In the past, funerals have largely been sombre occasions, where grieving loved ones gather to pay their respects for the recently deceased. People usually dress entirely in dark mourning colours, and the ceremonies are quite often religious, with hymns/songs and readings. These things are often considered elements of a traditional funeral. But tradition is not for everyone. Many people are now choosing to bypass things often associated with a traditional funeral, in favour of organising a more personalised, unique funeral in a loved one’s honour.
Here are a few unique funeral ideas that may inspire you, for your loved ones or if you are planning ahead for your own funeral:
Pick a Theme
Picking a theme for the funeral can help the mourners feel close to the departed by celebrating something that they were passionate about, a special achievement or even a much-loved place.
Organise a Firework Display
If you want the funeral to be a celebration of their life, a memorable fireworks display can be a great way to honour and remember a loved one. If you do choose a fireworks display, you should organise it through a qualified display team or follow all safety advice for lighting your own fireworks.
Many people are opting to bypass the tradition of mourners wearing black to a funeral and asking those attending to wear bright and colourful clothes instead. If your loved one had a favourite colour, you could even ask guests to dress in that colour. Alternatively, you could request mourners wear ‘anything but black’.
If you are going to ask mourners to dress different to the norm for funerals, you should give them as much notice as possible.
Traditionally, funeral flowers and floral tributes are usually white and simple, but you could also opt for brighter flowers to celebrate the life of a loved one in a unique way.
Hand out seeds
If you are planning to give your guests a small gift in remembrance of a loved one, then seeds are a unique idea.
You could hand on packets of seeds for mourners to take home and plant in their garden, accompanied by a personalised card. Planting seeds and watching a living thing grow in memory of a loved one is a special way to keep memories alive. There are companies online who make personalised seed cards for different occasions.
Forget-me-nots may be a nice choice; a small blue flower that are easy to grow and maintain and are a famous symbol of remembrance.
Ask guests to share a memory
There are lots of unique ways you can ask attendees to share their memories with your loved one.
You could start a memorial book and ask guests to write messages, share stories they experienced with the deceased or bring photos showing your loved one during different periods of their life. Similarly, you could create a memory tree and leave blank cards where people can leave thoughts and memories on and hang on the tree.
To highlight the achievements in someone’s life, you could display a memory table during the service or wake. This could include pictures, trophies, favourite items of clothing, a favourite mug or anything that people will fondly associate with the deceased.