Custom Valentine's Day Gifts for Under $50

 Here's an example (and a price breakdown) below of something we've got up our sleeve. A fuzzy heart AND you and your partner's initials? Come on, what's cuter than that?

It doesn't stop there. Below are a few more samples of things you could do for that someone you love. How about framing the key to your first home together? Or a winky heart that perfectly captures how you feel about them? At Foursided, we've got a plethora of fun Valentine's cards, dishes, keychains, and pins for you to find that perfect embellishment. The ideas are endless - and we can help you bring them to life. 

So, what are you waiting for?

States in Love: The Ultimate Valentines Gift

Have you ever been inside one of our stores and seen this sign and thought to yourself, "I wonder what that is?" Our States in Love is the perfect way to say "I love you," the sweetest way to say "I miss you," and the most memorable way to say "look how far we've come."

But States in Love aren't just for lovers. They're for families, friends, and an easy way to highlight someone's path of life. Each piece is custom made with however many states you choose, hearts or no hearts, and a dotted line starting and ending just where you want them to.

Curious about how they're made? We caught up with one of our best States in Love artists, Melanie, to show us how it's done. The love that she puts into each custom piece is infectious. 

The first step is to get a good feel for the composition of the piece, or where each state is going to live inside the frame. This particular customer wanted Minnesota on the left side and Illinois on the right. 

Once the pieces are in their right place, they're floated about a quarter of an inch off the mat. How, you ask? Well, I can't tell you that. That's a Foursided secret that we're not quite ready to share. Let's just say that each piece looks as if its actually floating. 

And then she gets to work on one of the most intricate parts of the piece: the dotted line. This is where each specific artist gets to make the piece entirely personal for you. After all, no two States in Love are ever the same. You're holding something that was made entirely for you and the person on the other side of that long dotted line. Once everything is dry, it all goes into a beautiful white frame and is ready to be gifted. 

There's something about seeing these behind a piece of glass that really brings about a wide range of emotions. Behind that frame, we see that lover, that friend, or that family member suddenly feel much closer - not only geographically, but in our hearts. 

Matting Matters

We're actually DROOLING over this incredible mat job that Todd whipped out on this one. It's making us feel all the Chicago feels while we ask ourselves, "HOW did he do that?" It's all about the layering of the matting. This particular project was a piece of music that was written here in Chicago, and the customer wanted the Chicago flag carved into the matting. We were up for the challenge!

The white mats are cut at a bevel, or an angle, to give them more of a layered 3D effect. The blue and red matting are layered underneath to provide the pops of color behind the cut-outs. 

Once the edges are trimmed up and looking spiffy, this guy is ready to go into a frame. We thought a white frame would look best, so all of the focus could go to what's inside of it. 

When I asked Todd how he pulled this off, this is what he had to say:
"Foursided does not use a computer to cut its mats. They are still done the old fashioned way…by hand. We draw out a design- we use Xacto knives- we sweat over our creative designs for them to be the best they can be. We try, we fail and the we do it again until it works. Foursided vows to stave off as long as possible the invasive creativity killing use of robot mat cutters that the majority of other frame shops use. Humans still cut better mats."

Couldn't you just DIE? Like I said, we're obsessed. There's some true framing craftsmanship going on at Foursided!