From holding your own outdoor cinema to throwing each other cookery classes, here's how you can make your lockdown romantic...
Dating during a lockdown is something few of us have experienced (or have prepared for). And yet here we are, entering into our third month of quarantine.
For couples living apart, dating is having to get creative, with a lot of effort going into sending each other letters and holding romantic Zoom dates. But for those who are on lockdown together, there are no excuses.
But how many different dates can you actually hold from your home? Don’t worry we’ve got you covered.
10 home date night ideas to survive lockdown
1. Outdoor cinema
This does require having a bit of outdoor space, but if you do, why not turn your patio into an outdoor cinema? Whether you have a projector that you can rig up, a laptop you can bring outside or a TV you can push against the window, you should have all the technical equipment you need. And as for the furnishings – deckchairs, bean bags, rugs and plenty of cushions are a must.
And what to watch? Lionsgate UK YouTube Channel, holding movie nights every Saturday where they live screen classic films, with recent viewings including La La Land, Eddie the Eagle and Bend it like Beckham.
2. Cookery class
The lockdown has turned a lot of us into chefs and bakers. In fact, sourcing flour is now probably harder than sourcing Glastonbury tickets. In order to have some quality time with your other half, why not bake or cook something together? Chefs across the world are holding tutorials on their social media accounts, and there has never been more time than right now to give it a try.
Our personal recommendation in terms of tutorials? Gordon Ramsay’s carbonara, Gizzi Erskine’s stuffed crust pizza and Jason Atherton’s chicken and chorizo casserole. Or alternatively, if you’re going for Instagrammable trends – Meghan Markle style banana bread and Swedish cinnamon buns all the way.
3. Have a picnic
A backyard picnic is one of the most romantic date night ideas out there, plus it’s the perfect way of making the most of the sunny weather. Or, alternatively, if you don’t have outdoor space, throw yourself an indoor picnic. For the full effect, you’ll need a picnic blanket to sit on and a hamper of homemade snacks. We’re talking sausage rolls, scotch eggs, sandwiches, and even a bottle of homemade lemonade, complete with jam jars as cups.
4. Candlelit dinner
You don’t have to go to a restaurant to have a candlelit dinner. You can also enjoy it from the confines of your own home. All you need is the kitchen or dining room to yourself, candles (essential) and dinner (even more essential). But while it sounds fancy and like a lot of work, it really doesn’t need to be, with a particularly romantic millennial trend being a ‘candlelit takeaway’.
As long as you get dressed up and have a couple of hours to yourselves to engage in a proper date, then you’re doing it properly.
5. Breakfast in bed
While this isn’t strictly a ‘date night’ idea, making an event out of breakfast in bed could be a fun date idea for a lazy morning. Breakfast in bed is one of the most luxurious aspects of a hotel stay and yet most of us never enjoy it at home. Treating your other half to breakfast in bed is maybe the most romantic gesture.
But which breakfast essentials do you need to achieve the perfect breakfast in bed? Coffee (obvs), tea and some orange juice for drinks. And for the food, Eggs Benedict/ Royale are always winners, as are pancakes and waffles.
6. In-house spa
It will probably be months before we enjoy a luxurious London facial again so why not train your other half to get good at giving at-home treatments. Have a romantic spa day. We’re talking manicures, pedicures, a luxurious bubble bath and follow our at-home tips from a top facialist to get your glow on.
If you’re even feeling daring, you could treat each other to hair cuts, but we wouldn’t judge you if you skipped that last one.
7. Celebrate Christmas early
This one is definitely divisive, but some couples across social media who rarely spend much of the holidays together have been recreating Christmas during the lockdown months to spend it as a couple. And we have to say, we kind of love it. It doesn’t have to be Christmas, you could celebrate any holiday, but while you can’t leave your house, why not give it a go?
Obviously obtaining a Christmas tree this time of the year is not only extremely difficult but probably breaking lockdown rules, so you may want to just stick with homemade gifts, homemade festive decor, festive films and whatever Christmassy food you can rustle up.
8. Massage night
‘Massage’ as a search term has been trending over the lockdown, with working at home from sofas and arm chairs giving a lot of us lower back pain. So while it could be months until we can book ourselves in for a hot stone treatment, a fun date night could be learning and practicing massage on each other. It’s fun (tick), it’s romantic (tick), you learn a new skill (tick) and you get a massage out of it (HUGE TICK).
9. Watch the sunset
During our busy commuter lives we often miss things as simple as sunsets, but for those of us who are quarantined for the foreseeable, this could be a great time to rediscover them. Grab your loved one, a couple of glasses of Sauvignon Blanc/ beers and wrap up warm. Then, whether it’s in your garden or in a nearby park, go and take in the sunset over a cold drink. Bliss.
10. Games night
Lockdown has meant non-stop Zoom couple quizzes and ‘fun’ charades evenings with distant relatives, but don’t let that put you off a game with just you and your loved one. It could make a fun lockdown date. Whether it’s snap, chess, scrabble, rummy or Guess Who, the possibilities are endless.
Disclaimer: If you’re both competitive people, remember you will still be isolating together afterwards so if it could turn sour, maybe this isn’t the one for you.
Send us any other home dating ideas at @MarieClaireUK.
Stay safe and happy home dating!