blue glass pendant made with ashes
article in Newark Advertiser focusing on Jon Harris

I am often asked about what you can with your loved ones ashes. Like most things in this modern era we now have so many different options. Obviously, the simple traditional options, such as placing them in a Memorial Garden, having them interred or scattered at a special place, may be the best option for you.  Most importantly, it should be a way that brings a measure of comfort to you and your family and be in sync with your loved ones wishes.

There are a number of options, all of which have been around for some time and may suit your family, you can look on the internet and you may find what you are looking for but I thought I would just give you a few ideas to save you a bit of time.

It is well worth reading through till the end as something may jump out at you, some of them are simple, some of them are a little out there and some of them are expensive, but they are all just a little different………

suited man holding metal ashes urn in front of 3 white candles and white funeral flowers
tattoo artist


The technique involves adding a very small amount of the ashes into the tattoo ink before it’s placed into the needle and applied. Thereafter, the process does not differ much differ to getting a regular tattoo, just ensure that you have done your research and you find a tattooist who is skilled in this sort of commemorative tattoo. I would also take some time to consider exactly what you are going to have done, after all it will be a permanent memorial to your loved one and needs to be perfect.

paintbrush dipping in colours on a palette


Similar in some respect to the tattoo, as in a very small amount of the ashes are blended in with paint. Many companies will do this for you, simply send them a picture of what you have in mind, be that a portrait of the person, or a special place that is meaningful to you and your family. If you are an artist yourself, then obviously you can create a piece that is truly unique and will be a lasting family memorial.

fireworks against a dark sky


Small portions of the ashes are loaded into a large number of individual fireworks that will be used in a display. Most of the ashes will be scattered by two types of fireworks knows as mines and cakes. There are many companies in the UK that provide this service, they can either arrange the display for you or create the fireworks and deliver them. I would imagine that this could be a truly spectacular celebration of life and a wonderful way to end a memorial service.

ashes being dispersed in space


There are a number of companies that offer this service and the price range differs dramatically. In some, the ashes will be contained in a satellite, circle the earth and then re-enter as a shooting star. Or the ashes are placed in a balloon filled with helium gas, travels 21 milesupwards, whereupon the ashes are scattered. There is even a company that can send the ashes to the moon or even further into deep space. Whatever you decide, it will be very symbolic and every time you look to the stars you will remember your loved one.

blue pendant made of glass with ashes


A very small amount of the ashes are mixed with a resin in a colour of your choice, which is applied to the piece in several different stages.

Once set, it forms a hard, glossy surface which can be then made into a stunningly unique piece of handmade jewellery, be that a ring, bracelet or necklace. The choice is yours and it is not overly expensive!!

single diamond facing front in shades of blue


Not the cheapest, but not as expensive as sending the ashes to the moon! Again, the cost varies depending on the colour, quality and size of the diamond you want creating. The stone can then be put into a piece of your choice. Carbon accounts for about 18% of the human body, which makes turning human ashes into diamonds possible. The high temperatures and pressures are recreated over a 6 to 9 month period to produce a diamond that would normally take over a billion years to form.

round beige bio urn sitting on the grass under a tree


There are a multitude of companies that offer a greener alternatives such as the fully bio-degradable urns. They are designed to convert into a tree, a plant or can even be sent out into the sea. Most contain a bio-degradable bag into which the ashes are placed, which eventually dissolves into the earth or sink to the bottom of the water.

vinyl record on white cloth surrounded by small pink flowers


Companies can combine the ashes during the vinyl making process. The ashes get pushed into the grooves of a raw vinyl record before it comes into contact with plates, at the pressing stage. You can either then place a recording of your loved ones voice or some of their favourite tracks onto the record.

aeroplane in pale blue sky releasing ashes


This is not as simple as it sounds as it poses some difficulties, but there are a handful of companies that do offer aerial ashes scattering. The release of ashes into the sky can be symbolic of the need to be free as a bird, floating where the winds may take them. Some companies will provide a video of the event, and the exact GPS marker of where it took place.  Many families incorporate a memorial service on the ground while looking up to the skies.

eternal reef on the bottom of the sea


A beautiful alternative for someone who loves the water.  An Eternal Reef is made of environmentally-safe cast concrete that is used to create new marine habitat for fish and other forms of sea life. The ashes of your loved one are incorporated into an environmentally-safe cement mixture, designed to create artificial reef formations.

The Eternal Reefs are then placed on the sea bed, creating an artificial reef that brings sea-life and nourishes a rich and diverse ecosystem. There is a site in the UK, which is similar, but the ashes are not part of the concrete but are put inside a Solace Stone, which is then placed inside the eternal reef.

So these are just 10 ideas, there are others, such as creating a garden sculpture, wind chimes and glass works, but hopefully I have just sparked your imagination a little.

I am keen to try and get this information into the wider community and humbly ask that you share this blog on your preferred social media platform as below. If you have any questions or would like more information, please do not hesitate to get in touch via my contact details.

Peace, Love and Happiness, Jon X