How to Send Flowers to a Funeral: Tips & Etiquette
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- Written by Holly Hughes on October 11, 2022
When someone passes away, our first and natural instinct is to express our grief and convey our support and condolences to the family left behind. Flowers, when carefully chosen and sent, can be a beautiful and moving way to do this. Ever-symbolic, flowers are a great way to express the complex emotions a funeral brings up, and give family members hope and comfort in the days after a funeral service.
However, knowing what flowers to send to a funeral and the etiquette around this occasion can be tricky. Here’s everything you need to know to ensure you get it absolutely right when sending flowers for a funeral.
Who sends flowers to a funeral?
Anyone can send flowers to a funeral to commemorate someone who has passed away or to show support, solidarity, and friendship to the grieving family members of the deceased. However, while it is possible for anyone to send floral arrangements to a funeral occasion, there is a definite code of etiquette that should help determine if flowers are the best option to express your grief or support and where to send them.
Immediate family members
Immediate family members of the deceased are the most common people to have flowers sent to a funeral and it is usually their arrangements that are placed in or around a funeral coffin or casket. Typically, these immediate relatives, be they parents, siblings, spouses, or children, will send heart-shaped arrangements, wreaths, casket sprays or funeral letters.
SendFlowers offers a mix of these stunning tributes.
Extended family and close friends also often choose to send flowers and can choose from a wide range of arrangements. Standing sprays and wreaths are often popular among these wider relatives or friends. However, more casual arrangements - or even living plants - are highly recommended as a gift as these can then be taken home by the family to enjoy in darker moments. Instead of sending these flowers to the church for the funeral, it’s also an idea as an extended family member or friend to have a flower arrangement delivered straight to the immediate family as a more personal and private gesture.
Find the perfect arrangement to express your sympathy with the touching arrangements at 1800Flowers.
Colleagues and business associates
For colleagues of the deceased or co-workers of the grieving families, flowers are also an acceptable and welcome gift. However, in this instance, depending on your relationship to the family, it is customary to have flowers sent to their place of work instead of the church, funeral home or cemetery. In the case of closer colleagues or friends, you can also opt to have flowers delivered to the deceased family’s home instead.
FromYouFlowers offers a selection of wreaths and informal flower arrangements, perfect for colleagues seeking to express their condolences.
When to send flowers for a funeral?
Despite the urge to express our sympathy with flowers, it is not always appropriate to send a floral arrangement to a funeral. What determines this are two main things: the wishes of the family of the deceased and their faith.
It is important to check these two important factors before you begin ordering and sending flowers to a funeral home. To find out the family wishes, check the obituary or notice in the paper or online. This will typically state if floral gifts are welcome.
In terms of religion, remember that what is customary for one faith might not be acceptable for another. For example, while flowers are a prominent feature in Catholic or Protestant Christian funerals, Jewish mourning does not typically encourage floral tributes at the funeral and so if you are attending a Jewish service it is best to avoid flowers. For more, read Should I Bring Flowers to a Jewish Funeral?
Where do you send flowers for a funeral?
Where to send flowers depends on two things: your relationship to the deceased and their family and the location of the funeral. If you are a close family member or friend and the funeral is taking place in a church or home service, then you can send your flowers there. You can also send flowers to the funeral home handling all arrangements. They will ensure your arrangement is displayed during the wake or visitation and is appropriately moved to the church, graveside or home service.
To accomplish this, you’ll need the name and address of the church, cemetery or funeral home where the services will be held, as well as the specific time and date of each service. The full name of the deceased is another important detail to include on your order to ensure it can reach the correct location on time.
If you aren’t close family, it is better to send any sympathy arrangements to the home instead. This is a respectful and touching gesture to express your sympathy without encroaching on the grieving process.
What flowers do you send to a funeral?
Flowers at a funeral should fulfill two functions: they should celebrate the life of the person who has passed away and they should provide comfort to the mourners. That is why white flowers or blooms in soft pastels such as light blues and pinks are so popular in funeral arrangements. They are respectful and represent innocence and the eternality of love and memory.
The most traditional flowers used in funeral arrangements are lilies, carnations, roses, and chrysanthemums. The best thing about each of these flowers is that they all come in many different colors, so you can personalize an arrangement according to the wishes of the family or the deceased.
After all, though white is a popular color, brighter hues can still be appropriate. If you know the deceased had a favorite color - like yellow, for example - don’t be afraid to incorporate that into the arrangement. If you’re unsure, reach out to the closest family member you know and ask!
Sending flowers to a funeral does need a little extra care than sending flowers to an office or school. However, by following these tips, you can ensure you send a special and moving tribute that will be appreciated long after a funeral ceremony.
To find the best flower delivery services offering fast delivery for funeral arrangements, read our guide to the Top 3 Same Day Funeral Flowers Delivery.
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