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Sweet and sexy treats that say I love you
By Heather Toskan, Special to QMI Agency
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Sweets for your sweetie never go out of style (from $2.99 each, at Summerhill Market, summerhillmarket.com) (Supplied)

    It's the day to celebrate romance and pleasure, with memorable tokens of affection for your sweetheart.

    And while gifts of fancy lingerie, flowers, chocolates and other sweet treats are welcome, fragrance, jewelry and other stylish items also send loving notes.

    "Valentine's Day is an occasion when gifts can be unique, thoughtful and fun, all at once," says Diana Mazzuca of Swarovski Canada.

    Fun and unique gifts to suit every budget include whimsical heart shaped and patterned key chains, T-shirts, toiletries, wallets, bags and both costume and fine jewelry.

    "Valentine's Day is a lovely opportunity to express your affection. Gifts of jewelry have always been associated with this special day. A Tiffany Heart locket, for example, is something she will wear everyday as a daily reminder of the person who gave it to her," says Andrea Hopson, Canadian vice president of Tiffany & Co.


    Although classic gifts of gold heart lockets and multiple-carat diamond rings are sure to please, you can also find fun without breaking the bank by giving your sweetie moderately priced heart-shaped pendants, earrings, rings and chain bracelets.

    "The heart is the universal symbol of love; everyone recognizes it and relates to it. When you receive a heart-shaped piece of jewelry, you know that you are loved," says Caroline Neron, a Montreal-based designer of jewelry line Bijoux Caroline Neron.

    Sharing that loving feeling may also mean breaking out the frills.

    Lingerie and loungewear that get the nod from Cupid include whimsically patterned, cozy fleece pyjamas, super sexy bras, corsets, ruffled chemises and glamorous satin robes in retro-inspired silhouettes for the young and the young at heart.

    "Heart prints are trendy for the younger market while vintage-inspired ultra-feminine undergarments that take their cue from the starlets of the '40s and '50s are popular with women of all ages," says Raymonde Tranchemontagne, a senior designer with Wonder Bra in Montreal.

    Vintage-inspired underpinnings that scream "Old Hollywood" include full-coverage lace-trimmed bras, high-waisted briefs, corsets and garters.

    Gifts of fragrance continue to top the list of sweetly scented Valentine's Day treasures.

    "Like lingerie, fragrance is simultaneously the ultimate in affordable luxury and the perfect way to say I love you," says Sharleen Ernster Lazear, senior vice president of design at Victoria's Secret. "What can be more special than a gift she wears on bare skin? In just one spritz she feels instantly sexy and irresistible. And every time she wears the gifted fragrance, she'll think of who gave it to her."

    "Fragrance will always be one of the best Valentine's Day gifts because it shows that you care to give that special person something personal and unique," says Viviana Varela, a Toronto-based spokesperson for LVMH fragrances. "It's proven that scents can bring a flood of memories, so why not link a beautiful fragrance to a lovely person in your life?"

    This story was posted on Sun, February 12, 2012

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