When deciding how to lay an incredible loved one to rest, cremation is a thoughtful option that has recently grown in popularity because of its cost-effectiveness and eco-friendliness. 

While there is no wrong choice when deciding how to best honor a remarkable loved one who has passed away, cremation offers flexibility and time to families that traditional burial does not. 

Although traditional burial can be a poignant way to lay an incredible loved one to rest, cremation also provides a wider range of memorial options following end-of-life services. If you are researching ways to celebrate your incredible loved one, below you’ll find a few examples of how you can use cremation ashes to create a memorial as unique as your passed loved one.

Cremation Keepsakes

Cremation keepsakes are a heartfelt way to memorialize a loved one. Cremation keepsakes can include anything from jewelry to stained glass to small urns that contain small portions of your loved one’s ashes. 

Since these keepsakes contain such small amounts of ashes, it allows families to divide ashes so that each member of the family can keep their beloved close to their hearts.

Creating a cremation keepsake can keep the memory and legacy of lost loved one close and provide opportunities to share their incredible stories. These keepsakes often create beautiful tributes to the life of your beloved. 

Cremation keepsakes also provide a sense of closure to families, knowing their loved one’s memory will never fade and their impact and legacy will live on. 

Cremation keepsakes come in a variety of forms. This allows families to choose an option that would best represent their loved one’s life on Earth. Cremation keepsakes have also become more intricate over time, with companies offering diamonds or glass artwork made from cremated remains as enduring tokens of a life well-lived.

What Are Examples of Cremation Keepsakes?

As we consider how to best honor the life of our incredible loved ones, learning more about options for cremation keepsake can help us choose a memorial that reflects our unique loved ones and their legacies.

Cremation Diamonds

Cremation diamonds are a thoughtful and beautiful way to memorialize a loved one after their passing.

While some cremation jewelry holds portions of cremated remains in a small container inside the jewelry, cremation diamonds are crafted from the carbon in cremated remains. This means that the chemical makeup of each diamond uniquely represents the remarkable loved one whose ashes the diamond was made using. 

You can wear your cremation diamond every day to carry a token of the incredible relationship you shared with your loved one wherever you roam. Many choose this option because this process takes ashes, and makes something beautiful from them. 

It is a way to honor the life of your loved ones and display to the world that their light still shines, even after their time on earth has finished. 

Keepsake Urns

Keepsake urns differ from traditional urns because they store smaller amounts of ashes. 

Many families create keepsake urns so that multiple family members can keep their loved one’s memorial ashes near. Keepsake urns can be kept in the homes of family members and close friends to create an ever-present memorial for your loved one, or they can be turned into cremation jewelry and worn as a pendant.

Bio Urn

Bio urns decompose into the earth, combining cremated remains with the nutrients needed to grow a tree. Bio urns have become a popular form of cremation keepsakes because they are an eco-friendly way to create a memorial that can be visited for generations. 

Planting a tree from the ashes of your loved one creates a living memorial that your family can nurture, bringing life from death and making beautiful lasting memories. 

Ash-Scattering Ceremonies

Once the cremated remains of a loved one are returned to their families, surviving loved ones may choose to hold an ash-scattering ceremony

Ash-scattering ceremonies can be customized to honor our remarkable loved ones in a way that celebrates the lives they lead on Earth. 

The releasing of ashes itself can represent the act of letting go and moving forward after loss. Some believe that ash-scattering ceremonies return a person to nature or release their spirit into the afterlife. 

These ceremonies offer flexibility because they allow family members to hold the memorial somewhere meaningful to those who have passed. Ashes can be scattered into the wind or in water, or they can be buried. 

Together, let’s explore some thoughtful ash-scattering ceremonies, such as casting ceremonies, trenching ceremonies, and water ceremonies.

Casting Ceremony 

Families may choose to hold a ceremony where they cast their loved one’s ashes into the air, known as a casting ceremony. Casting ceremonies typically consist of an intimate group of family and friends sharing memories about their remarkable loved ones who have passed. 

Loved ones may pay music that reminds them of their loved one or read eulogies in their honor. The ceremony will conclude with someone or multiple people releasing their remarkable loved one’s ashes into the wind. 

This will be a time of saying goodbye and letting go. Families can have this ceremony at their home or a place that was meaningful to their loved one. 

Trenching Ceremony

Trenching ceremonies begin with family members digging a hole or a trench, then scattering their loved one’s ashes in the trench. Once the ceremony concludes, family and friends will ceremonially cover up the trench. 

Often, trenching ceremonies are performed at the home of the loved one who has passed or at a family member's home that was meaningful to their loved one. Families may choose to scatter ashes directly into a trench or bury ashes in a biodegradable urn. 

Families often choose to personalize trenching ceremonies by digging a trench in the shape of a heart with their loved one’s initials. 

Water Ceremony

Water ceremonies are another heartfelt form of ash-scattering. These ceremonies may include scattering ashes into a body of water or placing the ashes into a water-soluble urn and allowing the ashes to float away. 

Water ceremonies often take place at a meaningful location for your loved one and their family, like a beach or lake that their family frequently visited. Water ceremonies are sometimes held on a boat but can also be performed at the shore or from a dock. 

Water ceremonies often include a time of sharing memories or stories about your loved one. Their ashes will then be released into the water to float away. 


Cremation offers families the flexibility to memorialize their loved ones in a way that is unique to their remarkable personalities. There are countless ways to create a heartfelt memorial with ashes after cremation. 

Cremation keepsakes and ash-scattering ceremonies can be a thoughtful way to honor your incredible loved one’s impact and legacy. 

Families may choose to have cremation keepsakes made for family members or hold various forms of ash-scattering ceremonies. However your family chooses to memorize your loved one, it is important that it is representative of the life they lived and the beautiful impact they made. 


How to Plan a Spreading of Ashes Ceremony | Blue Ridge Funeral Service

Ashes to Ashes, Dust to ... Interactive Biodegradable Funerary Urns? : All Tech Considered | NPR 

The Cremation Process | Funeralwise