Although it feels like the world is falling apart (ahem Brexit), one romantic Londoner is on a mission to inject a little bit of love into our cold, bleak Januarys.
The idea of sending letters at all, let alone love letters, feels like a nostalgic notion - an act reserved for the times of Byron and Shelley. The truth is, with technology at our fingertips, writing a physical letter or card doesn’t come entirely naturally to us anymore.
But research has shown that we really do appreciate the value of a handwritten note, with one survey stating that millennials actually cherish letters more than any other age group. In fact, according to handwritten note service Bond, 87% of us appreciate something handwritten over any other type of communication.
So, in the midst of political turmoil, we think it’s absolutely bloody lovely that a woman from South London has chosen to start a project that concentrates on shining a light on all the love left in the world, particularly that expressed in handwritten form.
Elspeth Merry, a 27-year-old music PR and journalist, is calling on the people to share their favourite written declarations of love, whether it be an old letter from a past flame or a new ode you’ve written to yourself.
The project, which is called Love Letters Anonymous, will collect heartfelt letters and re-purpose them in an anonymous zine in an attempt to “explore love and self acceptance in 2019.”
Merry has set up a page and submission form which explains the premise and her goal, reading: “I’m starting a project to share love in this hateful world. A reminder that romance isn’t dead. I want to collect love letters and share through an anonymous zine; whether it’s an old letter to or from a lover, a romantic what’s app, or sharing your feelings to someone you’re afraid to, even yourself.”
Those who want to contribute are invited to send in a picture of an actual love letter, or to make things a little easier, type it into the submission form.
Speaking to stylist.co.uk about what sparked her idea to bring back one of the romantic gestures of old, Merry said: “Love Letters Anonymous is a pocket of truth and unfiltered emotion in a world which is lacking human connection. I thought deep expressions of love now seemed rare. The very ritual of writing down your feelings for someone you love was more Shakespearean than millennial.
“But the more I spoke to peers the more I realised romance wasn’t dead. I visited the Barbican’s Modern Couples Exhibition and saw liberated artists expressing love through poetry and drawing. This sparked the idea of collecting love letters - whether on paper, email or iMessage, to explore love and self acceptance in 2019.”
So, whether the January blues are getting you down or you’re just extra excited about Valentine’s Day which is just around the corner, this is your chance to be part of a love revolution.
Visit the Love Letters Anonymous submission form here to enter your love letter and wait for updates on the zine’s creation.
Images: Getty / Elspeth Merry