Shapes and Design
Before you make your decision on a gravestone we will show you a selection of styles and designs. All gravestones are bespoke and can be personalised however you see fit, with lettering, images and colours. Advice on all aspects is part of our service.
You may want to consider hand etching a picture or family emblem onto the gravestone. Images often represent the lifestyle or beliefs of the deceased. For example, if they were an avid music lover, a picture of a guitar may be suitable. Symbols such as roses, doves or a bible, are very common in commentaries. Ceramics can also be used if you’d like a photograph on the gravestone.
Different fonts can add character to a gravestone. The most popular option is a Roman font or one very similar. Highly stylised fonts such as Old English and elaborate ‘script’ like fonts may look good on paper but are often very unsuitable when cutting into stone. More simple italic style fonts are often used for verses, bible passages, poetry and quotes. The type of stone can also influence the appearance of the lettering. In most circumstances letters are carved into the stone and finished with gold leaf or painted with enamel, so it’s important to have a contrasting colour to ensure they stand out
Although the stone is a crucial part of the design, you may not be allowed a stone of your choice. Most council run cemeteries will allow virtually all natural stones, however Church of England run burial grounds are far more restrictive on materials e.g. polished materials and white marble are generally not allowed. Preferred materials in churchyards are unpolished, light and dark grey granites. In exposed areas, such as open hillsides, a softer stone may weather quicker. In these cases a hard stone such as granite is recommended. We will advise on local rules.
Gravestones can come in a wide variety of colours, the most common being black, red, blue, grey and white. As stated previously, cemeteries and churchyards may have their own material and colour requirements which we can advise on when we know the burial site.
Always take the allowable size and dimensions into account when you’re choosing your design. Don’t use an over-sized gravestone for small markers or try to have too much in a small space. If in doubt ask us. Designing a gravestone provides you with an opportunity to establish how the deceased is remembered. The design is the most important aspect of the process and is never a decision to be taken lightly.