If you’re experiencing a cremation for the first time, the concept of Cremation jewelry may be unfamiliar to you. This guide is for you and will inform you on the basics of cremation jewelry: a brief history and different options and styles to choose from.
Cremation Jewelry: A History
To put it simply, cremation jewelry is a handheld, mini memorial and tends to have a small compartment meant to hold a portion of someone’s ashes or even a memento such as a dried flower, lock of hair, or soil from the place of burial. GetUrns has a wide variety of cremation jewelry in the form of cremation pendants, cremation bracelet beads, and even matching earrings for a complete set.
While the practice of wearing a loved one’s remains may seem morbid, mourning jewelry has a long and rich history dating back to the 16th century revival of the latin phrase “Memento Mori” which directly translates to “remember death,” or “remember you will die.”
The expression was mostly used to refer to jewelry used to signify the occurrence of a death. These initial pieces consisted of brooches or necklaces that were more symbolic than functional: unequipped to hold anything while serving as a physical reminder of a lost loved one.
The presence of cremation jewelry made with a compartment for ashes didn’t actually come about until the Georgian era of 17th century England. These early pieces were wonderfully crafted - hand carved in the finest materials available, capable of holding ashes, dried flowers, and even intricately braided hair. Mourning became synonymous with fashion and people were extravagant in their expression of grief. This practice of showcasing one’s grief was normal and even encouraged as a coping mechanism to work through the experience of losing a loved one.
But Why Cremation Jewelry?
But why do people choose to put their loved ones inside a pendant or charm? Try to think about it this way; experiencing death is the hardest thing people deal with, yet they are still expected to return to their daily routines with relative ease. This is near impossible for some, their grief can overpower them and leave them unable to cope. Cremation necklace pendants, cremation beads, and cremation earrings are now a way for grieving people to hold their loved ones close at all times, making cremation jewelry ideal for those who are having a particularly tough time while mourning.
Modern cremation jewelry to hold ashes has evolved into a subtle form of mourning - a private thing for the bereaved rather than a recognized, outward display of grief. Cremation jewelry allows someone dealing with the loss of a loved one the chance to keep their loved one close by while also giving them the privacy of subtlety. The general public cannot tell the difference between cremation jewelry and a regular piece of jewelry, making cremation jewelry a great and private way to honor someone’s memory.
Another great characteristic of modern mourning jewelry is the ability to gift someone with these beautiful pieces. The inconspicuous nature of a cremation pendant or a cremation bracelet bead makes these products the perfect gift to a grieving friend.
Rather than purchase a cremation urn for someone, which is a serious responsibility, cremation jewelry is an ideal method of showing sympathy while not having to be too involved in the after death process. So for those of you who want to express your concern and assist but do not want to potentially get the urn wrong, cremation jewelry for ashes is a great alternative. If you are in charge of purchasing the urn however, please read our Cremation Urn Buying Guide to make the best informed decision.
What Can I Put Inside Cremation Jewelry?
Your cremation jewelry is versatile with regards to what you can put in it, although the opening is very small. If your loved one was cremated, you can place just a pinch of ashes on the inside. Other ideas for filling it include a small pinch of dirt from the spot where they were buried, a small lock of hair, or sand from their favorite beach. You can select what is most meaningful for you, although most people elect to use a pinch of cremated ashes.
How To Fill Cremation Jewelry?
Most cremation jewelry to hold ashes conveniently comes with a filling kit, which may include: a microfiber cloth for cleaning, a spoon/spatula unit for scooping ashes, and a precision packing tool with pointed ends.
To make the process easier, some people also prefer to have a small funnel to make it easier to drop the ashes into the pendant with extreme precision. Another common choice is to purchase a clear, adhesive glue to help seal the pendant shut after filling.
How to Fill Your Cremation Jewelry or Pendant
Step #1. Find and prep the right workspace.
It is very important that you carefully prepare the right workspace for filling your cremation jewelry. Make sure that the area is a flat, level surface, without any crowded items. It should also be a very well-light area. Find a dining room table or office with excellent natural lighting as well as lighting fixtures, because seeing the small screws and placing the ashes are going to be difficult in low-light settings. You will also want to make sure there are no open windows or fans in the room, because the slightest breeze can spread ashes or cause small screws to go astray.
Step #2. Find the opening of the pendant or bead.
With cremation jewelry, you’ll typically find two types of openings. The first is a threaded screw-top opening which can usually be opened with your hand, slight pressure, and a few turns.
The second type of opening is a screw usually located on the backside of the bead or pendant. If it’s the small screw opening on the back, then you will need to use the appropriately sized Allen wrench or screwdriver to open it.
Step #3. Fill the pendant or bead.
Carefully place the screw on a level surface so you don’t lose it. Then, lay the pendant or bead down with the opening facing up. Make sure it is stable and balanced. Use the scooping utensil to separate a small bit of ashes from the box or bag of ashes, and carefully hold it over the opening of the bead or pendant. If you have a funnel, use it to precisely drop the ashes into the body of the cremation pendant without spillage. Then, use the pointed precision utensil to carefully pack the ashes in and make sure they clear the opening so you can still close it when you insert the screw.
Step #4: Clear and close the pendants for ashes.
Using the precision tip, carefully check each of the grooves on the screw top and use the tip to remove any ashes caught in the grooves. This will help eliminate difficulties reapplying the closure piece and making sure it is able to securely close on the unit. Take the closure unit, and hold it in one hand, firmly, while you also stabilize the pendant on the table with your other hand. Insert it evenly into the opening, so it’s perfectly aligned.
Twist the screw firmly back into place until it is tight and secure, you may have to use an allen wrench or screwdriver to properly close the opening. If you want to permanently seal the closure shut, some people elect to use a small dollop of permanent, clear glue onto the sides of the grooves so that when you secure it shut, it closes permanently.
Step #5. String your jewelry back onto the chain or bracelet.
The fifth and final step is to loop the bead or pendant back onto the chain or necklace that you will be wearing your pendant or bead on. Make sure the bead/pendant is facing the right direction and is perfectly aligned in the loop. Use the microfiber brush to give the pendant/bead and the chain a brushing over to remove any fingerprints or remnants of stray ashes.
How To Clean Cremation Jewelry?
You must be incredibly careful with the chemicals used for cleaning; many commercial cleaners cause varying degrees of harm to cremation jewelry. Bleach or bleach base products will darken a sterling silver piece and can completely dissolve solid gold if left to soak long enough.
The best method for shining jewelry metals is to simply give a good rubbing with a dry, lint free cloth, 1-2 times a month. This will remove any built-up oils or grime and expose the natural luster of the pendant or bead.
While there are plenty of silver or gold soaks for you to use, we do not personally recommend any of these be used since the liquid could compromise the piece and damage the remnants placed inside.
Why Choose GetUrns For Your Cremation Jewelry Needs?
GetUrns is a leading retailer for luxury cremation jewelry - providing beautiful sterling silver, gold, and stainless steel cremation jewelry so you can always have your loved one near. Our cremation jewelry for ashes selection comes in everything from necklace pendants, bracelets, bracelet beads, and even earrings for a complete set. At GetUrns, it is our goal to help you in any way possible during your time of loss. The GetUrns Family aims to serve and assist you choose the perfect cremation urn to properly memorialize your loved one.
Different Types of Cremation Jewelry
GetUrns has a wide variety of cremation jewelry in the form of cremation pendants, cremation bracelet beads, and even matching earrings for a complete set. Listed below are some of GetUrns most popular cremation jewelry options. Take a look to get an idea of what type or style of jewelry would best suit your needs.
Sterling Silver Wings of Hope Lavender Butterfly Cremation Pendant
Elegant and feminine, the Wings of Hope Lavender Pendant is a beautiful representation of butterflies which are powerful symbols of renewal and rebirth, making this pendant a perfect tribute for your deceased loved one. The butterfly comes with a hollow compartment inside to hold a small portion of cremated remains. The Wings of Hope Butterfly pendant also comes in two other finishes: Blue and White.
The Leaning Heart pendant is a gorgeous piece with a dual toned finish in rose gold and rhodium plated sterling silver. Placed in the center of the left curve sits a bright and shiny Swarovski Crystal, adding to this piece’s luxurious look. The surface of the pendant is smooth and shiny, while the edges are textured to provide a wonderful contrast for an eye catching design.
Simple and stunning, the Feather Pendant is a delicate and detailed piece of jewelry and serves as a bold but tasteful necklace. This pendant is delicately crafted out of durable sterling silver and holds a small pinch of ashes so you can keep your loved one near and dear.
For those who are grieving a beloved animal companion, GetUrns offers cremation jewelry specifically with our furry friends in mind.
The Princess Cat Pendant is a near exact replica of the Princess Cat Urn, just miniaturized into a pendant so you can carry a bit of your love right next to your heart. The best thing is, cat cremation jewelry has the ability to carry more than just ashes; you can place a whisker or bit of fur from your beloved cat instead. The Princess Cat Pendant comes in the same three finishes as the urn:Midnight,Bronze,Pearl.
Paw Pendant Cremation Jewelry
With a subtle but classy look, the paw pendant is an elegantly designed piece - a wearable memorial of your sweetheart. Made of Gold Vermeil or Sterling Silver; this pendant is incredibly high quality and is crafted to last. It’s design also allows you to proudly wear this necklace without being obvious to its purpose, helping you to find comfort with your pet but still have privacy in its contents.
This pendant is delicately crafted out of durable sterling silver, presenting a gorgeous dual toned leaning heart with tiny paw prints walking along, symbolizing our pets path across the rainbow bridge. Place a few strands of your pet’s fur or a portion of their ashes inside to commemorate the life they lived with you.
Sterling Silver Loveheart With Paws Cremation Bead
This bracelet bead is a gorgeous piece featuring a sterling silver heart with a few embossed paw prints to honor your furry friend. This bead can hold a pinch of cremated remains so you can always carry them with you wherever you go.
Cremation Jewelry - Frequently Asked Questions
How Do I Open My Pendant/Bracelet?
Some cremation jewelry is opened by twisting a screw or ball located on the piece.
Using the filling kit which may be provided, unscrew the threaded screw or ball on the cremation jewelry piece. Insert a pinch of ashes into the pendant/bead using the spoon/toothpick/funnel provided.
Once the pendant or bead has been opened, fill with a pinch of ashes or mementos. Then close the piece using the same method to open. If you’d like to permanently seal the jewelry, simply place 1-2 drops of epoxy glue on the threads before screwing the ball or screw closed.
Now That It's Filled, I Can't Close the Cremation Pendant/Bead.
The only reason the screw would not insert the entire way is if the pendant has too many ashes inside. We recommend removing some cremains and trying again. The screw must be inserted straight into the cavity hole, if there is even a slight tilt, this could cause the screw to not lay flush.
Also be sure to wipe the screw with a cloth first so there are no remnants of cremains on the threads.
Does The Jewelry Come With A Chain/Bracelet Included?
LoveUrns pendants always come with a chain, simply lift the gray flap inside the pendant box and the chain will be resting there.
Madelyn pendants come with a black satin cord.
Cremation beads do not come with the bracelet; those must be purchased separately.
Can Cremation Jewelry Get Wet?
We do not recommend wearing your cremation jewelry while in the shower, swimming, or exercising. The moisture and chemicals can damage the jewelry piece, regardless of the metal type. Submerging any cremation jewelry in water can introduce humidity inside, potentially disturbing your loved one inside.
Can Cremation Jewelry Be Engraved?
GetUrns does not offer engraving on any cremation jewelry. If interested, we recommend sourcing jewelers in your area who offer engraving and have them inspect the piece to see if engraving is possible.
Cremation jewelry is an elegant and subtle method of honoring and carrying a lost loved one close. Take a look through the rest of GetUrns to see the large variety of cremation jewelry pieces to commemorate a human or pet, in the form of pendants, beads, or earrings.
Grieving the loss of a loved one can be challenging. Creating memorials and honoring their memory can help you move through the healing process. Cremation jewelry is one tool that can be used to memorialize and grieve the loss of a loved one.
Custom cremation urns allow you to honor your loved one in truly unique ways. If you’ve lost a loved one and are struggling to find a way to make their cremation as special as possible, we’re here to help.
We're going to outline five crucial ways to customize urns for ashes in 2023/2024.
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