The words we use every day have an incredible impact on how we navigate our lives, as well as what we are remembered for. That is why humans of all cultures and backgrounds have memorialise things in words since the dawn of language. Words are powerful and can leave a lasting impression that will stand the test of time. This is why we choose inscriptions for headstones to honor and remember our lost loved ones. 

Headstone inscriptions are there to give a brief snapshot of how those left behind felt about the passed individual. They honor how the recently passed individual will be remembered, and maybe even call to memory a specific aspect of their life. That is why choosing the right inscription can be such a daunting task. 

Choosing the Inscription for a Headstone

When choosing a headstone inscription, you want it to be absolutely perfect. This is because it will be immortalised in stone or metal and will be there to mark the site of your loved one forever. So, you want to think carefully about what you will say to make it perfect. 

When choosing a headstone inscription, you can almost write whatever you want–with some exceptions that exclude profanity or vulgarity, etc,. This means you can go with common epitaphs, proverbs, scriptures, or even custom phrases or sayings that you may find are perfect for your situation. 

You want to take the time to think long and hard about what inscription you are going to choose before you begin the next steps towards finalising the inscription itself. 

Choosing the Various Elements of the Inscription

In general, your inscription will feature a few things:

  • The name and birthdate/passing date of the deceased
  • A short message or epitaph dedicated to the deceased

The length of the inscription will be limited to the available space on the stone, as well as your budget. Most people go with very short inscriptions that contain some kind words or encouraging remarks. A few popular examples could include:

  • An inspiration to us all
  • Deeply missed, fondly remembered
  • Remembered with love and respect
  • A true joy until the very end

These are just a general idea of what might be inscribed on the stone. Other individuals may choose a memorable quote or inside joke from the deceased, or a favorite proverb or scripture of the deceased. 

After you settle on what you want to say, you can begin choosing how it will look when engraved into the stone or metal. Here you have a few options:

  • Incised lettering
  • V-cut lettering
  • Letterhead inscription
  • Embossed lettering
  • Raised letter inscription

These are the different styles of engraving that will give a unique feel and texture to the inscription. This will be chosen in tandem with font–which your headstone provider will give you an extensive list of options for. 

What is the Cost of Headstone Inscriptions?

Headstone inscriptions can vary depending on a host of factors. These mainly include difficulty, and length. If you go with a very complex font and design paired with a long inscription, you can expect to pay a premium when compared to a more simple design. 

Most stonemasons will charge per letter/symbol. This price will fluctuate based on:

  • Type of font
  • Lettering material
  • Use of any paints or gold leafing
  • Addition of photos or imagery
  • Number of letters

Due to how many variables exist, it’s impossible to estimate how much this will cost. But, your stonemason and headstone provider will be able to supply you with an accurate price quote when you have chosen everything you want and are looking for. 

Final Thoughts

At Northern Headstones we know how difficult it is to sum a life up into just a few words. No one’s existence can be encapsulated in a few short letters or images. However, we can memorialise our loved ones in a way that will bring peace and comfort with a few words of memory inscribed on their headstone. Our team of expert stonemasons and headstone designers can help you in the process of finding the right words to say, that will last forever.

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