Possibly one of the first thoughts when arranging a cremation is ‘what will we do with the ashes?’. With a traditional burial, the tombstone can be visited to pay respects, flowers can be brought or kept, and loved ones can partake in moments of reflection. With a cremation on the other hand, the decision of what to do with ashes takes time and is more complicated because options are more plentiful – the ashes can be kept at home or they can be scattered.
What to do with ashes
Being able to physically hold on to the ashes of a loved one, carries a lot of sentimental weight and possibly some satisfaction for the soul. As strange as it sounds, the ability to hold an urn can replicate a hug with your loved one. However, rather than keep a loved one’s ashes in the home, the deceased may have had specific wishes for what to do with them; and there are plenty of interesting things that can be done with ashes.
When deciding what to do there are both traditional as well as creative ways of scattering the ashes of a loved one. Wonderful and exciting ways to celebrate the life of a loved one can be done by travelling with their ashes around the world, scattering them at sea, or even creating jewellery from them. More options include:
Fireworks have to be number one on the list of most creative ways to scatter ashes. Used for times of celebrations it is fitting for this to be a way of celebrating the life of a deceased loved one, a way to unconventionally commemorate their life, accompanied with beautiful colours in the sky. The logistics of making this happen seem simple as they are strapped to the firework and make that bang in the sky even more spectacular. As a send-off this can be turned into a stunning affair and a memorable alternative to scattering ashes.
What can be classed as a more personalised way of scattering ashes, and something that would last much longer than fireworks is a cremation portrait. Almost an immortalisation of a loved one, the ashes can be mixed into the paint used to create a portrait of the deceased. This way when you look at the portrait you know that they are part of the artwork and feel their presence with you in the best and worst times of life after them.
Another variety of cremation art is the use of ashes in a tattoo. Getting a tattoo in memory of a loved one is fairly common, yet not all studios are able to incorporate the ashes into the ink used. There are however, a few studios in the UK who are able to mix ashes and ink together, in helping you create a lasting memory of your loved one.
To carry on the idea of cremation art is the idea of turning ashes into a vinyl record. A growing trend or desire for young adults is to get their ashes, compressed into a vinyl record for family and friends to hold on to and celebrate.
Jewellery holds an immense amount of sentimental value for so many people and it is becoming increasingly more popular to use ashes when making personalised jewellery. The type of unique physical connection that a piece of jewellery made from ashes can provide to grieving family and friends is unmatched. A specifically popular trend is turning the ashes into a memorial diamond.
A ceramic urn is a very common and a simple method to store ashes, yet, there are countless unique and beautiful ways to store a loved one’s ashes. For example, it is possible to have hand-blown glass urns, pebble-shaped urns, and papier maché eco-urns made. These can easily be displayed into one’s home as an ornament of your choosing.
Travel with them
If a loved one had a passion for travelling or they specified where they want their ashes to be spread, it can turn into a fun adventure, by travelling the world and scattering ashes. In a lot of cases, ashes can be scattered at sea, but if your loved one did not get the chance to visit a place on a wish-list, that would be a great place to lay them to rest.
Burying ashes in your garden or planting them as a tree
Simplistic and yet meaningful, by burying ashes in a garden and maybe growing flowers on top of them, creates a symbolised way of looking at the life cycle. Even if not flowers, many people are planting tree urns which are biodegradable and eventually become a part of the ecosystem.
Following up on the theme of tree planting, we wanted to conclude by reminding you that NEO Cremations is fully offsetting the carbon footprint emanating from its activities by planting trees with our tree planting charity partners for every cremation we perform We hope you found the above ideas interesting and would be glad to discuss any of those with you if you wished simply by calling one of our team members on 0808 196 2140.