Picture frames containing family members on a fireplace

Coffin keepsakes

There are many parts to organising a funeral, from choosing the flowers and music, to deciding on a coffin, but one of the more deeply personal things you can do to help make your loved one's funeral perfect is to choose a coffin keepsake.

A coffin keepsake is essentially an item of significance to your loved one that can be placed in the coffin with them.

Photographs have always been popular coffin keepsakes, with nearly half of us (49%) saying we would want a special picture to be placed with us. Other favourites include jewellery, letters and teddy bears, all items that can have a massive special significance to us, so much so that we can’t stand to be parted from them even in death.

But like with most aspects of a funeral, what you take with you in your coffin is not bound by any rules (well not many), and so you don’t have to stick to more conventional customs. This was highlighted in our 2019 Funeral Trends report where we revealed the most unusual items our Funeral Directors have been asked to place inside coffins.

Top 10 most unique requests

  • Chinese Takeaway
  • A false leg
  • A mobile phone
  • Wizard of Oz costume
  • A violin
  • A pair of clown shoes
  • A set of skis
  • Argos catalogue
  • A guitar
  • A pork pie

We’re fascinated by the way funerals are changing, and while placing items inside a coffin is not a new trend, the things people are choosing to take with them are definitely becoming more personal and unique to them, making them a real talking point for those left behind.

If you would like any help or advice about this or any other aspect of personalising your loved one’s funeral, please get in touch with your local funeral director.

The data from this article is based on the findings of our 2019 Funeral Trends report which was compiled of our business data from 2014 to date and insight from our funeral arrangers and directors in June & July 2019. We also worked with YouGov in July 2019 to conduct research among 4,000 British adults, and a re-run of questions from our Biggest Ever Survey by YouGov among 2,000 adults.

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