Ways to personalise a funeral service

A funeral service can play a substantial part in bringing closure to friends and family of a loved one, especially if they feel that a service has truly celebrated their life in the way their loved one would have wanted.

As we explored in our guide to the latest funeral trends many of the more traditional aspects of a funeral, such as wearing black and singing hymns, are beginning to change as more and more people choose their own ways to personalise their funerals.  This is not to say that there is anything wrong with a ‘traditional’ funeral but just that trends have changed in recent years.

Personal touches
Image10Funeral attendees have traditionally worn black to funerals, and although it is still the most common colour to wear to a funeral, funeral goers are increasingly being asked to wear brighter colours.  Ultimately you need to think about what your loved one would have liked and what you think is appropriate.

Coffins and methods of transport used can come in a wide variety of shapes, colours and sizes.  Coffins can be personalised with special motifs, made of environmentally friendly materials or in a loved one’s favourite colour.  A motor hearse is the most common type of transport used to take a loved one on their final journey, however, horse-drawn carriages, lorries, dormobiles and even motorbikes with purpose built side cars can be used to reflect the character and interests of the deceased.

Floral decorations can bring colour to a funeral and many families will choose imaginative displays such as flowers spelling the name of their loved one or shaped like a car or a football badge.  It is common for attendees to bring floral tributes but alternatively you could ask for a donation to a specific charity.

If your loved one was a music lover then choosing a song that meant something to them can be a nice tribute, or you could request their favourite hymn or a poem.  You might want to share a story about your loved one, talk about their character and invite others to do the same or alternatively ask a minister to deliver a reading.

Traditional burials would see mourners throw flowers or soil into the grave; however, you may wish to do something which is different but still symbolic, for example, releasing doves to represent peace and new life.

Whether through unique transportation choices and elaborate coffins or more delicate touches like poems or special flower arrangements – every human is different and there are many different ways in which a life can be remembered and celebrated.  Discuss with your funeral director what you would like to do to find out what options might be available and remember that you do not have to stick to a standard template.

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