Embrace Valentine’s Day— with a twist.
Amour, whether you’re single or not, is worth celebrating. Since love is the cornerstone of more than just romantic relationships, why not take this time of year and celebrate Galentine’s Day?
This unofficial holiday is truly as sweet as it sounds. Conceptualized by character Leslie Knope of the popular television show Parks and Recreation, the celebration is explained by Amy Poehler (aka Knope). “Every February 13, my lady friends and I leave our husbands and our boyfriends at home, and we just come and kick it breakfast style,” Knope says in the episode. “Ladies celebrating ladies.”
Whether you’re bonding over a spa night, gearing up to watch some rom coms or putting on a fantastic brunch like Knope and her crew, there is truly no wrong way to celebrate. Galentine’s Day is simply about gathering with your closest gal pals or female family members to embrace each other’s presence.
While we realize that the main ingredient in any successful gathering is the guests, we also know that success also rests in the décor and food options. We spoke with area lifestyle blogger Rana Monet about ways to plan a memorable Galentine’s Day celebration.
Food is the focal point for any occasion. Start with a potluck-style spread that incorporates anything from charcuterie boards (sweet or savory) and dips to inspired salads and entrees. To ensure no two dishes are the same, Monet recommends creating a spreadsheet to keep track of what items are being brought to the event. Also, provide a resource for those with any dietary restrictions.
If potluck style isn’t for you, create a tea party-inspired spread, equipped with a variety of pastries and cupcakes from a local bakery and fresh seasonal fruits. Top off the menu with a signature cocktail. Think: strawberry Bellini or cosmopolitan for a flirty, festive touch.
Decorations can embrace the classic heartfelt red and bubblegum pink shades, or take Galentine’s Day quite literally and opt for an utterly girly route with a gradient of pink tones. If Valentine’s Day really isn’t your thing, Monet suggests taking the anti-approach with Gothic elements and all black décor.
Once the color theme is decided, gathering décor and dining pieces is the next step. Considering the uniqueness of this event, Monet says the best way to approach décor is to find pieces that are multipurpose, so you don’t sacrifice too much from a cost perspective. She also suggests looking for vintage pieces, including funky vases, lacy linens and festive dishware. Remember: Everything doesn’t have match to make it wonderful. Just be sure items have a common thread (color, pattern, texture, etc.). “It makes it feel more special than your standard themed paper plates,” Monet says.
Tablescapes are a key factor in showcasing your theme. “I focus on place settings and the decorations to set the tone for the event,” Monet says. When dressing the table, she utilizes a linen tablecloth, unique dishware, floral arrangements and candles to create a chic and inviting experience.
When considering candles, it’s worth noting that they are wonderful sources of ambient light, can add visual interest through various heights and can serve as an easy way to invite the color scheme to the table.
Activities can encourage individuals to interact with one another and create a festive vibe. Get crafty and create a photo booth backdrop, decorated with colorful streamers, balloons and garland. Include different props like boas, funky eyeglasses and snazzy hats to spice up the photos. Organize a card and gift exchange, similar to Secret Santa, where guests are randomly assigned one another to anonymously give a gift at the party. (You could even plan a Yankee Swap with silly, self-care or other gift themes.)
Check out these vendors to source some of your Galentine’s Day items.
Wuollet Bakery, 795 E. Lake St., Wayzata; 952.473.8621; wuollet.com
yum! Kitchen and Bakery, 6001 Shady Oak Road, Minnetonka; 952.933.6001; yumkitchen.com
Decorations and Party Favors
Festivities, 10701 Red Circle Drive, Minnetonka; 763.682.4846; festivitiesmn.com
Party Safari, 1159 Wayzata Blvd. E., Wayzata; 952.476.0176
- 8 oz. strawberries
- 2 tsp. sugar
- 6 oz. prosecco
Blend the strawberries until they are smooth. Make sure that the strawberries are ripe but not overripe. This will give the best flavor. Strain the strawberries through a fine sieve or cheesecloth. Divide the strawberry puree between two glasses, filling up to a little under halfway. Slowly top the glass with prosecco, and gently stir.
Tonka Bottle Shop, 17616 Minnetonka Blvd., Minnetonka; 952.473.5469; tonkabottleshop.com
- 4 oz. fresh lemon juice
- 4 oz. Grand Marnier
- 7 oz. vodka (I use Tito’s.)
- 7 oz. cranberry juice
About 20 minutes before preparing, lightly rinse four glasses with water, and place them in the freezer. If you have a cocktail shaker, add ice, and shake the ingredients. If using a pitcher, stir the ingredients for about one minute. Remove the glasses from the freezer, and pour in the mixture.
Haskell’s, 12900 Wayzata, Blvd., Minnetonka; 952.544.4456; haskells.com
A special thank you to the following people and businesses for supplying their time, expertise, supplies and location.