If you’ve lost a loved-one and cremation ashes aren’t enough of a keepsake to offer you solace, then you might consider using the services of US company LifeGem, who for several thousand dollars will create an authentic diamond for your finger or for a pendant from the carbon of cremation ashes. A wearable keepsake may well bring you comfort, but it is hardly likely to encourage you to ‘move on’, is it? Furthermore, it is well to remember, unless you’ve paid a premium to have an individual cremation for your beloved, what you receive from a crematorium, are ‘mixed’ ashes. What relatives perhaps don’t realise is, the dead as a rule are not cremated individually. It remains far more cost-effective to burn several bodies at the same time and in the same furnace! So unless you’ve paid the premium, what would be the point of approaching LifeGem?

Jewellery doesn’t tickle you fancy, well how about a bespoke sculpture? A company called Eversculpt, based in Tadworth, Staffordshire, with very little coaxing is prepared to make you a quite different type of remembrance keepsake. Provided you are prepared to part with your dearly beloved’s ashes and £795 to £4000, you will receive back a glass sculpture made from…yes, you guessed it! A popular item is the ‘eternal flame’.

Now if you think the above type of keepsakes are macabre, then how about considering morbid fragrances, marketed as ‘Heaven Scent’? Bereaved Frenchwoman Katia Apalategui, in conjunction with work done by scientists at Le Havre University in Northern France, has set up a perfume company to allow grieving relatives to buy a bottle of ‘tailor-made perfume’ that captures the unique scent of their departed loved-ones, extracted from the deceased’s clothing. At £400 a bottle it is a lot cheaper than bespoke jewellery. So whether it be jewellery of the dead or olfactory comfort, you must decide whether you intend wallowing in the past or looking to the future! Personally, if money was no object I’d opt for a wearable keepsake and move on! I’ve always found staring at a funeral urn placed on a mantelpiece or bedside table to be morbid in the extreme!

And then there is the really bazaar! Designer Mark Sturkenboom has designed something called a Memory Box. Within it is a necklace, a scent diffuser, an amplifier for playing music that reminds you of the deceased, and wait for it…a dildo with a gold-plated tubular urn inside it which contains 21 grams of a loved one’s ashes!?! The significance of the 21 grams is, it is supposed to be the exact weight of the soul. I think one would have had to have enjoyed an extraordinary love life to opt for a Memory Box, don’t you? Christ, is there no end to Man’s imagination? Of course not all people are worth remembering!


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