There are many things we are never taught in school. One of them how to choose flowers. Remember back to the school prom. Choosing the right boutonnierre or corsage was one of the many hurdles to overcome in building the perfect night. What would the choice of flower mean? Would the color go with his/her outfit?
Magnify that quandary a factor of 100 and you start to approach the challenge of selecting funeral flowers. Choices now go beyond which flowers and what color, to style and size and meaning—so much wrapped up in the presentation and all done under a veil of grief. Flowers are a bright spot in a funeral, a bit of life, and should be selected with confidence.
For a full listing of funeral flower arrangements, I suggest you try this site, but let’s look at the standards. Many families choose a casket spray to be used both during the viewing or visitation and the funeral. A casket spray is a large flower arrangement placed on top of the casket and extending over half the casket or the full casket. As guests visually concentrate on the casket, a casket spray can have a great impact. It is usually selected and paid for by the immediate family.
Christians often choose a floral cross to represent their faith at a funeral. The cross can be small or large, placed inside or atop the casket, or braced on a stand.
Wreaths and free-standing sprays are commonly displayed at visitation and funerals. They are available in a range of flowers and colors. While white flowers are often chosen for funerals, any color flower is acceptable; and while there are traditional funeral arrangements, a wide range of flowers and arrangements are appropriate.
For friends and family wishing to send sympathy flowers, an arrangement in a vase or basket is as appropriate as a traditional funeral arrangement. A plant basket is similarly appropriate, and something that may last as an ongoing reminder of thoughtfulness.
Funeral flowers and sympathy flowers pull double or triple duty. Flowers for the funeral home viewing are transported to the chapel or church to decorate the funeral. After the funeral, flowers may be transported to the cemetery to stand at the final resting place. Arrangements are often taken home by the family after services, a reminder of others’ condolences and thoughtfulness as well as decoration for any post-funeral reception. Families may donate large floor arrangements to their churches.
Funeral and sympathy flowers are a loving expression, welcome in any style or color. Choices should be based on preferences and budget, not on perceived funeral limitations.