What is a personalised funeral? A personalised funeral is a funeral service or ceremony or memorial which reflects the person who has died as well as honours their life and loves, family and friends, their community and beliefs.
One of the first ways to personalise a funeral is through music choices. For example, playing certain songs from a band the person loved or music from a genre or era where they were most influenced in their life choices.
Additionally, with music, you are able to incorporate favourite artists, meaningful songs and bands within their playlists or collections. This can bring a certain tone and ambience into the ceremony or could just be a background element that is played in various moments of reflection within the service. This is why song selections are important when factoring in the music taste of your person and the creation of the ceremony.
Another way to personalise a funeral service is through the choice of funeral venue, location or space where it is held. Holding the service at a place your person cherished and loved or had a connection to, such as a club, by the water, or where they grew up can really add that personal touch. By doing this you are able to add another layer to the ceremony by showcasing a place they adored while additionally being able to say your last goodbye and connect further memories in that meaningful place. The overall concept of a personalised funeral is to connect with the elements that made your person happy and to reflect a part of their life and love through your ceremony and the rituals and rites connected to it.
Good memories associated with a specific place can be a good starting point for your funeral planning. Convenience should be considered as well as logistics, obviously. Perhaps the backyard of a family home or a location where the person or their family spent a lot of time. A place that was close to the heart of the person or was connected to their career or hobbies. Location is a significant factor and can form a wonderful backdrop to create a ceremony, making it even more special for those who attend and pay their respects.
Other elements worth considering might be a location they may have loved or spent most of their time, such as at a beach, park, property, home town, club or out in the garden or bushland. Finding a function centre, community hall or appropriately sized venue nearby can add that level of convenience as well. Having it take place at a sentimental location can be a nice touch and can add to that layer of reflection and reminiscence in the ceremony.
Each of these suggestions can elevate the personalisation of your funeral.
Memorial Table and Tributes
As part of the funeral service itself, personal items and memorabilia can be included around the coffin or in another focal point in the funeral venue, as a further way to personalise the funeral. You can utilise personal or significant items in so many ways to represent your person within in the ceremony space. From trophies and medals, photos and collectables to favourite items of clothing, favourite colours or flowers, artwork and symbols of passions and pursuits.
Personal items that were important and representative of your person can potentially be displayed and showcased in various ways. Exhibiting these personal items on or around the coffin, having elements related to this personal item included in the order of service, on chairs and or in clothing choices of the funeral staff or mourners, or displayed on a table or display.
Each of these items can act as a powerful reminder, as well as giving a chance for these mementoes to be shown and recognised in an individual and symbolic way.
Clothing choices are also a unique way in which attendees can participate. Favourite colours, flowers, patterns, accessories and styles loved by your person can be incorporated into the dress code of all attendees. For example, if your person was renowned for wearing a hat, supporting a team, wearing a brooch, a cardigan or even a Hawaiian shirt. Perhaps a signature colour or scent, each guest may choose to wear something or can be spritzed on arrival to represent that.
These suggestions are only the start. To find out more, talk to an experienced Picaluna Funeral Director for further inspiration.
By Esther Heffernan