6 Considerations for Choosing Headstone Engravings

an engraved headstone

Choosing the engraving and/or inscription that will appear on a loved one’s headstone involves careful thought and consideration. There are many different styles of inscriptions and engravings, playing an important role in creating the look of the headstone and making it unique and remembering your loved one in a beautiful way.

Elements of a headstone engraving include the font or lettering, the type of engraving, the use of symbols or a photo, and the words selected. Choosing headstone engravings to memorialize a loved one can be overwhelming, but here are seven considerations to help make it easier.

1. Choose What Best Represents Your Loved One

The wording engraved on the headstone can reflect the personality of your loved one, share something important about them, or serve as a farewell message from the family. It could be a message your loved one wants to convey, or be a reminder for loved ones visiting the grave for years to come.

Think about whether you want the engraving to be as if it were being spoken by your loved one, a relative, or a friend, as well as if you want to speak directly to others or describe the deceased’s life.

You can also choose designs or images that showcase your loved one’s hobbies, talents, interests, or career. Or, for floral designs, choose your loved one’s favorite flower, or flowers that represent their children or family.

2. Keep it Simple and Unique

Typically, less is more because you’ll likely be limited to a few lines. When the engraving is simple, the overall look and feel of the headstone will be stronger.

Avoid trends and try to use your own words, or words that truly capture your loved one. Be inspired by other beautiful headstones or images you find online and find a style that really speaks to you and represents your loved one best. 

3. Know the Cemetery Regulations

Some cemeteries have regulations around what can and cannot be engraved on a headstone. For example, some may require a religious symbol on the memorial. Talk with your funeral home director or the cemetery directly to make sure any regulations are known and followed.

4. Consider the Cost

Estimating the cost of engravings can be difficult because of the different options you can choose from, and the different methods of charging. Factors can include numbers of letters, type of engraving, lettering material, use of paint, and adding additional symbols or photos.

Set a budget before talking to a monument provider, or work with them to understand what is and isn’t in your budget.

5. Ask for a Draft

You can ask your monument designer for a proof or draft of the headstone for your approval. Be sure to check the accuracy of dates, spelling, etc. You should feel comfortable and happy with the result, knowing it’s a beautiful way to memorialize your loved one for years to come.

Take your time choosing the wording and engraving, and never feel rushed to create or approve a design.

6. Work with the Experts

Tegeler Monument has been helping families choose and create headstones and memorials for more than 120 years. It can be overwhelming deciding what to put on your loved one’s memorial. That’s why we are here to offer suggestions and resources to help you make the best decision for your family.

If you need help choosing the perfect way to memorialize your loved one, call us at 410-944-0300. Fill out our online contact form, and we will be in touch with you soon.