Materials To Consider When Picking Out A Memorial For A Recently Deceased Loved One

Shortly after the passing of a loved one, you'll want to take the time to find the right memorial to mark their grave site. You'll need to understand the options you have and the limitations of the cemetery. When starting your search for the perfect headstone, here are some of the items you'll need to know.

Get the Restrictions from the Cemetery

Every cemetery will have a number of rules concerning the types of memorials allowed. Make sure you understand these before starting your quest. The rules will specify such items as:

  • the materials allowed for a memorial
  • the size and shape allowed for a memorial
  • the accessories allowed on a memorial, such as vases or statues
  • the requirement for the memorial to be placed on a base

With these restrictions in hand, you can begin your search by deciding on the material you wish for the headstone.

Common Materials Used for Headstones

Marble - This is a traditional stone that can be carved into simple shapes and engraved with your inscriptions. Marble can be found in a variety of colors. It can be polished to a high gloss or left with its matte appearance.

Granite - This has become a favorite for headstones because of its durability. Marble can weather slightly over time, making the engraving difficult to read. Granite takes much longer to show signs of wear. Granite can be carved into the same shapes as marble and polished or left with its natural look.

Bronze - This is the metal traditionally used for headstones. It is poured into molds so it can be made into shapes that stone cannot. Bronze memorials are etched with inscriptions and are unaffected by the weather. Bronze must be polished periodically to prevent a patina from forming and dulling its shine.

Concrete - This material can also be poured into molds to create a variety of shapes. It can be tinted and textured to look like stone or wood.

Glass - This material can be tinted and then cast into a number of shapes. Inscriptions are permanently etched into the surface.

Mix and Match Materials

If allowed by the cemetery, you can mix a variety of materials together in one memorial. Some suggestions include:

  • a granite headstone with bronze flower vases set on the base
  • a marble headstone with concrete statuary attached to the base
  • a bronze memorial with a marble base and pillars at each side

Talk to a supplier, like, for more help.