When we were designing our wedding invitation, we chose photographs that were – in part – milestones on the way to the wedding.
We’ve already talked about some of those milestones on this blog. The front cover is Cleaved, which sparked our first open declarations of love. Another photograph shows us smiling into each other’s eyes – part of a studio-based photography session with our wedding photographer Emma Solley.
One of the photographs shows our rings – both our wedding rings and Melinda’s engagement ring, complete with four diamonds and a stone called tourmaline, the colour (apparently) of my eyes.
And one more photograph shows my engagement band.
It’s a cuff that I wear around my wrist. I wear it because when we discussed what sort of rings we wanted it occurred to me that, while it is the custom for women to wear and proudly display an engagement ring, there is no equivalent for men. And I wanted to wear something that would announce and celebrate our intention to marry.
We found Penzance-based Emily Nixon at a crafts fair in Devon. She had bangles that looked precisely like what I wanted – the impression of raindrops spattering on water. They looked fluid and flowing. Just like the river in our River Song.
When we commissioned Emily, she was intrigued by making a cuff instead of a bangle. We commissioned her to create one made from silver, with large – but very subtle – splashes of gold.
The result is beautiful and I wear it all day, every day, taking it off only to show people who want to look more closely at what love looks like when a man wears it on his cuff.
While there is an accepted form for admiring Melinda’s engagement jewellery, an easy delight that comes from the expectation that the prospective bride will have a ring to display, people have to find their own way to react to my cuff. There is no formula and so the reaction varies from unbridled appreciation of its beauty to mild bewilderment mixed with an attempt to say the polite thing about how….what? Beautiful, manly, unusual, lovely, well-crafted it is?
I don’t mind what the reaction is, to be honest. I’m just pleased that this particular piece of engagement jewellery makes people think about what it means to wear it: that I am engaged fully and completely with the woman whom I love and whom I will marry; that I am engaged with a spirit and a soul with whom I want to share my being; that I am engaged with the deepest emotions that can be found in any human being.
All that in a piece of silver and gold, melded to the shape of my wrist.
All that, too, in the white gold, diamonds and tourmaline that sit so gracefully on Melinda’s hand.