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  3. Headstone Design Options

Headstone Design Options

A beautiful headstone is a long lasting way to celebrate the life of a loved one and serve as a grave marker. However, choosing the headstone design during this very difficult time can be overwhelming and daunting. Designing a headstone can be a very emotional and challenging process, but it is important to choose an appropriate design that will properly honour the departed. There are many of different designs for headstones out there, some more formal than others.

In this article, we discuss the different headstone design options. If you require some further help choosing a headstone in Brisbane or south east Queensland, give MMS Memorials a call on 07 3265 5433 and we can assist.

How to choose a headstone style?

Choosing a headstone design can be guided by a range of variables:

For example:

  • Who is the memorial for?
  • Where will the memorial be located - in a cemetery or will it be a cremation?
  • The budget
  • Headstone material, shape, and design
  • Your design preferences
  • Any particular religious requirements
  • Particular cemetery guidelines
Headstone Design with black and grey granite

Where do I go to get a headstone?

There are many places you can get one, including funeral homes and even online websites - but we always recommend going with an experienced monumenal masons to have the project completed correctly and to your specific requirements. Your local monumental mason will be able to create a headstone which meets you and your family's particular design preferances from top quality stone, ensuring a long lasting memorial.

Who is the headstone memorial for?

The memorial can be for an individual, companion or family. Headstone design and size can depend on whether it is a memorial for an individual, couple, or family plot.

An individual memorial memorialises an individual, a companion monument is usually for a couple and uses a single stone to mark two graves. A family monument is used to incorporate multiple gravesites where the members of a family will be buried. Grave markers for the family members can be added over time.

Types of headstones

Traditional headstones are usually the most popular headstone design. They have a simple, traditional look that is very formal and can be suitable for just about any cemetery or memorial site. Many people prefer this style because it has classic clean lines without being too overbearing on the landscape design of cemeteries - not to mention these headstones are easy to read from far away which makes them great headstone options for visitors.

Modern headstones tend to follow more sleek, modern trends in terms of their overall shape and design. These types of headstone styles also come in many different sizes so they can fit pretty much anywhere. The downside however is that some might find these headstones impersonal compared to other options.

Natural headstones are just that: headstones made out of naturally occurring materials such as stone or marble. These headstone styles normally hold more sentimental value for families because these are the types of headstones you would usually see in older cemeteries, which makes them perfect if your loved one is someone whose life revolved around nature and animals

Headstone with heart design

Unique headstones also tend to be very popular among different themes or individuals with unique tastes. You can find a large variety of shapes, sizes, colours and designs when it comes to choosing an individualized headstone style - meaning they're suitable for everyone. However, since these headstones tend to show off personal interests some might find them too much.

Memorial headstones are very similar in style to traditional headstone designs but these headstones tend to be a little more extravagant and over the top with their overall design. These types of headstones often display an image or scene that will reflect some event, memory or personality trait unique only to the family member who has passed away.

Grave marker headstones are actually used as grave markers rather than actual headstone memorials. This means they're typically flat without any large raised areas which makes them suitable for lawn cemeteries where the grass is grown over graves.

If you are struggling with choosing a headstone design, read our article on How to Choose a Headstone.

Where will the memorial be located?

The final resting place can be a cemetery if it is a traditional burial, howeverm the trend for cremation has been rising in recent years. Cremation also offers plenty of memorial options - you can scatter cremation ashes according to your family's wishes and your local state laws, display them in a cremation urn in your home, or place them in a memorial garden marked with a plaque.

Ask the local cemetery for any regulations or rules they may have or check your local council website for relevant regulations. It is better to ask as many questions before your memorial is made so you avoid any last-minute surprises.

Book a experienced Brisbane memorials specialist here

What are your headstone design preferences?

It is very important to choose a headstone design that reflects the personality of your loved one and your family. The main things to consider in the headstone include the material, size, shape and personalisation.

Headstones can be made from different materials like granite, sandstone, marble, travertine, and limestone.

Granite headstones are commonly used as it is durable, low-maintenance, high-quality, and available in a range of colours. Granite can withstand harsh weather conditions and stand the test of time.

Headstones come in different shapes like:

  • Upright
  • Flat
  • Curved
  • Angel
  • Veteran

Lastly, the finishing of the headstone is really important. It could be finished, part polished, pitched, honed, steeled, axed or sawed.

Bronze Memorial Plaque

Headstone inscriptions & accessories

Give a personal touch to the memorial by incorporating:

  • Traditional sayings or quotes
  • Symbols like crucifixes and crosses
  • Laser or hand-etched image of the individual or images that tell the story of their life
  • Cremation Urns
  • Vases
  • Lamps
  • Ceramic photos and frames
  • Candle boxes
  • Statues
  • Flowers

The headstone inscription is the final tribute to your loved one. It's often hard deciding what words will best summarize their whole life, but it can be done by using a few well-chosen phrases which is engraved onto the headstone (that often only allows room for short text). A short inscription can simplify the process and make it easy to find a few well-chosen words. If you are looking for some inscription ideas, check out some of our suggestions on our Headstone Wording Ideas page.

Types of memorials

Headstones are just one of the memorial options to choose from. There are various different kinds of memorials like:

MMS Memorials headstone designs

Here are just a few of our headstone design options. More designs can be found here - Headstone plaque designs

Base & Plaque Design C - One

Base & Plaque Design C1

Base & Plaque Design C - Two

Base & Plaque Design C2

Budget consideratons

The design options for the headstone will depend a lot on your budget. Is the budget yet to be determined or do you have an amount earmarked for the funeral arrangements? If you are unsure as to how much the headstone costs will be, speak to a few different providers regarding the type you are considering and they will be able to provide you with quotes. As a general guide options can start from around $2,000 for a headstone and base, simple lawn markers can be around $750, and full monuments can cost $5,000 or more. Don't forget to also speak to the cemetery in which the headstone will be placed to find out what the permit fees are - if any - or any other fees associated with the grave.

Your local headstone supplier

Lastly, who designs your headstone is an important consideration, you need to hire monumental professionals who are skilled, reputable, and trustworthy. It is also important to ask your monumental mason about the cemeteries they service in your area.

MMS Memorials service a range of cemeteries throughout Brisbane and SE Qld - see the list here Cemeteries We Service.

If you are in Brisbane or SEQ need more information regarding any of the above memorial options, or are unsure as to the best option for you, give us a call on 07 3265 5433 or complete a quote request form. We have been supplying premium quality stone products and headstones since 1976 and we can be trusted to provide a quality long-lasting product for your loved one's final resting place.