Friday, September 20, 2013

Mausoleum Choices for Families

Community mausoleums, commonly found in cemeteries throughout the US, are large buildings designed to provide above-ground entombment. Sharing the cost of the mausoleum with other people makes it more cost-effective than private mausoleums for many families. Other families choose a more private, though more expensive, mausoleum constructed or delivered to their family estate plot in the cemetery. They house one or more "crypts" which are designed to hold casketed remains. Following a casket entombment, the crypt is sealed, and a granite or marble front "door" is attached. The door is usually engraved or sandblasted with personal or religious components, as well as the family name, names of the deceased and birth and death dates.

Mausoleums come in several standard sizes and colors. They are available domestically and as imports from overseas. The cost for a mausoleum can go from a few thousand to hundreds of thousands of dollars depending upon the size, materials, statuary and other additions to the construction of the family estate. They can be single sized for only one enternment, side by side or stacked one on top of the other for companion crypts. Families not choosing a walk-in family estate type mausoleum, may ask for several crypts stacked two, three, or even four high in one large family granite mausoleum.

A mausoleum encloses a burial chamber either wholly above ground or within a burial vault below the granite. Modern mausolea may also act as columbaria (a type of mausoleum for cremated remains) with additional niches to hold cremation urns. There really are no limits if you choose to have your mausoleum custom manufactured. Many granite retailers can help you with this process, and often have catalogs of designs ready to ship to the cemetery for those on a tight budget for time.

For more information on mausoleum and family estate designs visit estates.html

Monday, September 9, 2013

Cremation Gardens

The first step in your cremation process is going to be to choose the urn that will hold your loved ones ashes. Crematories require that a suitable container be used to contain your loved one after the cremation process. The urn is then placed inside a columbarium or buried in the ground with a marker, cremation monument or pedestal to house and protect the urn itself.

A gathering of friends, family and/or clergy provides a meaningful personalized tribute, as well as support for the living. This is something that can also be ongoing (annually or several times a year) within the cremation garden setting. Close family may wish to come and remember the deceased throughout the year. Sitting areas, benches and landscaping should all be thoughtfully planned out and provide a safe, comfortable and private place to memorialize.

There are many options from which to choose when selecting a final resting place for your loved one’s urn, because cremation memorialization can take any number of forms. Many cemeteries have created areas specifically for lasting remembrance. Cremated remains may be permanently memorialized in a columbarium, ground-burial area or specially designed cremation garden.

A cremation garden provides a final resting place for your loved one’s cremated remains. It is a designated area of the cemetery that may vary from a simple urn garden to a more elaborate area featuring elegant landscapes, graceful water designs and stunning granite monuments. The space can provide a beautiful and comforting experience for the ones who are looking for comfort in the wake of their loss.

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Etched Granite Memorials

Laser etching is a wonderful way to have a pictured memory transferred to granite. Computer generated laser etchings provide remarkable details from original photos (copies are not recommended). They also give you the ability to enhance, crop, re-size or transform your pictures. Images are often morphed together to create a more personalized scene.

Hand etching dates back to the early 1900's and was done by hand using primative tools of the day.  Currently, artists utilize modern day techniques in the hand etching process. Hand etching is useful when creating scenes and designs where photos may not exist. It is also used to enhance laser etched designs; allowing the hand etcher to go back in and provide more detail and add color(s).

Black granite is the most recommended granite color for etching. The dark color will help show greater contrast and render a more detailed etching. Etchings can be a great way to enhance your memorial-by even adding small embellishments such as portraits, emblems, logos, pets and more. You can also have your etching colorized. Specially manufactured litho paint colors are designed for use with granite. Color etchings are hand painted, and treated as artwork, rather than just adding areas of flat color.

Color can last years on an outdoor monument, and can be touched up or repainted as needed. As paint wears, the black and white etching remains. Color fastness can vary due to weather conditions and location of the monument (for example, facing the afternoon sun every day can fade colors faster than being in the shade). Every hand etching is an individual work of art that is skillfully created by a master craftsman and should be protected as much as possible from the elements to maintain color intensity and etched details.

Imagine your cherished memories transformed into a unique and personal memorial. Each stone is individually crafted by an artist who works from your provided photos or digital images. If providing digital images, high resolution-300dpi files are recommended.

For more information on laser and hand etching granite memorials, please visit monuments.html