Day 2 of 12 Days of Christmas : 2 Turtle Doves & Jewellery

2 turtle doves vector for day 2Two turtle doves are, perhaps, the most understandable of the strange gifts the True Love sent to his beloved. They are the symbol of perfect romantic contentment, billing and cooing and utterly absorbed in each other.

Whether she needed ten more pairs after that first gift, of course, is debatable.

In Greek mythology, the turtle dove was sacred to Aphrodite. And Shakespeare depicted the turtle dove as the model of loyal devotion, united in life and even after.

So they love’d, as love in twain
Had the essence but in one:
Two distincts, division none;
Number there in love was slain. 

Day 2 BOOK

2 Turtle Doves cover for day 2Our day 2 title doesn’t stretch the powers of association at all: Two Turtle Doves by Alex Monroe. It’s not fiction but a memoir written by an internationally famous jewellery designer, previously unknown to me.

Even though I know little about jewellery and nothing at all about designing it, I am enormously interested in the creative process: in how the first thought and subsequent workings, both planned and instinctive, meld and develop. This book is really good on that. Indeed, it is subtitled A Memoir of Making Things.

We at Libertà have actually developed a creativity workshop for writers, having spent a good deal of time discussing it for our purposes. Indeed, i admit that I go back to our thoughts regularly, when Writing Block threatens.


Jewellery is a closed book to me. So I was intrigued and searched for Monroe’s work online. It is, indeed, delicate, intricate and some of it strangely haunting.

But, for me, equally pleasing, is his charming willingness to share the way he works and the oddities that life throws at him.

His website is a joy – and an excellent place to learn more about him and how he works.


Even if you’re not exercised by creativity or enchanted by the jewellery, this book still repays the reading. Its engagement with memory and, in particular, its evocation of an enchanted past is just wonderful.

Actually, it occurred to me that the free-wheeling Suffolk childhood Monroe describes could provide a first chapter of a PD James novel — innocence and curiosity in a Gothic mansion with an overgrown garden, with the countryside to explore and hostile schoolboys to challenge.

I can feel a story heaving over the horizon.