Use carnations and candy to make delightful gifts for loved ones this Valentine's Day.

Sweet Valentine Flower Arrangements

Everyone enjoys receiving flowers and candy, especially on Valentine's Day. So why not combine the two into one awesome arrangement? Spice up the holiday with cinnamon candies, leave your sweetheart a message in a bottle with candy hearts, or create a chocolate lover's delight. These displays may look like they came from a florist, but thanks to cheap and cheerful carnations and bulk candy, they're easy and inexpensive.

Fun With Fillers
This concept will work for any special occasion; just use different sweets. Try jelly beans at Easter, candy corn for Halloween arrangements, and peppermints during the winter holidays. Or use sugar cubes, coffee beans, gum balls, taffy, or candied almonds.

Make Your Own Candy Bouquet
Step 1: Fill a clear glass container halfway with candy.
Step 2: Use one of two methods to arrange flowers in vase. Place carnation stems in florist picks filled with water or in water-soaked florist foam. ( Tip: Tape together florist picks for smaller vases; for larger containers, cut a piece of florist foam to size before soaking it in water.) To ensure candy stays dry, place picks or foam in a plastic sandwich bag.
Step 3: Place carnations in candy-filled vase so the blooms rest a few inches above the vase. Add or take away candy to achieve the right arrangement height.
Step 4: Fill vase to the rim with candy, and tie on a ribbon.

"Sweet Valentine Flower Arrangements" is from the February 2005 issue of Southern Living.