By Sally Turkovich Wright
Valentine’s Day is upon on us. Instead of doing the typical gifts of roses and chocolates, try something different this year for your significant other! Pittsburgh has some fun alternatives for gifts for your gal or guy.
For the gals:
An afternoon of pottery painting
3801 Penn Ave
Pittsburgh, PA 15201
Hours: Tues to Thurs 12 p.m. – 6 p.m.; Fri 12 p.m. – 9 p.m.; Sat 6 p.m. – 9 p.m.
Cost: Studio fee: $18 plus pottery charge ranging from $1-$200 depending on the ceramic piece you choose.
Kiln-N-Time in Lawrenceville is a cute boutique pottery studio where you can spend time painting a variety of ceramics like bowls, flowerpots, wine bottle holders and even lamps! The owner, Sandy, has a great eye for the art and is there to offer tips and suggestions. Any girl would love an afternoon being crafty with her significant other. Sandy encourages patrons to make the outing it an indoor urban picnic by taking a bottle of wine (yes, really!) and a picnic lunch while you paint. How about that for an alternative to an overpriced dinner in a crowded restaurant? Call for reservations ahead of time!
A Spa day
Anna Skin Care
5541 Walnut Street
Pittsburgh, PA 15232
Hours: Tues 10:30 a.m. – 6:30 p.m.; Wed 12:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.; Thursday 12:30 p.m. – 8 p.m.; Fri 10:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.; Sat 10 a.m. – 5 p.m.; all by appointment only
Voted best facial by Pittsburgh Magazine, Anna Skin Care in Shadyside is the perfect setting for a quiet day of pampering. Facials are customized for individual skin care needs and are done in a completely private environment. With facials ranging in price from $50 to $79, this spa day won’t break the bank. Body treatments, peels, acne treatments and microdermabrasions are on the menu as well to round out the service offerings. Radiant skin will glow much longer than a dozen roses will bloom!
For the guys:
Sweets for your sweetie
Vanilla Pastry Studio
6014 Penn Circle South
Pittsburgh, PA 15206
Hours: Tues to Fri 9 a.m. – 6 p.m.; Sat 9 a.m. – 4 p.m.; Sun 10 a.m. – 2 p.m.
The gals aren’t the only ones who love decadent desserts. Treat your man to a sweet surprise from Vanilla Pastry Studio in Penn Circle. The owner, April, delights in making out-of-the-ordinary pastries and her Chocolate Bacon cupcakes are one of a kind. She starts with a dark chocolate cake, adds in decedent dark chocolate frosting flavored with a little maple syrup and tops it all off with a candied piece of smoked bacon! What guy doesn’t love bacon? And at $25 a dozen, these sweet treats won’t break the budget. I used these cupcakes for my groom’s cake at my wedding and they were gone in a blink of the eye! Call ahead to order your dozen and surprise your man by giving HIM the gift of chocolate on Valentine’s Day.
The gift of heat
Pittsburgh Glass Center
5472 Penn Avenue
Pittsburgh, PA 15206
Hours: Tues to Thurs 10 a.m. – 7 p.m.; Fri to Sun 10 a.m. – 4 p.m.; see website for workshop schedule
Looking for a fun and hot activity for your guy? Look no further than a class at the Pittsburgh Glass Center in the Garfield neighborhood of Pittsburgh. Specializing in bringing the art of glass blowing to Pittsburghers, the Pittsburgh Glass Center offers a wide range of beginner classes in their studio to introduce your man to a brand new hobby. I suggest one of the two hour workshops for $85 where newbie artists can make a wide variety of blown-glass art like paperweights, fused glass mosaics, wine stoppers and picture frames. Flaming hot kilns and working with your hands is sure to spark some romance!
Sally Turkovich lives in Pittsburgh with her husband, Jason and German Shepherd, Zeus. By day she works as an eyewear stylist for an independent eye doctor. By night, she writes a twice-weekly column for Twoday Magazine. Catch up with her there at twodaymag.com.