Cremation keepsakes are sentimental items that hold more meaning than meets the eye. When saying goodbye feels impossible and the journey of grief feels insurmountable, cremation keepsakes are a way to keep the memory of those you love close to your heart. 

What Is Cremation?

Cremation and traditional burial are two popular ways to lay a remarkable loved one to rest. Cremation is a process that exposes the body to high temperatures, leaving behind a composition of ashes, carbon, and mineral fragments. 

Cremation is both cost-effective and environmentally friendly. This process also allows for greater flexibility when it comes to memorializing your loved one. You can hold ash-scattering ceremonies or memorial services with cremated remains, and your family can save small portions of the cremains to create meaningful cremation keepsakes. 

People often view cremation as a way of returning a remarkable loved one to the Earth. Ashes and mineral fragments can work to nurture the Earth and nurture new life. Cremation is a way of completing the circle of life, keeping your loved one’s memory alive. 

What Is a Cremation Keepsake?

Cremation keepsakes are items that contain small amounts of cremated ash or are composed of cremated ash. Cremation keepsakes leave room for creativity when choosing how to celebrate a loved one’s remarkable life. There are many different ways to incorporate your loved one’s ashes into a keepsake that represents their one-of-a-kind nature. 

What Are the Types of Cremation Keepsakes?

As cremation keepsakes grow in their popularity, the options are becoming increasingly more diverse. Let’s take a look at the many different cremation keepsake options. 

Keepsake Urn

Keepsake urns are different from traditional urns, mainly because of their size. Traditional urns hold the entirety of your loved one’s ashes, while keepsake urns only hold a portion. Keepsake urns are perfect for families who each want a portion of cremains to hold dear. 

Keepsake urns are also a thoughtful choice for families who have chosen a scattering ceremony for their loved one’s ashes but want to keep a small portion near. 

Keepsake urns do not typically look like traditional urns because they are much smaller. The variety of keepsake urns allows for an array of uses. These urns can be created to incorporate a candle, adding practical use to the urn. Keepsake urns can also be worn as jewelry.

Cremation Diamond

Cremation diamonds are a popular form of cremation keepsakes because of their beauty and longevity. Different from keepsake urns that house cremated remains inside, cremation diamonds are formed from your loved one’s cremains. 

This means the carbon from your beloved’s ashes is part of the chemical makeup of the diamond. There will never be another diamond in existence quite like this one, just as there will never be anyone quite like your lost loved one.

The formation of cremation diamonds requires only a small amount of ash. These diamonds can be worn as jewelry, so you can carry your loved one with you throughout your life. Keep your loved one close to your heart with a memorial necklace or always in view with a memorial ring. 

These diamonds can be personalized in cut, color, engraving, and setting. Eterneva memorial diamonds are a profoundly meaningful memorial for your loved one that provides opportunities to share their remarkable story.

Cremation Stained Glass 

Among the artistic creations made from ashes is the stained glass window. A form of cremation keepsake, stained glass is a way of representing the vibrancy of life through its display of color. There is a certain serenity when light shines through stained glass, as if your loved one is saying that they’re watching over you. 

Ashes are infused into stained glass to create unique patterns and artwork that serve as a memorial for your loved one. Turn ashes into a full-size window that can be placed in your home or a suncatcher. 

Cremation Glass Sculpture 

Creating glass sculptures from the ashes of loved ones is a unique way to commemorate the beauty of their life. This process works by mixing ashes with molten glass before it is blown to make a sculpture. Glass sculptures made from cremains are a one-of-a-kind way to keep your loved ones near. 

Burial Beads

Burial beads are another thoughtful way to honor those who have passed. This burial method is most popular in South Korea, but it can be practiced worldwide. Similar to glass sculptures, burial beads are small glass beads that contain the cremated remains of your beloved. 

Burial beads are known for their beauty and are often made in bright colors. The result of the bead-making process is typically a blue-green or pink color, depending on the process. 

The process for creating burial beads typically begins with exposing cremains to incredibly high temperatures. High levels of heat remove carbon from the ashes in order to create a white powder, similar to the beginning stages of a memorial diamond. 

Burial beads and many other cremation keepsakes are seen as eco-friendly burial methods because they do not require the act of embalming or the use of caskets. Unlike cremation diamonds, burial beads are not worn as jewelry. Instead, they are displayed in the family’s home in decorative bowls or containers. 

Plant a Tree

Planting a tree using the ashes of your loved one is a type of green burial method that results in a lifelong cremation keepsake and lasting tribute to those who have passed. 

Not only is planting a tree a way of loving the Earth, but it also creates a lasting monument to your loved one’s remarkable life. Growing and tending to a tree planted with your loved one’s remains provides an opportunity for family and friends to come together for a common purpose over many years. 

There are various companies that can help your family plant a tree in a way that encourages nutrients to mix well with ashes. This can be a challenging process to carry out on your own. However, it can result in breathtaking displays of life when you partner with companies that specialize in this burial method. 

Cremation Tattoos 

This cremation keepsake involves the use of cremated remains mixed into vials of tattoo ink used in a permanent design. Including ashes in your artwork can increase the sentimental value of a tattoo created to celebrate your loved one. Choosing a design or a quote that represents the life of your loved one is another way of honoring their impact for decades to come. 

Why Do People Create Cremation Keepsakes?

Holding cremated remains near to the heart can be a way to honor and celebrate loved ones who have passed for many years. Many people choose to create cremation keepsakes because they are eco-friendly and sentimental. 

Eco-Friendly Reasons

Many forms of cremation fall under the umbrella of green burial because they do not require the use of harmful chemicals that are involved in the embalming process. Families who plan to hold on to cremation keepsakes can forgo this aspect of the traditional burial process.

Opting for cremation allows for more avenues when it comes to choosing a loved one’s memorial, as well. Using cremated ash, burials and memorials can be tailored to your loved one’s preferences to best represent the incredible life they lived. 

Sentimental Reasons

Cremation keepsakes hold infinite value because they represent the life of a beloved family member or friend. Turning ashes into beautiful and unique keepsakes is a way to share their story for years to come. 


Cremation keepsakes are a unique tribute to the beauty of life. These keepsakes only require a small portion of ashes. Cremation keepsakes can either contain ashes, like keepsake urns that hold ashes inside or be formed from ashes, like cremation glass or memorial diamonds. 

Cremation keepsakes can be created from the ashes left after a scattering ceremony or memorial service. These keepsakes are sentimental representations of your family member that you can hold on to long after they have passed. They preserve the sweet memories and infinite impact that your beloved left behind. 


Ashes to Ashes and Into Trees | Sierra Club

Vase/Urn | History of Early American Landscape Design 

Cremation | A Greener Funeral