5 free Valentine gifts that will make your partner happy

by Michaela

You don't need to spend a lot of money to find a great Valentine gift for your partner. Here are 5 simple and easy gift suggestions for those of you who are on a tight budget ...

5 free Valentine gifts that will make your partner happy

You don't need to spend a lot of money to find a great Valentine gift for your beloved. In fact, you don't need any money at all.

This is, of course, true for any other occasion as well but for Valentine's Day especially: It's your thought that counts! Might sound like a cliché but don't forget: Valentine's Day is a holiday about *you* and your relationship.

Ideally, your Valentine gift conveys a message like this one:

You're important to me. I really care about you. I know you well and I know what makes you happy. I want to let you know how much I love and appreciate having you in my life. 

Just as important: You know what does *not* make your partner happy.

Have a look at the "10 worst Valentine gifts" if you need a reminder of what better not to give to your favorite woman this Valentine's day … or to your favorite man.

Here are 5 simple and easy gift suggestions for those of you who are on a tight budget or don't believe in spending a lot of money on Valentine's day – for most gift ideas listed below you don't need any money at all:

1) Totally free but very valuable: Your words

You don't even necessarily have to put them in writing, just say them out loud. Let your wife, husband, boyfriend or girlfriend know how you feel and what you appreciate about them. No, it doesn't have to be sentimental or "mushy". Use Valentine's Day to give a sincere compliment or a heartfelt thankyou.

Very effective: Make your compliment be known to other people as well. For example, imagine telling your father in law: "I'm so glad to have David in my life. He's such a loving and considerate husband and such a devoted and patient father to our kids. Valentine's Day reminds me of how lucky I am to have him." Hopefully Dad will share what you told him with his son!

Try not to give a too general compliment ("you're a great girlfriend") but aim at being as specific as possible: "I love how honest and dependable you are. It makes me feel so safe with you." 

2) The classic: Write a love letter

Write a love letter: Yes, it's not an original gift but still a very popular one – at least with women!

A love letter doesn't have to be overly romantic or sappy either. Just share what you feel, in your own words.

If you don't know where to begin, use a quote (one that you like!) or the beginning of a love poem to find some inspiration. Then simply add your own words:

Dear … I love the first line of this poem – it reminds me of the day I met you ten years ago. Do you remember? Shakespeare is able to express it so well: …"

Here are 5 love quotes to help you get inspired (for love poems, please see below)

If I know what love is, it is because of you. - Hermann Hesse

I love you not only for what you are, but for what I am when I am with you. - Elizabeth Barrett Browning

Love is composed of a single soul inhabiting two bodies - Aristotle

One day you will ask me which is more important? My life or yours? I will say mine and you will walk away not knowing that you are my life. - Khalil Gibran

Soul-mates are people who bring out the best in you. They are not perfect but are always perfect for you. - Author Unknown


Make your love letter (or love message) more creative and memorable by the way you deliver it.
Even a simple and short "I love you" becomes much more original and "effective" if you:

  • write it on your bathroom mirror to surprise your partner
  • make it into a chalk message on the sidewalk in front of your beloved's home
  • let someone (a friend, a child, …) deliver it to your beloved's workplace
  • spell it out with candy (or noodles) on the breakfast table
  • send a telegram

Or maybe put your love letter as a message in a bottle?

Need some inspiration? - I love Katie's blog and her wonderfully creative way of getting the word out. (Make sure you have a look at her street art!)

Maybe you would like to download this cute and colorful free love letter for Valentine's Day: "Ten things I love about you"

5 free Valentine gifts that will make your partner happy
© M. Steininger

3) Write (or choose) a poem

Perhaps not the top choice of gift for men but many women love it: A romantic love poem.

Of course, the best option is: Write it yourself. (Don't know how? - Find some help here …)

Want to know a really easy way to write a poem? - In Germany, we use a form of poem called "elfchen". "Elfchen" is derived from the word "elf" for "eleven" because it is a poem of just eleven lines.

It's simple to write, even grade schoolers already learn how to do this in school. If you choose the right words and images, your "elfchen" can be as meaningful and beautiful as any longer or more elaborate poem.

Read more about the elfchen poem and how to write your own here or here.

Or read Adrian Henri's poem "Love is" – see link below. Maybe it helps you come up with your own personal list of "Love is …" sentences.

If you still don't think that there's a poet in you, simply "borrow" the words of someone else. Choose a poem that appeals to you and best expresses the feelings you have for your partner. Don't use a poem just because you think your partner will like it – make sure it has meaning for you, too. It's your message!

5 popular love poems you might like:

"Wild Nights" (Emily Dickinson)
"Valentine" (Wendy Cope)
"Love is" (Adrian Henri)
"I carry your heart with me" (E.E. Cummings)
"How do I love thee? Let me count the ways …" (Elizabeth Barrett Browning)

Completely free for you to download is this sweet Valentine poem by Eugene Fields (just print it and frame it and use it as a gift for your girlfriend or wife)

Please make sure to choose the correct version: One is addressed to a "brown-eyed sweetheart", the other to a "blue-eyed sweetheart".

Free Valentine poem

4) Compile your own CD of love songs

It's a classic gift but still widely popular: Choose songs that have a special meaning for your relationship and burn them on CD.

Music is a particularly effective way to affect emotions and stir memories – perfect for Valentine's Day!

For your CD, think of

  • songs that remind you of special days with your partner: your first date, your engagement party, your wedding, the day your first child was born, …
  • songs you like because they remind you of something you love about your partner: her eyes, his humor, the way she moves, …
  • songs you like because they express just what you feel for your partner
  • songs your partner loves


5) Create a photo gift

Photos make the best memories – choose one of yourself and your partner, one that is particularly relevant for your relationship, and have it framed. Don't forget to let your partner know why you did so: "I love this picture of the evening we spent in Paris on our honeymoon. Do you remember that fantastic sunset we saw – and the bird singing on a tree just next to our table? That photo reminds me of all the good times we shared and the fun we had together …"

You could even choose more pictures you like and create a photo album for your partner. Don't forget to add your own comments. There's no need to aim at being particularly lavish or romantic with your words, simple write why you chose a particular photo, why it belongs among your favorites and what special meaning it holds for you.

Create a new memory: If you have a friend or relative who knows how to use a camera, you could even arrange for a Valentine's Day photo shooting with your partner. Choose a spot that is beautiful or meaningful for the both of you, maybe surprise your guy or girl with a small gift (a nice scarf, a pair of gloves, a new hat, …) and let your friend take a few pictures of you and your partner.

Updated: 02/07/2012, Michaela
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