Have a Romantic Valentine’s Day Picnic (for just $14)

I don’t think it’s any secret that I like to budget. For most people who may still be recovering from Christmas, valentine’s day may seem daunting. Prices tend to skyrocket around the heavily commercialized holiday. I’m not a holiday hater either – I’m just telling the truth. Ask any florist, due to demand, there will be a much higher markup on roses around this time. It’s all about supply and demand. While flowers are lovely, and my husband has never left me without them on this day, I would honestly be content with any gesture. As long as it is meaningful. We’ll be writing about some meaningful frugal valentines day ideas soon. But for now, we wanted to share this cute set up for a romantic valentine’s day picnic!

For literally years I have drooled over the indoor picnics on pinterest for Valentines day. Heck, I’ve been drooling over the outdoor picnics. You’re talking to a lady who has not one, but two picnic baskets. (Who may have used one of them once).

I wanted to put together something that anyone could do. For this romantic valentine’s day picnic, I chose to set it up indoors. This is simply because it’s February, so it’s still a little nippy in the evenings here. Plus other places I’m 90% sure snow still covers everything!

My husband has been incredibly patient with me. I mean, the stump I used is still sitting in the living room floor (#housewifeoftheyear). But I did actuallly have all of the stuff (except a few balloons) picked up the next morning.

He was wondering why I didn’t just set up an actual tent, wouldn’t that be easier? Well for all intensive purposes, yes. But not everyone is an avid (or lukewarm) outdoor enthusiast. I’m not going to make you invest in a tent you’ll never use again.

Instead, why not use things around your own home accented with decorations from the dollar store?

Have a Romantic Valentine’s Day Picnic (for just $14)

The Not So Beautiful Tent Construction

Okay so I’m not going to lie, getting an actual pitch in the tent – it was a pain in the butt. Basically the barebones are pretty simple. You just grab four chairs (I used the ones from our counter-top height table) and drape them with sheets.

I’m sure you have a set or two of spare sheets somewhere right?

They’re printed? Even better. You’ve nailed that boho look everyone is in love with. I happened to have some spare fabric laying around that was sheer so I draped that too for added color.

Now for the tent pitch, to do this I used a step stool and our indoor broom. I put the bristle end through the opening between the back and seat and rested it between the window sill and floor. Then I used the handle end to create the pitch.

Now yes, there are a million other ways to create tents, forts, etc. But this one doesn’t require you to actually string any rope. If you can, then by all means – do it. But I’m just saying, we didn’t have anything to attach it to. If I were doing this completely by myself (without the help of my husband) I definitely wouldn’t try to secure it this way. For fear that I would damage the house.

Picnic Essentials

Now you may have noticed, I didn’t include food in this post. If you’re having a really frugal valentine’s day, you’re probably cooking at home or getting fast food or pizza. Neither which is wrong.

If I came home and found my living room tented like this with a pizza underneath it I would honestly burst into tears. Circa me every present I’ve ever gotten (#adjoining foldable chairs, #anniversaryring #brandedbag) Because it is truly the thought that counts.

As far as the essentials you’ll need on any picnic there are a few things I recommend:

  • Ice Bucket/Chest to Keep Drinks Cool (Or for aesthetic purposes if you’re indoor)
  • Blanket and Pillows to Sit On
  • Something to Drink Out Of (If you don’t have flutes/wine glasses/etc. just grab some mason jars, I won’t judge), extra points if you make it fancier with affordable garnish (i.e. berries)

Cute $ Store Touches

I swear to you as I age my admiration for the dollar store has only grown. In the graphic below you can see the whole setup, I’ve explained a little more about each piece by number underneath.

1. Silk Rose Petals: In what world are rose petals not romantic? I mean seriously. How many trails of rose petals/beds covered in rose petals have you seen in popular culture before? That’s because there’s something special about them. These are from the dollar store. If you wanted some that were more realistic looking, here are the ones I used for my wedding.

Investment: $2 (2 bags of differently colored petals)

2. Love Sign: This really looks like something you might find at Target. I fell in love with it, and can’t really believe it was only a whole dollar.

Investment: $1

3. Red Pom Poms: You can make your own out of tissue paper. But take this from someone who has, these are just about a million times easier. I love the pops of color and texture they bring.

Investment: $1

4. Balloons: Balloons are for celebrations. All kinds of celebrations, big and small. I think diving into a pool of balloons or walking into a house that’s essentially a balloon ball pit is a fantasy for most people. Create that kind of vibe here!

Investment: $3 (3 bags of different fun balloons)

5. Candles: I got a plethora of candles. Long tapered ones (typical for v-day), smaller tea lights and taller pillar candles.

Investment: $4

6. Candle Holders: I had to get two candle holders for the long tapered ones.

Investment: $2

7. Antique(y) looking Silver Tray: Is this not the cutest thing? I’ll definitely be using it the next time we do breakfast in bed!

Investment: $1

This was a lot of fun to put together, didn’t take a ton of time and was super affordable!


Have you ever done an indoor valentine’s day picnic? How did it go?


Thanks for reading!


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