Losing a loved one is one of life’s most challenging experiences. When faced with the passing of someone dear, decisions about their final resting place can be overwhelming.

For those who have chosen cremation, the question arises: What can I do with my loved one’s ashes?

At Hetherington Funerals, we understand the importance of finding meaningful ways to honour and remember those who have passed.

In this article, we’ll explore various options, providing guidance and creative ideas to help you make a decision that feels right for you and your family.

Cremation ashes can be honoured in diverse ways: scattering in nature, creating memorial jewellery or art, planting a living memorial, arranging water or aerial burials or opting for traditional interment. The choice should reflect personal significance and provide solace in remembrance.

The Emotional Significance of Ashes

We know that ashes hold a profound emotional significance for many people.

They represent the physical remains of a loved one and can serve as a tangible connection to the person who has passed away.

For some, having their loved one’s ashes close by brings comfort and solace during the grieving process.

For others, finding a meaningful way to honour the memory of their loved one through the disposition of their ashes is a way to celebrate their life and legacy.

Understanding Cremation Ashes

Before exploring the various options for the best place to spread ashes, it’s essential to understand what they are.

Cremation ashes, also known as cremains, are the bone fragments and residue left behind after a body has been cremated.

They are typically a fine, powdery substance with a light grey or white colour.

Cremation ashes are sterile and pose no health risk to handling them, making them versatile in terms of memorialisation options.

Legal Considerations and Permissions

Before proceeding with any plans for the disposition of cremation ashes, it’s crucial to be aware of any legal considerations and obtain the necessary permissions.

Please also note that, while cremation itself is a widely accepted practice, the scattering or interment of ashes may be subject to local regulations or restrictions.

Be sure to research the laws in your chosen area and obtain any required permits or permissions before proceeding.

Scattering Ashes: A Time-honoured Tradition

Scattering ashes is one of the most common ways to memorialise a loved one who has been cremated.

Whether in a meaningful location that held significance for the deceased or in a serene natural setting, scattering ashes can provide a sense of closure and connection to the earth.

Some popular options for scattering ashes include spreading ashes in the ocean, in a forest, or a beloved garden or park.

Again, please be sure to check local regulations and obtain any necessary permissions before scattering ashes in public or private spaces – certainly for specific places in the ocean.

Innovative Ideas for Ashes

In addition to traditional scattering, there are many innovative and creative ways to honour a loved one’s memory using their ashes.

Consider incorporating them into:

Keepsakes and Memorial Jewelry

Memorial jewellery offers a beautiful and personal way to keep your loved one close to your heart.

Cremation ashes can be infused into glass pendants, rings or other jewellery pieces, allowing you to carry a physical reminder of your loved one with you wherever you go.

Personalised engraving or incorporating birthstones or favourite colours can add an extra layer of meaning to these cherished keepsakes.

Incorporating Ashes in Art

For those with a creative spirit, incorporating cremation ashes into art pieces can be a meaningful way to honour a loved one’s memory.

Whether it’s mixing ashes into paint for a custom portrait, creating a memorial sculpture or crafting a mosaic or stained glass piece, the possibilities are endless.

Working with a local artist or artisan can help bring your vision to life and create a unique and lasting tribute to your loved one.

Planting a Living Memorial

Planting a tree or garden in memory of a loved one can provide a beautiful and enduring tribute.

Consider mixing your loved one’s ashes with soil or compost and planting a tree or flower garden in their honour.

Over time you will watch the tree grow and flourish. In so doing, it can serve as a living reminder of their presence in your life and the legacy they left behind.

Creating a Memorial Space at Home

Creating a dedicated memorial space in your home can provide a comforting place for reflection and remembrance.

Whether it’s a small altar with photos, candles and mementos or a peaceful garden corner with a memorial bench or plaque, having a designated space to honour your loved one can help keep their memory alive and provide a sense of comfort during difficult times.

Ashes to the Sea: Water Burials

For those with a connection to the ocean or a love of sailing, a water burial can be the best place to spread ashes as a fitting way to bid farewell to a loved one.

Whether it’s spreading ashes in the ocean, releasing them into a river or lake or placing them in a biodegradable urn designed for water burials, saying goodbye on the water can be a serene and symbolic way to honour the memory of your loved one.

Sending Ashes to the Skies

For a truly unique and memorable tribute, consider sending your loved one’s ashes into the skies.

Companies specialising in aerial ash scattering can arrange for a portion of the ashes to be released from a plane or hot air balloon, creating a breathtaking display of remembrance.

Whether it’s over a favourite landscape or during a special event such as a memorial service or anniversary, aerial ash scattering can provide a poignant and meaningful farewell.

Interment in a Columbarium or Burial

For those who prefer a more traditional approach, interment in a columbarium or burial plot can provide a sense of permanence and reverence.

Columbariums are structures designed to hold cremation urns, providing a dignified final resting place for your loved one’s ashes.

Burial plots offer another option for those who wish to have a physical location to visit and pay their respects.

Final Thoughts

Hopefully, now knowing some of the options for the final resting place of a loved one’s ashes is reassuring and enlightening. What to do is a deeply personal decision and there is no right or wrong way to honour the memory of a loved one.

Upon consideration, whether you choose to scatter the ashes in a meaningful location, incorporate them into art or jewellery or create a lasting memorial at home, the most important thing is to find a tribute that feels meaningful and authentic to you and your family.

At Hetherington Funerals, we can assist with cremations in Perth, and support you every step of the way as you navigate this journey of remembrance and healing.

When you speak with our funeral directors, your comfort is our main concern. We will listen closely to you and work with you to honour your loved one as you wish.