When designing and selecting a headstone, you will need to consider the shape and design of the stone, the materials from which it is made, the type of finish applied to it and anything else you might want to have depending on your available budget.
Headstone prices fluctuate a lot depending on the choices you make. Compare prices when you have shortlisted the funeral directors who seem best for you. It is also a good idea to discuss with the funeral director any headstone design that you choose. They will be able to offer useful advice and information about your options and will often have monumental stone services that they can guarantee and can put you in touch with. For more information on Granite Headstones, visit a site like Abbey Memorials Granite Headstones
How to choose a headstone design
Headstone designs can be separated into three broad categories – straight, flat and kerbed. Which you choose will usually depend on personal preference and budget.
The most traditional upright stones of usually stand around 45 inches and are supported by a thick concrete base.
Flat headstones are available in various sizes, styles and shapes and can have a gentle incline or be made to lie flat.
Kerbed stones feature a full-length design and usually lie on the grave, often used in combination with an upright headstone.
Remember: Some cemeteries and churchyards have very specific rules for which types of gravestone are allowed to be installed in a cemetery. Before you make a final decision, talk to the cemetery or the church to check that your choice also meets their needs.
What material should I use for a headstone?
When picking a design for a headstone, the most commonly chosen materials include marble, granite, limestone and bronze. They each come with their own unique benefits and drawbacks, and you should think carefully about what is most suitable for your situation.
Granite is a stone that is very flexible and adaptable resulting in a number of different colours and finishes and proven to last.
Marble often offers a fantastic finish but is not allowed in all the cemeteries due to lack of strength and longevity.
Limestone is a traditional stone that changes a lot over time but remains a very popular choice.
Bronze is very durable but not always possible and is one of the more expensive options.
How do I choose the finish for the headstone?
There are four main types of headstone finish – polished, part-polished, honed or eggshell, or pitched.
Polished – This method leaves a shiny and smooth finish that does not require maintenance and can look out of place in an old graveyard.
Part-Polished – Only part of the stone is highlighted in this manner such as inscriptions, with polished and different finishes applied to the entire stone.
Honed or eggshell – This is achieved by removing layers of paint to leave the stone smooth but not shiny.
Pitched – A rough finish which is more suited to an older churchyard that would fit in aesthetically with the existing headstones.