Funeral Flower Etiquette and Customs

As each and every culture is unique and differen't so are the methods they use to part with their loved ones. It's important to respect the rituals and ceremonies for each tradition as many community and family members play close attention to the final farewell for a loved friend, family member or colleague.

Roman Catholic Funeral Customs

After the passing, a priest is contacted so the last rights can be read and the funeral planning can begin. In attendance of the funeral it is customary to go to the family and express your sincere sympathy and offers your respects. If a personal attendance cannot be made, it is customary to send the family a flower tribute. Flowers are good for comforting the family and can be delivered to the family home, funeral home or service. In some circumstance the family may ask for donations in lieu of flower and this should always be respected. Casual clothing is now acceptable to certain regards and it is no longer necessary to wear black attire. Ensure you wear something that looks presentable and will not offend. Shorts and thongs would not be acceptable. The service is held at the church or funeral home and sometimes even the residence. After the service the you may choose to follow the procession to the cemetery. The casket is laid beside the grave where the burial rites are then given. In many cases flowers may be left on the casket and many Roman Catholics will follow this custom. Flowers will normally be provided by the director and may be taken from the casket flower arrangement.
After the funeral, family and friends normally visit the home or a reception for drinks and food. At this time, people can be more relaxed and refreshed. They will talk about the life of the deceased and the memories they will take with them. For more information on the Catholic Funeral Service and Customs

Sending Flowers to a Roman Catholic Funeral

Sending flowers to the family home, funeral home or church services are all acceptable, unless the family requests charitable donations. You can check the obituaries or by speaking with family members.

Jewish Funeral Customs

The Jewish tradition of burial is known as Shiva. Most traditional Jewish funerals take place the day following the death or within 48 hours to allow family suffiecient time to travel and the rituals known as 'Shiva' continue 7 days after the funeral itself. During this time friends and family come to home and mourn and offer their respects to the family. The mourners will generally stay at home whilst people come to pay their respects. Visitors will make a Shiva call to the family home, this is seen as a way of paying your respects and condolences. The Shiva call should be timed around prayer services so you do not interrupt a prayer. Arriving before the prayer begins is ideal and for those who are unfamiliar with the rituals it's best to sit back and follow from those who are partaking. The services for a Jewish funeral are generally closed casket and they are held by a rabbi who will say a short reflective sermon. Wearing black to the service or home is not entirely mandatory but dark clothes should be worn and there should be no open toes shoes, shorts or casual clothing.

Sending Gifts and Flowers for a Jewish Funeral or Shiva

Jewish people believe that flowers are part of the cycle of life and ending a flowers life for the purpose of floral arrangements for a funeral would not be right. Generally, the family will accept gift hampers, such as fruit baskets, meat platters and donations. The fruit hampers will be made available to family members and those visiting during the week and offer a lending hand for the family. The fruit hamper should be delivered to the family home where the Shiva is being held.

Buddhist Funeral Service

Buddhist funeral services can vary greatly depending on which country the deceased is from. It's a religion that spans across the globe from Japan, across to Thailand and even seen in many western countries. It's customary to leave the body without embalming for up to 4 days after the death has occurred. Leaving the body undisturbed is part of the funeral ceremony. In Buddhism, death is a major occasion that will see the person reborn into existence as something better that the previous life. The funeral ceremonies are normally quite simple and people are requested to dress in black casual but neat clothing during a service or Wake. A Buddhist Monk will prepare the sermon and deliver the rites to the deceased but a close family member may also do this. Guests and family members may also chant during the service. See our information page on Buddhist Funeral Services if you would like to learn more.

Sending Flowers to a Buddhist Funeral Service of Family's Home

Sending white flowers to a funeral service or home is acceptable in the Buddhist faith. Neutral toned flowers are also suitable for a lady or gentleman's funeral service. Floral wreaths are customary and can be made in colours including whites, pastels, and yellows.

Indian/Hindu Funeral Customs

Being such a geographically dispersed country the Hindu customs for burial can vary between places, but generally follow similar rituals. Hindus believe that the physical body dies, but the soul never really has a start or end, but merely transcends onto others and continues to live on depending on ones karma. A most common practice for Hindus is to cremate the body, collect the ashes and on the 4th day disperse the ashes in a sacred body of water or some place of significant importance the deceased. The body will remain at the home until it is cremated which is normally 24 hours after death. The casket is open for all mourners to view quietly and you are expected to wear white casual clothing. During the service the priest or eldest on will preside at the service and will conduct hymns and prayers.

Sending Flowers for a Hindu Funeral

There are many flowers placed on the body and you can also send flowers to the family or funeral home prior to the service. Flowers are not generally brought to the funeral, so we would advise to send sympathy flowers to the home. Ten days after the funeral service is held a ceremony is held at the home in which guests are expected to bring fruit hampers.