Cremation Jewelry Buyer's Guide

Intro - What is Cremation Jewelry?

At some point, we all realize that life doesn’t work on our schedule. Our plans for the future become prayers for a better tomorrow. When a loved one passes, we yearn to see them for just one more day. Our friends, family, and neighbors promise that their memory will be with us forever. But it’s hard to accept when they seem so far from use.

Our lost family and friends do stay in our memory for the rest of our lives. We may miss them, grieve for them, beg for them to come back, or even feel angry at them, but the love we have for them remains. However, we will always feel the need to commemorate their significance in our life. There are many ways to celebrate the lives of those we loved, including the long-standing tradition of memorial jewelry.

Cremation jewelry was made for people to hold onto their loved ones’ memories forever. Cremations have become more popular than traditional burials, so people have started to look for new ways to honor their loved ones through cremation art. While urns can be customized, cremation jewelry offers a unique and personal keepsake for family members to cherish and pass down children or grandchildren.

You can have necklaces, bracelets, pendants, and lockets made from the remains of your lost loved one or pet. You can wear them everyday, or cherish them as a keepsake. For many, cremation jewelry holds the same emotional value as a cremation urn. But unlike urns or other memorial gifts, you can wear jewelry as a part of your everyday life. Urns are ceremonial, but jewelry is sentimental. Cremation jewelry is also called remembrance jewelry, memorial jewelry, or funeral jewelry.

Jewelers use ashes or hair from the remains to create a gem or pendant. Some combine the calcium from the ashes with glass in a melting process that form unique patterns within every bead. Different jewelers use slightly different methods, but handcrafted jewelry always produces the best results. Naturally these beads reflect the color of the ashes (white and dark gray), but you can also have them colored to make the piece more artistic.

As you start shopping for cremation keepsakes, consider jewelry as a part of your cremation memorial. Jewelry lasts a lifetime - it can help you carry the memories of your loved one for the rest of your life. You can pass down your pendant or bracelet to your children as a family heirloom. It will help you remember the love and joy of a life spent with your loved one with a timeless cremation keepsake. You have many options for choosing the perfect piece of cremation jewelry, depending on your unique style.

Types of Cremation Jewelry

You can find cremation jewelry for any style or design. Some are made to store the ashes of a loved one or lost pet in a locket. Others create a unique bead or gem from the ashes. You can also have jewelry customized to have engravings on the finished piece. Many people like to have the name of the deceased, their birth date or a sentimental quote engraved onto the locket. Cremation jewelry has a wide price range. You can find styles that are both affordable and high quality.

Jewelry from Bellabeads is made from .925 sterling silver, fine silver or 14K gold. We handcraft cremation jewelry by using a unique artisan method of beadmaking. You can choose from all types of cremation jewelry to fit your unique style for the remembrance piece. We have nine different types of memorial jewelry, but these are our most popular:

Charm beads and bracelets are common cremation jewelry pieces, because they can be worn on a regular basis. Some people want to wear their cremation jewelry every day. Charm bracelets compliment other pieces of jewelry very well. They are perfect for smaller keepsakes or family heirlooms to be passed down from generation to generation. You can bulk order charm beads for multiple family members who wish to have memorial jewelry from the cremains.

Necklaces, both lockets and pendants, are great keepsakes to commemorate the special memory of your loved one. Memorial necklaces tend to be the most popular choice for women. Some people like to have them engraved with names, dates, or special quotes to remind them of their loved one’s special place in their life. Pendants are also a popular choice for pet memorial jewelry. A bead made from your pet’s remains creates a lasting impression on the love you shared with your dog or cat. You can also use pet hair for pendants and beads.

Shop for rings and earrings to match you other cremation jewelry. You can wear rings everyday, since they will match any other piece of jewelry or clothing. Earrings also look nice with other pieces of jewelry. Some women buy memoriaal rings for men to match their bracelets or necklaces. You can orders these in sets, or get duplicate rings or earrings for multiple people in the family. Our unique Bellabeads are set in gold or sterling silver. They are handcrafted with care to last a lifetime.

Pet memorial jewelry has become more common in recent years. People want to honor their lost furry friends in the same way they would other members of the family. Anyone who’s owned a dog or cat for understands the unique bond you form with them over the years. Pet memorial necklaces come in a variety of styles for you to find the perfect piece that represents your pet. Or you can shop for memorial charm beads to add to your favorite bracelet.

How Cremation Jewelry is Made

Every jeweler has their own process for creating cremation jewelry. Just as every artist has their own unique style or theme in their paintings, a jeweler uses his or her creativity to make their own brand or style.

Bellabeads has its own process unlike any other jeweler, but we don't like to give up our secret ;) We first tested our designs with flower petals, but the production works just as well with ashes or pet hair. We can even combine flower petals and cremains to add color to your piece. This process is unique to Bellabeads, and produces long-lasting and incredibly beautiful cremation jewelry.

With our designs, your piece of jewelry is completely original. No two of our beads look exactly alike!

If you want your jewelry to have a certain color, we can addflower petals of your choice into the design. If you have flowers from the funeral, we encourage you to send those. We only need the petals, which should be wrapped in paper towels and overnight shipped with the ashes. We can combine your flower petals and ashes to make a colorful piece. However if you do not have any flower petals from the service, we can use our own to add color to the piece.

Our team of jewelers will craft the marbleized beads, then carefully set them in your selection of sterling silver, fine silver or 14k gold jewelry. We fire, sand, and finish the bead so it has a glass-like appearance. This makes the bead more durable and scratch resistant. However Bellabeads jewelers will repair any piece that has damages within the first six months of purchase, as long as the damage was not incurred due to improper care.

Our process takes about 12-16 weeks to complete. This is because every bead is handcrafted with the greatest of care. If you need your jewelry by a specific date, you can call one of our professional service members. They can make arrangements to accommodate your request. We want you to have a truly beautiful piece of jewelry to honor the life of the one whom you loved so dearly. We also want to make your experience with Bellabeads a positive one.

Benefits of Cremation Jewelry

Choosing to turn your cremated ashes into something new can be a difficult decision. You may wonder if it’s what your loved one would want you to do with their remains, or how family members will react. But if keeping your loved one’s ashes closer to you makes you feel happy and at peace, then you should absolutely feel free to do so. Your past and present loved ones want you to have that comfort. Cremation jewelry can give you that peace of mind.

Jewelry can be a part of your everyday life. It is a part of the way you present yourself to the world, and how you express your own sense of beauty. You can wear cremation jewelry everyday, or put it in a safe place for special occasions. Smaller pieces of jewelry, such as rings or earrings can be worn with other accessories. Necklaces are perfect for formal attire, but they can also be worn on a daily basis. People will notice your cremation jewelry, and love it for its beauty and special meaning.

Cremation jewelry also helps lessen the pain of the grieving process. Urns represent the mourning of loss, while jewelry celebrates the continuation of life and remembrance. When you can carry a piece of memorial jewelry with you, your loved one doesn't seem so far away. Celebrating their life is just as important as feeling hurt by their passing. While the pain will linger for a long time, accepting the loss and commemorating the memories of your loved one will become easier with time.

You can make multiple pieces of jewelry with your ashes. Bellabeads only needs ½ teaspoon of ashes for each design. We can make multiple charm beads or create several types of cremation jewelry from your ashes. If multiple family members want memorial jewelry, you can make a bulk order online. Each person can create their own unique design. Or, you can order a jewelry set (such as a matching necklace and earring combination). Our jewelry designs are one of a kind. Each piece you order will turn out completely distinct from any other piece of jewelry you could find elsewhere.

You can combine flowers to make different colors and designs. If you have funeral flowers, or know a flower species that was special to your loved one, include it in your order. Adding flower petals to memorial jewelry is an exclusive service only available through Bellabeads.  After our processing, you’ll receive a bead that reflects the color of your flowers and ashes in a marbleized pattern.

Cremation jewelry can be passed down to the next generation. This piece of memorial jewelry could be given to your children as a remembrance of your family for years to come. Jewelry like this is not just for fashion, but to commemorate the love you have for family. Some families pass down heirlooms as tradition. This piece of Bellabeads memorial jewelry could be what you give your children, and what they pass onto the next generations.

History of Memorial Jewelry

Memorial jewelry has roots in ancient history, when small villages would use the hair, blood, or  belongings of the deceased to craft mementos for their family members. These crude jewelry pieces were sometimes used in burial ceremonies. Other times they were kept for the family to cherish and pass down to the next of kin. Though they typically did not make use of cremains, these artisan crafts piqued our interest in memorial jewelry.

In the 16th and 17th centuries, people wore mourning jewelry as part of the religious ceremonies honoring the dead. The jewelry was called memento mori, translated in Latin as “remember the dead.” Royal families would go into mourning for years; friends of these royals would give mourning rings, signifying their social status as those who could afford expensive gifts for the hierarchy. Some mourning jewelry had the name, birth and death date, and age of the deceased engraved. These pieces were made of white or black enamel to symbolize whether the deceased was married or single when they passed.

In America, the tradition of memorial jewelry was used to grieve soldiers, starting at the time of the Civil War. Soldiers would leave locks of their hair with family in case they died in battle. Women would weave their hair into lockets and wear them if they heard their husband or son had died. People also used memorial jewelry for children during this time. Many children did not live to adulthood due to poor and sparse medical care. Some people continued to save locks of hair, but it was less popular after the Civil War.

Cremation jewelry as we know it today did not start until the 1990s. Keepsake pendants became popular as jewelers started to create urn-shaped lockets to store small amounts of ashes. As people started to want these treasures more and more for their loved ones, jewelers began experimenting with more artistic cremation ideas. Glass blowing and ash crystallization were the first processing methods used to turn ashes into beads and pendants. Still artists looked for ways to add their own style to meet growing demand for cremation jewelry art.

Bellabeads created the first cremation jewelry that uses our secret technique to create one of a kind beads. We are also the only company who can use both memorial flowers and ashes in one design. Our founder Christina Segarra invented the process first using flower petals, as an extension of her flower preservation service. Once she realized she could create jewelry from her flowers, she wanted to expand into an entire line of memorial jewelry for every occasion. As we continue to grow, more options will be available for those who want to honor their loved ones with beautiful memorial jewelry.

What Type of Cremations Are There?

If a death is expected, you’ve likely researched both cremation and burials. It’s best to discuss both with family so you know that everyone agrees on what is the right way to honor your beloved family member. If you decide cremation is the right choice, contact either the local funeral home or go directly to a crematory. Crematories can take the remains of the deceased as soon as a loss is reported, or after the wake or funeral service. The remains are reduced to basic elements and bone, and then returned to the families for memorial services. You can use the ashes for a variety of different memorial services.

Many people choose to cast the ashes into the air, or into a body of water significant to the deceased. This method is most commonly seen in film, which is why people so often choose to use their ashes this way. For families who want to have a place to commemorate and visit after the service, they may choose  to cast the ashes around an object such as a tree, or have them raked in a cremation garden. Having a landmark to visit can be helpful for some while they grieve the loss.

Burying ashes is another common practice, especially for married couples who have joint gravesites. If one spouse wants to be buried, and the other wants to be cremated, the cremains can be buried next to the traditional burial site. Again this helps the grieving family members by providing a place to visit and pay respect. You can bury ashes in a graveyard, a backyard, or some public places. Check with your local government offices to see where it’s permissible in your city to bury ashes.

Cremains are usually returned in an urn chosen by the family. Some people keep the ashes in the urn as a until they decide the best way to carry out a memorial service. Even after the ashes return to the earth, most people keep the urn as a memento. You can buy urns at your local funeral home, or shop online for a greater selection. You can find hardwood, metal, stone, and miniature urns, or specialized urns for scattering remains.

If you want to bury or scatter your ashes in the water, you can also buy biodegradable urns. These are meant to be eco-friendly, and dissolve in either water or soil. Some people prefer to use these urns rather than scattering the ashes, because scattering can be messy or emotionally straining. Biodegradable urns are also less expensive than traditional urns. They typically range from $30 to $100, as compared to other urns which are usually $50 to $300.

The type of cremation you choose depends on the type of memorial service you wish to have. If you plan to have a viewing or “wake,” you will have some time to decide on cremation before the funeral service. Some people have the funeral service with the body and casket, while others choose cremation right away. These decisions seem to drown you all at once. Take time to think, talk with family, and most importantly take care of yourself before you make the final decision.

Personalized Cremation Jewelry

You can find standard cremation lockets from almost any jewelry retailer. But personalized cremation jewelry can be hard to find. Even some of the online searches for personalized cremation jewelry just show urn lockets with engraving options. These are personalized, but most people are looking for something that actually incorporates the cremains into the design.

Engraved jewelry is beautiful but does not show uniqueness in style. Using the ashes from cremation you can create a beautiful, one of a kind piece of jewelry that no one else could ever replicate - just like no one could ever replicate the memories of the person you loved and lost. Very few places offer quality cremation jewelry. Because this type of jewelry is such a fine art, and dealing with other people’s ashes is such a big commitment, few jewelers want to experiment with it. Bellabeads, however, has proved to be the best cremation jeweler online.

Bellabeads offers cremation jewelry that no one else has been able to recreate. Since we first started selling cremation jewelry along with our flower memorial beads, our customers always come back to us for their remembrance jewelry and tell their families to browse our catalogue. Because we use a unique technique rather than glass crystallization, our beads have unique color swirls and marble patterns. No two beads are produced exactly alike. Our jewelers are trained in the process, but add their own creative insight into each piece.

Bellabeads jewelers all have backgrounds in art and design. Our senior designer Jessie has two B.F.As in ceramic and glass art. She teaches each of our designers our how to craft the beads and set the paste into a pendant, and how to finish the design to add the glass-like appearance for longevity and durability. She has worked with us for many years, and has helped our three other designers to develop their own techniques to make beautiful memorial beads.

We produce all of our beads by hand, to retain excellent quality in our products Hand-crafting takes time, so we accept a limited amount of orders per month to exceed customer expectations. Our service ratings are a true testament to the quality of work that we consistently provide to our new and life-long customers. Bellabeads jewelry is not only unique in the way our finished product looks, but how we treat every step of the process with care and concern.

Cremation Jewelry for Pets

Pets become part of the family, no matter how hard you try to not fall in love with them. They steal your heart with their quirky personalities. While it’s never easy to say goodbye, for some reason we all take pet losses incredibly hard. It can be impossible to imagine life without your favorite companion by your side. Tomorrow comes, and you feel like everything is now completely different in your life.

At Bellabeads we understand the struggles pet owners go through during a loss. Christina Segarra, founder of Bellabeads jewelry, owns two dogs who she adores. Chloe and ChiChi help run the design shop and greet customers at our store. They help bring smiles to the customers who recently lost a pet in their life. We adore these two little helpers, and believe that every pet deserves a proper memorial to commemorate their contribution to the family’s life.

Bellabeads has a specific line of cremation jewelry dedicated to pet memorials. You can choose from our customizable pendants, or order simple charm beads to add to your favorite bracelet. Our store is constantly updated to include new designs and products. If you return to Bellabeads after your first purchase, make sure you browse our section on pet memorial jewelry for new products. Our top three design picks from past customers are:

  • Personalized Dog Bone Pendant - This necklace features one 12mm cremation bead and an engravable dog bone charm. We can use either ashes from your pet cremation, or use hair samples to create a bead that matches your pet’s fur coat. The sterling silver pendant is 22x7 mm, so engraved words should be short. If you want to add your pet’s name, just write it on the INSTRUCTION BOX in the Mail Order Form. Our customers love this design because it is simple but absolutely beautiful.
  • Pet Memorial Oval Pendant - This pendant is also simple yet stunning. The cremation stone is set in a 18x25 mm oval pendant. Sterling silver beads line the border to accent the unique colors from your ashes of pet hair. This pendant has no accessory charms on it, which gives it a more elegant and simplistic design. We can use up to three colors to make the marbleized design inside the setting. Send ½ teaspoon of ashes, and a clipping of fur to combine the colors.
  • Paw Prints on My Heart Pendant - This pet memorial pendant is perfect for both cat and dog owners. The charm has the cut-out of a paw print, rounded and finished on both sides. The bronze setting perfectly displays the colors of your ashes or pet hair. This necklace includes one handcrafted bead strung next to the paw print charm. Mail your ashes or hair clippings in a secure ziplock bag and we will begin the process of handcrafting your Bellabead memorial pendant.

Where to Buy Cremation Jewelry

The first step to finding the right memorial jewelry is comparing local stores or online retailers. We know that once you find Bellabeads jewelry however, you won’t want any other company to create your handcrafted piece. We’ve grown most of our business through customers referrals. Over twenty years of excellent customer service speaks well for our business, our people, and most importantly our memorial jewelry. You cannot find any other jeweler that uses our process. We take time and great care into making the perfect cremation piece for you or your family.

Bellabeads has nine different lines of memorial jewelry, including charm beads, bracelets, earrings, necklaces, rings, gold jewelry, men’s accessories, pet memorial jewelry and jewelry add-ons. Each line of products can be made from flower petals, cremains, or a combination. No other company can include flower petals in their cremation jewelry designs. So if you want to add a unique color from funeral flowers or a special type of bloom, we can make it happen. Many of our customers come back to use our services for wedding, birth, and other celebration keepsakes. However our most popular line of products is the cremation and remembrance jewelry selections.

Bellabeads has been in business since 1994. Our longevity in the industry speaks volumes for our ability to preserve the memories of others in beautifully handcrafted designs. Each artist goes through a long training process to learn about our unique design methods. It’s not easy to replicate, but we invest into each of our employees’ development and craftsmanship. Though we use the same process for each bead, no two come out exactly alike. Our craft allows for the designer to add their creative intuition into the final product.

If you’re still not convinced to use Bellabeads for your cremation jewelry, ask about our quality guarantee. If you have any damage to your jewelry (not due to improper care) within the first six months, you can send it back and we will repair it for free. We honor our commitment to excellence by ensuring every customer that their Bellabeads jewelry will last a lifetime. If you need repairs after six months, call us and we will give you an estimate.

Conclusions

Cremation jewelry is the perfect way to celebrate the life of someone who meant more to you than words can say. Their memory, their influence, their character can be preserved in a timeless piece of art. Not only is cremation jewelry beautiful and everlasting, you carry with you everyday. Instead of losing the ashes after the memorial, use them to make a family heirloom. Your children and grandchildren will be able to honor and remember the importance of your loved one for the rest of their lives. And you can have the peace of mind that your family member was honored in a truly special way.

Look for different types of cremation jewelry before you make a final purchase. You can shop for blown glass jewelry, cremation stones, or the unique cremation beads from Bellabeads.You want to choose a type of jewelry that you would want to wear. Bellabeads has bracelets, necklaces, rings, and special designs for men and pet memorial jewelry. We have nine different collections to choose from, and when you do make your selection one of our designers will be in contact to ensure you get the exact piece of jewelry you want and expect.

People have used jewelry to express mourning for centuries. Royalty in the 16th and 17th centuries wore memorial jewelry for years after their heirs had passed. In America, people started using memorial jewelry to honor soldiers lost during war time. Remembrance jewelry has taken many forms throughout its history. In the early 1990s, however, the first cremation jewelry designs became popularized. Bellabeads stemmed from the first glass and cremation stone jewelry, inventing a new process that combines other colors and mediums into the final product.

Cremation jewelry offers a great alternative to urns. More and more people want to use their loved one’s ashes for something more, so that they don’t sit in the home for years unused. You can still keep some of the ashes in an urn, however. Bellabeads only needs a ½ teaspoon per bead to make your design. We ask that you keep the rest, unless you want to order multiple pieces. Because we only need a small amount of ashes, you can keep the remainder for other memorial services.

We hope you’ve learned a little more about cremation jewelry, and can now see the tremendous value it has for those who have lost someone special in their life. Your cremation jewelry could be the way you commemorate your loved one, serving as a keepsake and reminder that their influence continues even after they’re gone. If you would like to learn more about Bellabeads memorial jewelry, visit our shop or feel free to contact us. We hope you come back to Bellabeads for your memorial jewelry designs.