2
Jul
2013
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Roses as sympathy flowers

Tips for Selecting Sympathy Flowers

In the midst of a loved one’s passing, one longs for the outpouring of love from family, friends, and acquaintances in a season of such painful loss. As one grieves alongside those who are left behind, how does one express “I am sorry for your loss” in a tangible way? Express it with sympathy flowers – a gift from a heart that understands, a depiction of a beautiful life that would be dearly missed.

What are sympathy flowers?

Sympathy flowers are also known as funeral flowers or compassionate flowers. Technically funeral flowers are given in funeral parlours or churches during the wake, while sympathy or compassionate flowers are given to the bereaved’s home or office among others.

Why should I give flowers instead of other tokens?

Since practicality is a premium amongst many, it is convenient to think that it must also apply to extending condolences. Many would argue that money is a better gift since it is practical. However, money does not convey the message “I care deeply” as effectively as compassionate flowers do. Flowers are therapeutic for those who are grieving, since it reminds them of life and hope.

Which kinds of flowers are appropriate?

Although there is no right or wrong flower to give, different flowers carry different meanings. Many would give the favorite flower of the deceased, or the flower that reflects his or her personality and character.

Each flower is known to have a special meaning. Roses stand for unity and love, lily for devotion and sympathy, chrysanthemum for truth and honesty, snowdrop for hope, carnation for faithfulness and emotional strength, baby’s breath flower for innocence, daisy for purity and faith, orchid for refined beauty, tulip and jasmine for eternal love, and iris for warmth and hope.

While sympathy flowers are not limited to a few kinds, traditionally, roses, carnations, lilies, iris’s, chrysanthemums and the baby’s breath flowers are a popular choice given to extend condolences.

Which flower colors are acceptable to give?

White-colored flowers are popular selections for compassionate flowers. However, it is not limited to only this color, one may want to choose the deceased’s favorite color, or those that epitomize him or her.

How should the flowers be arranged?

There are a number of ways which sympathy flowers can be arranged.

Circular floral arrangements can be created using floral foam wreath rings or styrofoam wreath rings. This, like its variant cross or heart arrangement, is given by friends and family.

Wreath Tribute
Wreaths are the most known tribute and can be traditional or more contemporary. (Image courtesy of Smithers Oasis)
Cross tributes can be laid on the coffin or standing on the headstones.
Cross tributes can be laid on the coffin or standing on the headstones. (Image courtesy of Smithers Oasis)
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Express your love and compassion with a heart tribute. (Image courtesy of Smithers Oasis)

Casket sprays are the ones lain on top of the casket whether spread entirely on it or  partly covering the lid. This arrangement is usually given by immediate family members.

Standing sprays are arranged in which only one side is studded with flowers. The flowers are supported by an easel and can be given by anyone.

Floral baskets are flowers placed in personalised vessels, and are also given by anyone. These are usually positioned on the floor, surrounding the casket.

A gift that embraces

One might be concerned with the etiquette of one’s sympathy flowers, thus abandoning the idea of giving flowers, and instead replacing it with a “safe” sympathy token. However, its correctness comes second to the significance – both to the giver and the receiver – of sympathy flowers.

Remember that sharing a gift that reminds those who are cocooned in pain of love, joy and hope is priceless. Indeed, the unsheathed extravagant beauty of sympathy flowers offers a warm embrace that comforts and breathes life. Send flowersto the home if one does not wish to receive flowers at the church.

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