant cards and photo captions doing the work, flowers need not be mere message carriers. The joy of simply receiving beautiful flowers is immense, and a simple bouquet can be a great way to express thoughtfulness. A well-arranged bouquet can also mimic the endless blossom of a garden. Great for brightening your day!
Different combinations of flower species can even induce different moods! As Valentine’s Day is all about the sweetness of gifts, certain kinds can go unnoticed. Fret not, for we can broaden your perspective of flowers!
Bold colours and large bloom mixed into a Valentine’s bouquet can give a playful aura. Think of it as a friendly jab or a joke for breaking the ice; such an arrangement is sure to lighten up the mood. Vibrant pinks, yellows and blues can be placed at varying heights to create the image of flowers bursting to meet you, like free spirits rising in excitement. Tulips, carnations and delphinium are some flowers that come in various colours which stand out, making them great choices for a whimsical bouquet.
For the introvert who loves the peace and quiet, there’s always the calm, soothing bouquet. Does your significant other need a little stress relief, or a quick break from their hectic lives? Cool colours in a posy mixed with ferns are easy on the eyes and might soothe the receiver. With commonly purple and blue coloured larkspur or hydrangea, it’s like looking into the depths of the sea of the vast, cloud speckled sky. The sapphire and violet of such calming apologies bouquets may even appease even the fiercest of fires! (Though you now know you shouldn’t spark such flames again.)
Blending hot colours together lights the bouquet up immediately. It’ll light the recipient’s face up as well, as this sort of sensual conveys a deep love. Vibrant lilies and berries can be arranged to create a picture of passion, putting in place an amorous aura. Your affection will be made clear in such fiery flowers, and the bouquet can still make an eye catching centerpiece!
Hot favourites would be the most romantic combinations of pastel pins and purples. Such soft colours make the bouquet look cuter, or sometimes, elegant. Classic roses are often used in these fairy-tale like bunches, but lilacs and hyacinths can be used as well. A touch of baby’s-breath completes the picturesque bouquet. Simply stunning.
Other charming gifts like smiley flower plushies and little bundles of artifical flowers are alternatives some look at. But let’s face it, you want to show how real your love is, and the best way is to present an artfully arranged bouquet, wrapped in dreamy paper and bound with silky ribbon. That’s how to display exactly how you feel: a gorgeous spray of fresh flowers.
A recipient’s personality and the occasion can play a huge part in determining the most suitable arrangement, which is why we try our best to please customers and their lovers with our versatile bouquets. With plenty of attractive bundles to choose from, 24Hrs City Florist will never fail to please you! For flower delivery anywhere within Singapore.