Choosing a headstone for a relative is an important task since it determines how cemetery visitors remember them and what your family thinks when they visit. However, headstones can sometimes seem impersonal, and like they say little about the person's rich life and personality. The three tips below help you to think of meaningful ideas to make a stone more personal.
Think About The Shape
You probably have a good idea of what a traditionally-shaped headstone is like, but many headstone providers and cemeteries do allow for other options. A uniquely-shaped headstone is a great way to help your loved one be remembered in inimitable style. Funeral Guide explains that the top of a headstone can be carved in a variety of styles: while a religious relative might have approved of an angel or cross, other relatives might like a heart, book or simply a decorative design. You could also go for a more elaborate, decorative design with vines and flowers. Finally, your tombstone could have a built-in place to put beautiful flowers, which are especially suitable for relatives who loved all things floral.
Consider A Favourite Quotes
When it comes to an inscription, think carefully about what your relative loved, and how you want them to be remembered. If they had a favourite poet or book, a famous quote might be a good idea. If they lived for their grandchildren, make a reference to that. If they were very religious, do they have a favourite quote from scripture, or is there a quote that reminds you of them? Wellness Keen offers a range of suggestions, from John Donne's dramatic "Death, Be Not Proud" to sweet, heartfelt messages. Think about your loved one, and a good idea is sure to present itself.
Choose A Beautiful Picture
Having a picture on a tombstone may not seem traditional, but as the Atlantic describes, laser pictures on headstones have been around since 1989, and are very popular in some cemeteries. One option is to go for a favourite picture of your loved one, allowing you to remember them clearly when you visit. However, this is not the only option, and there are many more subtle options. What if you had a laser-cut picture of a cross, tree, book or heart? For a nature-loving relative, a butterfly, bee or bird might be nice, too. Ask your headstone provider what options are available, and what they recommend.
Spend some time as a family thinking about what your relative would want, and then decide on a shape, picture, and inscription that really speaks to you, and that helps you to remember them in a personal way. Look for a headstone provider near you to get started.