5 Great Ways to Personalize a Funeral

Updated: Mar 3, 2021

Making a Unique Service

While a funeral is a sad event, it also gives family and friends a time and place to share memories, honor a life and remember their loved one. A personalized funeral can set the tone for a wonderful tribute to and celebration of the life lived. Here are a few ideas to get you started. Music We all know the typical piano music that is playing when you enter the funeral home. While it’s nice for the day to day atmosphere, it might not be everyone’s style. Maybe Dad was a huge classic rock fan, or Grandpa just could not get enough of Elvis Presley. Whatever it may be, ask your funeral director if they can create a special playlist to play during visitation hours. It is sure to be a nice surprise to everyone who walks into the funeral home and a great conversation starter among guests. Clothing When planning for a funeral, details like clothing might not seem all that important. Chances are, you’ll be much more concerned about what the deceased will be dressed in that what you’re going to wear. But why not use both to pay homage to their life. If the deceased loved the Yankees, send him off wearing his favorite baseball cap. Or honor her lifelong involvement in her sorority by making sure her letters and pin are over her heart. You could even encourage guests to participate, inviting them to wear the deceased’s favorite color or favorite type of clothing. There’s something to be said about a room full of people honoring someone in such a visible way. Memorial Displays The possibilities for memorial displays are almost endless. These displays could be photo collages, video memorial tributes or memorabilia displayed throughout the funeral home. Photos and items often tell a story that words cannot convey. They also serve as a conversation starter and may invoke forgotten memories. Food & Drink When we think about things we do when family gathers, sharing food comes to mind. Why not do the same at a funeral? Have a batch of Grandma’s chocolate cookies present to snack on. Get a favorite restaurant to cater a luncheon gathering after the funeral. You could even send the deceased off with a toast of their favorite drink! Food brings people together, and what better time to come together than in the throes of grief. Favors Remember when you left a birthday party when you were young, and you always got something to take home. That toy or item kept you remembering that party anytime you played with it. We could do the same practice at funerals. Instead of taking home just a prayer card, offer each guest a piece of the deceased’s favorite candy. If they were an avid gardener, send everyone away with a seed packet; or give out recipe cards of the family baker’s famous banana bread. This will be a physical reminder for your guests to have of the person they miss. Not all funerals have to be the same. In fact, because every person and every life is different, they shouldn’t be. By utilizing some of these ideas, you can be assured your loved one’s service will be as unique as them.


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