TODAY   |  February 05, 2010

Creating Valentine’s romance at home

Colin Cowie, party planner to the stars, shows TODAY’s Natalie Morales decorating ideas for Valentine’s Day.

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This content comes from Closed Captioning that was broadcast along with this program.

>>> mood at home.

>>> this morning on "today's home," staying in for valentine's day. whether you're celebrating with your honey, having an intimate dinner with friends or brunch for the kids, lifestyle expert colin cowie has some tabletop tips to spice up your home. colin, good morning.

>> good morning, natalie. how are you?

>> i'm doing great. so, we don't have to spend a lot of money and it really is more intimate, more personal if you do something at home, right?

>> instead of going to a restaurant, this is a great way to entertain at home. instead of sitting at the dinner table, think out of the box . so, i found these great tv trays.

>> these are great.

>> it's kind of fun to relax in front of the sofa, in front of the fireplace to keep it hot --

>> sort of like a tv dinner , but romantic. this is dinner and a movie for the couples.

>> absolutely.

>> for your couples affair. now, who actually plans? i mean, i know a lot of times the guys get stuck with planning some elaborate dinner, but we're modern women. we should take charge, too, right?

>> i think there should be democracy with romance.

>> exactly.

>> so, i think you toss a coin. heads you win, tails you lose, and whoever starts this year, the other does it next year.

>> and i love this. you printed menus with our names on it.

>> yes, we keep it personal. we did a water color --

>> beautiful.

>> what we did on the place card itself. instead of using roses, which cost five times the cost --

>> you love carnations.

>> i love carnations, particularly to use them on their own.

>> and the more, the better, right? because it creates that big bunch.

>> black, red and white, simple to do.

>> great decor color scheme . now, we're not cooking, which is great.

>> these are all foods that you can buy. they're all wonderful. these are the three most popular aphrodisiacs. they kind of get us in the mood.

>> okay, colin.

>> and straight seafood to the table, no cooking required. oysters in the half shell, shrimp, wonderful lobster tail. these are things you're going to feed yourself with or feed one another with.

>> okay. and what movies are we going to watch?

>> three great classics. "casablanca," "the way we were" and 9 1/2 weeks."

>>> okay, let's move over to having dinner or cocktails with friends.

>> okay, so you have a couple couples here. the design is a wonderful graphic base. here we've used a scarf.

>> so, we're making this more fun than romantic.

>> more fun, more groovy. this is beautiful.

>> you can take your basic china. i found these plates at crate and barrel. they're $6.95 each. a little tint. these are beautiful.

>> beautiful, yeah.

>> also, you can see how we wrote the names on the little ribbons.

>> little ribbons.

>> to keep those nice and personalized.

>> great. what cocktails do we have here?

>> this is a champagne ruby. so, it's lemon juice , lime juice , a little bit of raspberry juice, champagne in the shaker, garnished with some raspberries, and we're good to go.

>> what a wonderful drink. that 's wonderful . and the candles on the table.

>> and some of this acrylic ice. this adds a little sparkle to the table. and of course, everybody looks glamorous and sexy in candlelight.

>> now, let's do valentine's day for families, because it's actually on the weekend. so, maybe you're thinking brunch with the kids.

>> this is wonderful brunch with the kids. so, we're going to make wonderful pancakes for them.

>> these are adorable. you made heart-shaped pancakes, too. very special.

>> lovely plates over here with the heart motif. we found these at pottery barn kids , place mats.

>> great.

>> all that we need.

>> i love this idea of, you know, using some of what you would top your pancakes with --

>> turn it into a pancake --

>> -- as a tray setting. beautiful.

>> and we have fruits and lolly pops for a.m. and p.m.

>> i'm feeling strangely amorous.

>> would you like some oysters?

>> i don't think i need them.

>> wow.

>> kids, you might want to avert your eyes.

>> she's not eating the pancakes. she's having the oysters.

>> colin cowie , thank you.

>>> coming up, ambush makeovers for some lucky women in our crowd.

>>> plus, actress jennie garth and your local news and weather. ................................ .............