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As most of the U.S. can attest, this winter has packed a wallop — and not just in the Northeast. Here at HGTV Headquarters in relatively balmy Knoxville, Tenn., we’re experiencing record low temperatures and plenty of ice and snow. Brrrr….!

Snowy Landscape

So, what do you do when life gives you snow? Make margaritas, of course!

Snow Day Margaritas Recipe
Truth be told, my mixologist skills are a bit rusty; thankfully margaritas are a snap — just four basic ingredients that you can take to the next level with add-ins to suit your taste.

Ready to turn freshly fallen snow into a taste of summer? Here’s the recipe:

Snow Day Margaritas
Serves 2

  • 2 cups sugar
  • 1 cup water
  • 2/3 cup citrus juice (orange, lime or lemon)
  • tequila
  • clean, fresh snow
  • citrus fruit, for garnish

1. Create a simple syrup by adding water and sugar to a small saucepan; bring to a boil. Stir until the sugar completely dissolves, then remove pot from heat.

2. Transfer simple syrup to a small bottle or pitcher and allow to cool. Add citrus juice and a second cup of water to thin the syrup a bit.

3. Fill glasses to the brim with fresh snow, add syrup mixture and a splash (or two!) of your favorite tequila. Garnish with a citrus wedge and enjoy!

We’d love to know: What’s your favorite snow day tradition or activity? Let us know in the comments below.

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Congratulations to this week’s winner, Rose!

Can you guess which island belongs in this kitchen?

Decorate This Space

Type A, B or C in the comments section, and we’ll reveal the answer tomorrow. One lucky winner will win a Honeywell HeatBud personal heater and MistMate Humidifier. You don’t have to guess correctly to win.

Choose A, B or C

You may only comment once to be considered, and you don’t have to purchase anything to win; a purchase will not increase your chances of winning. Odds depend on total number of entries. Void where prohibited by law. Only open to legal residents of 50 U.S., D.C. or Puerto Rico, and you must be at least 18 years of age to win. All entries (comments) must be entered between 10:00 a.m. ET on February 25, 2015 and 12:00 p.m. ET on February 26, 2015. Subject to full official rules. By leaving a comment on the blog, you acknowledge your acceptance to the Official Rules. ARV of prize: $55. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a HGTV, 9721 Sherrill Boulevard, Knoxville, TN 37932. 

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It’s true that all of us here at HGTV and Design Happens have a certain degree of love for pretty interiors. Working with a group of super-creative people is so fun, because we’re constantly inspired by each other’s individual styles and tastes when it comes to decorating. We thought we would throw back the curtain and give you a little peek inside our homes to get a glimpse of how we HGTV-ify our spaces.

Here’s the first round of show-and-tell. Our editors shared a photo of an object in our bedrooms that can tell you a lot about a person: our nightstands.

Shannon:

I’m prone to knocking things off my nightstand when I clumsily hit the snooze button each morning, so I keep it simple. I painted the small dish at a local pottery studio, and it’s great for corralling lotions and other bedside essentials. I’m very sensitive to light while I’m sleeping, so I always keep the mask handy. I had it custom made by Rue Violet because most sleep masks are a tad snug for me (and because they come in such cute patterns).

Blue geometric lamp on nightstand

All of Shannon’s must-haves for a good night’s sleep are easily reached.

Kayla:

Back in grade school, my parents bought me a bedroom suite. You know, the whole matching set – two dressers, nightstand, mirror, headboard. Well, I got half of the pieces up to my tiny loft and all of a sudden it looked like a furniture showroom. I immediately got out the chalk paint and went to town. My next little project: finding the perfect knobs.

Custom painted nightstand with white lamp

Kayla’s nightstand get an artistic upgrade with custom paint.

Go inside more rooms of Design Happens editors

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If you diligently entered the HGTV Dream Home 2015 Giveaway twice a day for your chance to win our Martha’s Vineyard getaway, you know that the entry period wrapped up last week. We’re keeping our fingers crossed that a Design Happens reader snags the grand prize, but even if you don’t win, you can still incorporate the home’s updated coastal style in your home. Inspired by the guest bedroom, we went shopping for products that offer nautical flair with a modern twist. Here’s our formula for recreating this look:

Copy the Nautical Style From HGTV Dream Home 2015's Guest Bedroom

1. RugsUSA / 2. CB2 / 3. Dot & Bo / 4. Crate and Barrel
/ 5. Wayfair / 6. Target / 7. Pottery Barn

OUR FORMULA: RECREATE THIS LOOK

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When we asked which color you loved for FebruaryTangerine or Flamingo — it was a close battle. Some of you loved tangerine’s vibrance and retro quality, like blog reader flowergirlcraft: “Tangerine….lets bring back the 60′s . Looks like retro is in,” she says.  But others were equally smitten with flamingo: “It’s a nice combination of orange and pink blended together that gives a bold statement, but it’s soft enough to stand on its own,” says blog reader Butterfly45. And some of you even thought they looked great together. (We agree…just look at this living room!)

Society Social Bar Cart in Pink and Orange Living Room

Image Courtesy Society Social

Here’s the final tally:

February 2015 Color of the Month - HGTV Design Happens

In honor of Tangerine’s win, here are some surprising new ways to use the color — for this month and beyond.

READ MORE

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After being iced indoors most of last week, all I can think about is being somewhere warm. No, HOT. I want sand between my toes and condensation on the glass of a tropical drink. Speaking of which, today is National Margarita Day! It may be frigid out, but I’m not passing up a frozen concoction (that helps me hang on).

Raspberry Margarita Recipe

Photo + Recipe Courtesy of Casa Noble Tequila

Raspberry Margarita
Serves 1

  • 1 1/2 ounces Casa Noble Crystal Tequila
  • 3/4 ounce raspberry simple syrup*
  • 1/2 ounce ginger liqueur
  • 1/2 ounce fresh lime juice
  • 1 tablespoon agave nectar
  • rosemary sprig, for garnish
  • black pepper

Combine tequila, lime juice, ginger liqueur, agave and simple syrup into a cocktail shaker, and shake well. Pour over ice into a Collins glass, and sprinkle fresh ground pepper on top. Garnish with a rosemary sprig.

*For the Raspberry Simple Syrup: Combine 1/4 pound of raspberries with 1/4 cup of sugar and bring to a boil. Strain and push through a fine sieve. Reserve.

More recipes to try:

How are you celebrating National Margarita Day? With an ice-cold margarita … indoors … sheltered from the snow? Or maybe you’ll be hanging from a hammock somewhere warm with a bevvy in hand? Tell us below!

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On this week’s episode of Ellen’s Design Challenge we watched as the four remaining contestants battled to create the reigning champ of sofas. And create, they did! Seeing the awesome finished products put me in the mood to build a couch of my own! But then I remembered I’m not a furniture designer and have no carpenter friends.

So I decided to do the next best thing: upholster. Below I’ve put together some easy DIY upholstering projects that any newbie (like me) could do with relative ease in a weekend or two. Yay! New furniture! (Sorta).

Design by Gaspar de Jesus | Ellen’s Furniture Design Challenge

See the other incredible designs from Episode 4 >>>

First, learn the basics.

Before starting your project, familiarize yourself with the language of upholstery. Batting? Welt chord? Huh? Learn the ins and outs of upholstery here >>>

The tools of the trade. 

Prepare like a Pro. 

Before tackling any DIY project, it is essential to prepare, prepare, prepare. To get your furniture ready for upholstery, strip away the old fabric and start over with a fresh, clean slate. Learn how strip your old furniture here >>>

How to Strip Furniture for Reupholstery - HGTV Design Happens

Upholster your little heart out! 

This arm chair upholstery project looks like fun! Next weekend’s project? I think yes. Learn how to reupholster your own arm chair here >>>

Blue and White Reupholstered Armchair

Reupholstering this bench looks pretty simple, too! Try it at home >>>

Reupholster a Run-Down Bench - HGTV Design Happens

Can’t sew? No problem! Learn how to make this gorgeous no-sew headboard >>> Quick tip: if you aren’t very good at working with wood, consider buying a pre-made wooden frame for this project.

Make Your Own Upholstered Headboard - HGTV Design Happens

I can’t wait to reupholster my old worn-out couch! Let me know what weekend upholstery projects you plan to tackle in the comments below.

Can’t get enough of Ellen’s Furniture Design Challenge? Don’t miss Episode 5 “From Trash to Treasure,” airing February 23rd at 9/8c.

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Is there anything more glorious than the weekend? Sure, all of us at HGTV write and blog about beautiful things, DIY projects and amazing makeovers all week long, but the weekend is when we take that inspiration home. We repaint that bargain estate sale table, find out how to really organize that junk drawer, try a new pancake recipe and (maybe) even try a project from our endless Pinterest boards.

That’s why we decided to share our to-do list with you. Every Friday, we’ll share a few easy projects we’re planning to tackle over the weekend, from cleaning hacks to simple crafts to gardening ideas to cocktail recipes. Then, we want to hear from you: If you try out these projects (or tackle some of your own) tag your photos #HGTVWeekend on Instagram and Twitter. We’ll share some of our favorite photos right here on Design Happens.

Here’s what’s on tap for this weekend:

Clean This: The Fridge
What’s lurking in the back of the refrigerator? Some expired olives or some spilled jelly, perhaps? Well, we’ve got you covered with some quick cleaning solutions that will keep it looking (and smelling) fresh.

Clean Out the Refrigerator the Easy Way With Tips From HGTV

Kitchen Design by Mark Williams

GET OUR FRIDGE-CLEANING TIPS + MORE WEEKEND PROJECTS

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Of all the major award shows, The Oscars broadcast is the only one I rearrange my calendar for, so you know what I’ll be doing this Sunday night. I’ve been a film fanatic since I was a kid, and I’d be lying if I said I didn’t want to see my own name in lights one day. But since my acting career has fallen behind my interest in home design, I guess I’ll just have to settle for incorporating the lights into my own home and hope that my dogs will make do as my adoring fans.

I’ve been drawn to marquee signs since I started seeing them pop up in interiors with the rustic trend, and I’m in love with designer Amy Lutz’s use of marquee letters to spell out “LOVE.” The placement of the letters is perfect — they illuminate both the patio and dining room of this Austin home, creating a fun, playful vibe.

Design by Amy Lutz

Here’s another great example from Blu Interiors, which used marquee letters to spell out “ATL” and honor the homeowner’s love for the city of Atlanta. The letters really work with the rustic, vintage vibe of the space.

Design by Blu Interiors

If spelling out “BETH” ends up being a little too obvious or gets vetoed by my husband, maybe I’ll opt for a symbol like the arrow designer Karen Wolf used in what has got to be the hippest nursery ever!

Design by Karen Wolf

What kind of marquee sign would you display in YOUR home, or do you already have one flashing? Let us know in the comments below.

Want more inspiration for your home? Head to the HGTV Photo Library.

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Hampers

There’s nothing in the world my dog loves more than lying in a pile of dirty laundry. Unfortunately, I’m not a dog, so mountains of dirty laundry only serve to gross me out, take up space and remind me what a bad housekeeper I am.

I’ve made it my mission to search far and wide for the most fab, stylish, chic hampers out there to help tame the dirty laundry monster that always seems to live right next to my bed, on my bathroom floor, and if I’m being really honest, on my closet floor, too.

1. Provence Laundry Hamper. Is this a bedside table? A side table? Spoiler alert: NO! It’s actually a hamper cleverly hidden inside a piece of furniture. #genius

2. Charcoal Felt Hamper. This hamper makes me think about neckties, dress shoes and Leonardo DiCaprio yelling “Act as if…!” from Wolf of Wall Street. It’s a pretty swank spot for your dirty socks.

3. Elephant Hamper. Sometimes if I’m having a bad day I’ll type “best friends elephants” into YouTube and spend 20 minutes smile-crying while watching sweet elephant videos. This hamper makes me smile the exact same way.

4. Aqua Herringbone Hamper. Bring a little cheer to the misery that is the spin cycle with this bright, bohemian-chic African basket, or store your snake/belly dancing supplies in it. Whatever works.

5. Round Commercial Hamper. This hamper captures the industrial-chic spirit with the ease of wheels. This would be particularly helpful if, like me, your laundry needs to be collected from all corners of your home.

6. Stainless/Leather Hamper. This is clearly the Rolls Royce of all hampers. If I owned one of these bad boys, I’d probably put it in the middle of my living room floor for everyone to see rather than hidden in a closet corner. It might be the most beautiful hamper I’ve ever seen in my life.

Which one suits your design style? Let us know in the comments.

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HGTV’s Rehab Addict is so…addictive! One reason why? Host Nicole Curtis’ extreme passion for restoring old homes to their original glory, without cutting corners or wasting materials. Whether you’re planning a vintage renovation of your own or are just a fan of the show, read on to learn five of Nicole’s tried and true design mantras.

“Only garbage goes in the dumpster.” – Nicole

Nicole saves EVERYTHING. When a new heating system was installed, this old radiator was repurposed for use as a bedroom shelf! Brilliant! By reusing and recycling, she saves thousands of dollars on her projects and maintains as much of the home’s original integrity as possible.

Check out more ways to reuse and recycle things in your home >>

4 More Design Rules From Nicole

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You guessed correctly if you chose option C. Designer Margie Grace placed a water feature, made from a big copper syrup kettle, to create a serene yet striking focal point in this formal-style garden.

Formal, Lush Garden

We randomly chose one person from the comments, and Darla W. is the winner of a $100 gift card from Zazzle.com. Congrats!

Check back next Wednesday to decorate a new space.

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One year I’m dressed up, sipping cocktails and crying during acceptance speeches, and the next year I’m eating popcorn in my PJs like, “Who is that? What are these movies?” In 2014 I was an avid moviegoer, so I can’t wait to see who goes home with that golden statuette in hand. If you ever needed an excuse for throwing a party (and dressing up!), the Oscars is it. Here are our essentials for ending award show season in style.

Oscar Night Party Ideas1. ModCloth 2. Amazon 3. Cocktail, HGTV 4. Decor, HGTV 5. Recipe, HGTV 6. DIY, HGTV

1. Wear This: Dancer’s Delight Dress. This LBD is perfect for holding champagne flutes and twirling for no reason. Plus, it’s the ideal outfit for judging all the designer ensembles strutting down the red carpet. Hey, if you can’t be there in Vera Wang, you might as well be the Fashion Police, amiright?

2. Listen to This: Guardians of the Galaxy Soundtrack. Star-Lord has incredible taste in music. If I were defending the universe, I’d probably keep some nice background tunes going, too. If you haven’t popped this mix in, it’s filled with the unique 1970s tracks that are featured throughout the film as part of the plot line. Good luck not dancing.

3. Sip This: Fizzy Lizzy Cocktail. Champagne is essential on Oscar night. The celebs will be drinking it, so you should, too. Transform your basic bottle of Champagne by mixing in homemade margarita mix. Rim the glass with raspberry sugar and drop in some raspberries. Pop! Fizz! Clink!

4. Decorate With This: Oscar Party Elements. Gold, glitter, tinsel, confetti and sparkle say “Hollywood Glamour.” We say, go glitter crazy.

5. Eat This: Feta, Mint & Watermelon Bites. Keep it simple. Fresh watermelon and feta appetizers flavored with red wine vinegar and mint pair well with your champagne cocktail. Plus, they look gorgeous, too.

6. Make This: DIY Glitter Nails. Who has time to hit the salon these days? (Maybe my priorities are all wrong. Lookin’ at you, Netflix.) Give your nails a chic, salon look without the cost by using materials you likely have in your craft drawer. Paint your nails with clear polish, and while they’re still wet, cover liberally with fine glitter. Once dry, shake off to remove any excess glitter, then apply a top coat of clear polish to seal in the glitter. Lastly, show off throughout the night.

More Oscar Inspo:

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As a midcentury modern design fan, I’ve always dreamed of traveling around the country with a vintage travel trailer in tow. Just picture sipping on a martini outside this stylish 1961 Holiday House trailer:

1961 Pink Holiday House Trailer on HGTV's Design Blog - Design Happens

1961 Pink Holiday House Trailer; Image Courtesy OldTrailer.com

And I’m not alone: Preserving, restoring and enjoying these pieces of history is a growing trend. One amazing place to see these beauties? The Vintage Travel Trailer Show, taking place February 21 and 22 as part of Palm Springs Modernism Week, will showcase 40+ midcentury “tin cans.” Can’t make it to California? Here are some inspiring vintage trailers perfect for Wednesday dreaming.

Adorable Vintage Trailers That Will Make You Want to Hit the Road Immediately

Image Courtesy Vintage Revivals

The Nugget: Mandi of Vintage Revivals completely transformed this tiny, run-down camp trailer, from the midcentury-inspired exterior pattern to the updated cabinetry to the yellow stovetop. See Every Detail Here >>

Vintage Camper Kitchen - See More Vintage Trailers at HGTV's Design Happens Blog

Image Courtesy Vintage Revivals

6 MORE MUST-SEE VINTAGE TRAILERS

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Congratulations to this week’s winner, Darla!

Can you guess which water feature belongs in this lush garden?

Decorate This Space

Type A, B or C in the comments section, and we’ll reveal the answer tomorrow. One lucky winner will win a $100 gift card from Zazzle.com. You don’t have to guess correctly for a chance to win.

Choose, A, B or C

You may only comment once to be considered, and you don’t have to purchase anything to win; a purchase will not increase your chances of winning. Odds depend on total number of entries. Void where prohibited by law. Only open to legal residents of 50 U.S., D.C. or Puerto Rico, and you must be at least 18 years of age to win. All entries (comments) must be entered between 10:00 a.m. ET on February 18, 2015 and 12:00 p.m. ET on February 19, 2015. Subject to full official rules. By leaving a comment on the blog, you acknowledge your acceptance to the Official Rules. ARV of prize: $80. Sponsor: Scripps Networks, LLC, d/b/a HGTV, 9721 Sherrill Boulevard, Knoxville, TN 37932.

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Happy Fat Tuesday, everyone! Today marks the last day of the Carnival season, but the party is just getting started. Parades have been flowing through the streets of New Orleans since early this month, and floats are still making their way through with trinkets and treats in tow. Today’s final night of celebrations will surely be filled with lots of beads, booze and King Cake. (Jealous!)

If you’re stuck, well, not in the Big Easy, then we have eight delicious ways to bring the taste of N’awlins to wherever you may be. Just grab some beads, mix up a hurricane and (mentally) head down South.

Cajun-Style Gumbalaya

Take a trip to New Orleans with this Cajun-inspired dish. It’s a cross between gumbo and spicy jambalaya that’s perfect for those who just can’t decide which Louisiana entree they want. Get the recipe >> 

Shrimp Gumbo

Shrimp Gumbo Recipe

This spicy Cajun gumbo gets most of its flavor from the dark roux and its thickness from the herb file. Onions, celery and green peppers, major ingredients in both Creole and Cajun cooking, add flavor and substance to the shrimp and sausage stew. Get the recipe from FoodNetwork.com >>

More Big Easy Bites

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As a longtime film fan and onetime film critic, there have been countless occasions when I’ve longed to inhabit the reality of an incredible film. Who hasn’t wanted to savor a recipe, product, perfume or outfit that brings you closer to the sensibility and spirit of an influential movie?

Who better to inaugurate Design Happens’ newest series, “Live That Film,” than a director who creates undeniably appealing, seductive visual worlds set-designed within an inch of their lives?

There’s no denying director Wes Anderson’s (The Royal Tenenbaums, Fantastic Mr. Fox) visual sensibility. His films are so eyeball-satisfyingly scrumptious and meticulously designed you want to crawl right into them and stroll around, maybe snatch an ashtray or some towels to take home with you to savor the visit.

The Grand Budapest Hotel Movie Poster

Photo courtesy of Fox Searchlight Pictures

Set at a dreamy make-believe resort in the Alps in the 1930s, The Grand Budapest Hotel is Anderson’s melancholy homage to a never-to-be-recaptured period of Old World manners and elegance (and classic movies) before the downers of World War II and Soviet Communism laid a major bummer on the world.

Nominated for nine Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Director and — of course — Production Design from the uber-talented Adam Stockhausen, The Grand Budapest Hotel is Anderson in prime form. Filled with elegant architecture and a general spirit of wackiness, the film is an experience you can bring home with you or recapture in a sojourn abroad. Check out these stylish elements that bring the Anderson world just a bit closer.

Luxury Hotels, Macarons + More

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I recently returned from a trip to Las Vegas for the 2015 Kitchen and Bath Industry Show (KBIS). As a newbie to both Design Happens (first post!) and homeownership (first house purchased last year!), I was doubly excited to check out the latest kitchen and bathroom products to hit the market. The sheer amount of beautiful fixtures and finishes on display was rather overwhelming, but a few particularly glitzy and colorful items caught my eye. (What can I say? I’m drawn to shiny things.) If you’re looking for an update with big impact for your kitchen or bath, consider these four striking ideas:

Dimensional Tile

Metallic Tile by Ann Sacks at KBIS 2015

Lux by Ann Sacks

Ann Sacks Tile at KBIS 2015

Left: Geode Gemstone by Ann Sacks; Right: Lux Relais by Ann Sacks

You know those people who have to touch every silky shirt or fluffy blanket while shopping? I’m one of those, which made it hard to tear myself away from the tile work on display at KBIS. While the colors were largely neutral – lots of grays, khakis and creams – the styles were anything but bland with tons of texture, intricate patterns and lustrous metallic finishes. Must. Touch. These looks would add instant drama to any kitchen or bath.

See More Statement-Making Kitchen + Bath Trends

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February is all about love. And what do we love here at Design Happens? Finding out what you, our dear readers, adore. That’s why we decided to ask for your help to choose our top hue again this month. This month’s contenders: Cheery tangerine vs. feminine flamingo.

HGTV Color of the Month February 2015

Option 1: Tangerine
HGTV editor Shannon (a Color of the Month newbie) wowed us with her pitch for bright, cheery tangerine. Her color inspiration? A bright orange La Cornue professional range spotted on her recent visit to the Kitchen and Bath Industry Show. (We’re kind of obsessed!) This bright, cheerful hue adds a juicy punch even in small doses, from the inside of a kitchen cabinet to a modern armchair.

Tangerine Midcentury Rocker

Option 2: Flamingo
We were equally smitten with Briana‘s pitch for flamingo pink. A slightly pinker take on coral, this Strawberry Ice-meets-guava shade feel fresh when used in home accessories, on the walls and in large-scale rugs. It’s also delicious…in a cookie or a fresh fruit smoothie.

HGTV Color of the Month - Flamingo

So, which hue is your favorite?

CAST YOUR VOTE NOW

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Guys sometimes get a bad wrap for buying Valentine’s Day gifts at the last-minute, but hey, ladies are procrastinators, too. (Read: me.) If you’re scrambling for the perfect gift, we’ve got you covered! Here are 5 thoughtful gifts you can make or buy just in time.

Last-Minute Valentine's Day Gifts for Guys

01. Whiskey Stones. Perfect for the scotch or bourbon enthusiast in your life, these rocks let him chill his drink without watering it down. Bonus points if you throw in rocks glasses or a bottle of his favorite brand.

02. “Attracted to You” Printable Card. Maybe your dude is lovably nerdy. Appeal to his punny nature with this scientific explanation for your magnetic attraction. Buy the design online, then print the template on cardstock.

03. Framed Album Covers. For the audiophile, look no further than these framed vinyl album covers. Search vintage store shelves for quirky or classic album covers, then frame in a basic black craft-store frame. Or, scan one of his favorites and print on cardstock.

04. Top Hat & Mustache Cufflinks. Does your guy love wearing vintage three piece suits? Is there a monocle on his dresser? These vintage-inspired cuff links are for him.

05. Breakfast Pizza. Okay, really, what guy wouldn’t love pizza for breakfast? Use store-bought or homemade pizza dough, then top with sauce and his favorite toppings and a sunny-side up egg. Done and done. See how Marianne makes her own.

Have a go-to last minute gift? Tell us in the comments below.

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