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Memorial jewellery is a way of commemorating someone who’s passed away. It can be a specially designed pendant, ring, or bracelet that helps you keep a loved one close. It’s a symbolic gesture that brings the wearer comfort. Memorial jewellery is also known as mourning jewellery or remembrance jewellery.

Where does memorial jewellery come from?

Memorial jewellery has been worn since ancient times but it became popular in the Victorian period. This is because after Queen Victoria’s husband, Prince Albert, died, she wore all black for years afterwards. She also wore black jewellery. This type of mourning jewellery became popular and continues to have its place today.

Different types of memorial jewellery

Even though it became popular in the 1800s memorial jewellery has changed. It can now look like any other piece of jewellery you might wear. It can be made in many ways with different materials. But the design takes a lot of thought because it means a lot to the wearer.

Here are the different types of memorial jewellery you might come across. It may help you choose a ring, pendant or bracelet that helps you remember a loved one.

Memorial jewellery for ashes

Also known as cremation jewellery, this is usually made with a small amount of the person’s ashes embedded in it. It can be put into rings, pendants, bracelets and cuff links. And it can be incorporated into the jewellery in different ways. For example, it can be set in resin or glass. It can be placed in a small chamber that’s set in the jewellery. Or it can be heated to make a memorial diamond. Speak to the jewellery designer about what you’d like. They’ll work with you so you can create a design that’s right for you.

Memorial jewellery with hair

If you’d like, a lock of hair can be included in jewellery too. It can be set in resin or glass, or it can be kept inside a chamber that’s featured on the piece of jewellery. It’s a keepsake that’ll help keep your loved one close.

Engraved memorial jewellery

Another way of remembering a loved one with jewellery is to have a piece engraved. Here are a few ideas that might be suitable:

  • Their initials
  • Their date of birth and death
  • Their favourite quote or lyrics
  • Their own handwriting that was left behind on a letter or notebook
  • Their signature

Fingerprint memorial jewellery

A completely bespoke memorial jewellery piece can also be made with your loved one’s fingerprint. The jeweller will usually ask the funeral director to get the fingerprints and the jewellery will then have an exact print to work with. They’ll incorporate the fingerprint into the design leaving you with piece of memorial jewellery that’s completely unique.

Looking for other ways to commemorate someone?

Our guides can help you choose a memorial or keepsake that's right for you.