New and unique ideas for celebrating a life: Creating personalised memorial services

Published: 29/6/2023
 New and unique ideas for celebrating a life: Creating personalised memorial services
New and unique ideas for celebrating a life: Creating personalised memorial services

Planning a memorial or funeral requires utmost thought and consideration to honour the unique personality and spirit of your loved one amidst the challenging experience of loss.  

If your loved one didn't leave behind instructions or if you feel that a traditional funeral wouldn't suit their personality, there are numerous alternative ceremonies that can provide a more personalised and uplifting way to say goodbye.   

In this guide, we will explore various new and creative ideas to help you celebrate and memorialise the life of your special someone.

Choosing a memorial service: A celebration of life 

Traditional funerals often carry a sombre and solemn atmosphere, which can sometimes make the grieving process even more difficult for some. However, the loss of a loved one doesn't necessarily have to be solely about mourning and sadness. If you believe your loved one would have preferred a more celebratory approach, a memorial service might be the better choice.  

Compared to a traditional funeral, a memorial service offers greater flexibility in terms of timing and planning. Depending on your circumstances, you can choose to hold the memorial service anywhere from several days to several weeks or even months after the date of passing. 

Selecting the ideal venue for the memorial 

If you prefer a simple and low-key gathering, a funeral home can be an appropriate venue. They usually provide the necessary amenities, such as a podium, microphone, sound system and video projection. If a funeral home doesn't align with your preferences, there are numerous alternative locations to consider, like: local gardens, RSL clubs, parklands, theatres, private event spaces or even wineries.

Incorporating hobbies and passions into the memorial 

A popular trend in memorial services is incorporating the hobbies and passions of your loved one. This approach allows you to get creative with the venue, dress code, decorations and music, making the memorial truly unique. Consider choosing a theme based on their favourite colours, animals, sporting clubs, movies, sitcoms or collectibles. You could even organise a movie night and screen their favourite film at a local cinema. Begin the event with heartfelt tributes, open a candy bar and enjoy the movie together as a way to honour their memory.    

RELATED ARTICLE: What is a living wake? A guide to a meaningful celebration of life

Scattering ashes at the memorial

Scattering ashes is a common and meaningful way to memorialise someone. You can scatter the ashes at a location that holds sentimental value to your loved one, such as their home, parks, gardens, the beach or the countryside. For a more visually striking experience, consider drone scattering. Companies like Blue Horizon Memorials offer services to release ashes and even combine them with coloured powders to enhance the visual impact.  

For those who enjoyed watching New Year's fireworks, Ashes to Ashes, an Australian company, can incorporate your loved one's cremated remains into a breathtaking fireworks display, offering a truly memorable send-off.

Honouring through charitable contributions 

If your loved one was passionate about a particular cause or charity, creating an auction in their honour can be a beautiful way to support their chosen organisation. You can organise an auction either in person or online, featuring some of your loved ones possessions or requesting donations from local businesses. At the end of the auction, all proceeds can be donated to the charity in the name of your loved one, leaving a lasting impact in their memory.

 New and unique ideas for celebrating a life: Creating personalised memorial services
New and unique ideas for celebrating a life: Creating personalised memorial services

Creating a memorial that reflects their passion

If your loved one had a particular passion for trivia, games or sports, consider organising the memorial as a trivia night or sporting event. This interactive approach not only engages the attendees but also serves as a lasting tribute to their memory. You can design trivia questions around the deceased and their interests, making it a personalised and enjoyable experience for everyone involved. The event will create fond memories and celebrate the unique aspects of your loved one's life.

A memorial in their favourite holiday destination 

Consider arranging the memorial service in their favourite holiday destination. You can hold the service at their cherished restaurant, the beach they adored or even the campground they frequently visited. Incorporating the scattering of their ashes into this location will add a deeper connection and a sense of peace. This way, you can celebrate their life in a place that held great significance to them, allowing family and friends to reminisce about cherished moments spent together.

Butterfly release 

If you're looking for an eco-friendly option that also carries symbolic meaning, a butterfly release is a humbling choice. Butterflies are often associated with life and are considered to be connected to our souls in many cultures. Numerous Australian companies provide sustainable, hand-raised butterflies for release at events like memorials and funerals. This enchanting gesture can create a sense of peace and beauty as the butterflies take flight, representing the eternal spirit of your loved one.

RELATED ARTICLE: What is a celebration of life service?

Social media tribute

In today's digital age, technology offers unique ways to commemorate your loved one's life. With the help of social media platforms, you can record and share video tributes and photo slideshows that are commonly presented at memorials. This allows a wider audience to enjoy and celebrate the precious memories of the deceased, regardless of their location or the time. You can transform the deceased person's Facebook page into a memorial page, where eulogies and video tributes can be uploaded. It also provides a space for family and friends to share their own memories, creating a virtual gathering place for support and remembrance.

Artistic expressions

You can commission a local artist to paint a portrait or create a sculpture that captures your loved ones essence and spirit. This artwork can be displayed in your home or at a special location that holds significance for your loved one. Every time you gaze upon the artwork, it will serve as a tangible reminder of their presence and the impact they had on your life.

 New and unique ideas for celebrating a life: Creating personalised memorial services
New and unique ideas for celebrating a life: Creating personalised memorial services

Musical celebration 

If your loved one had a deep connection to music, consider organising a musical celebration in their honour. Gather musicians, singers and performers who are dear to them or who can interpret their favourite songs. This event can be held in a concert hall, park or in your own backyard. Allow the power of music to uplift the spirits of those in attendance and pay tribute to the joy and passion your loved one had for music.

Memory boxes

Creating memory boxes is a heartfelt way to preserve and honour the memory of your loved one. Encourage family and friends to contribute personal mementos, handwritten letters, photographs and cherished items that remind them of your loved one.  These items can be collected and stored in beautifully decorated memory boxes, which can be displayed in your home or shared among loved ones. Opening these boxes and reliving the memories they hold can provide comfort and keep your loved one's spirit alive.  

Whether it's selecting a themed venue, scattering ashes in meaningful locations, organising charitable events or embracing digital platforms for sharing memories, each choice can contribute to a personalised and meaningful memorial experience. The most important aspect is to celebrate the life and legacy of your loved one in a way that resonates with their spirit and brings comfort to those who mourn their loss.

Latest articles

Eulogy jokes: Balancing humour and respect at a funeral

Eulogy jokes, humorous anecdotes, one-liners and celebrity quotes about death incorporated into a...

Eulogy jokes: Balancing humour and respect at a funeral

19 Funeral songs from the 90s to honour your loved one

19 songs from the 1990s to compliment a heartfelt farewell. These funeral songs can bring back memories...

19 Funeral songs from the 90s to honour your loved one

How do I find a funeral notice in Victoria?

How to find a funeral notice in Victoria with My Tributes. A safe platform to honour and connect...

How do I find a funeral notice in Victoria?

Laurie Theresa Harbort

Readers of the Catholic Leader during the period 1955 to 1980 would fondly remember the Uncle John’s...

Laurie Theresa Harbort

Shane Warne’s dad Keith delivers emotional eulogy at state...

Shane Warne’s father Keith has delivered a moving eulogy before he was overcome with emotion when...

Shane Warne’s dad Keith delivers emotional eulogy at state memorial
View more articles