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Flower Etiquette 101: Knowing the Right Way to Send Condolences

Posted on 10 May 2016

Facing a death is always difficult and depending on your relationship with the deceased, you may want to express your condolences to their family on a deeper level. Sending flowers is often one of the first things that come to mind when there has been a loss. But like most other societal norms, there are rules of etiquette that should be followed.

Should you send flowers?

In most cases, sending flowers is perfectly acceptable and often appreciated by the family of the deceased. While they are not mandatory, they are a way for the sender to express their sympathy and love for the deceased and their family. Flowers can bring a sense of warmth and even comfort to such an event.

There are a few basic guidelines to keep in mind. Remember to make sure that the flowers will be arriving at the funeral home before the first visiting hours. It is considered improper etiquette for flowers to arrive during the service.

Also, make sure that the flowers have a card. If you are the sole sender, add a message and your name. If you are part of a large group that is sending flowers, it may be better to sign as a group name, instead of individually. If you do this, be sure to leave the information of one individual so that the family may send thanks.

What should I look for?

Your relationship with the deceased will help you decide what type of flowers to send. It is appropriate for anyone to send floral baskets or living plants. Often, these are sent to a home or work instead of the funeral and are addressed to one specific person.

Larger pieces, like floral wreaths, crosses and sprays, are appropriate to give by anyone who was fairly acquainted with the deceased. This could be from coworkers or closer friends. Lid arrangements should only be given by children, grandchildren or specific family members. If you are not in the immediate family of the deceased, ask before you send any sort of lid arrangement.

When should I not send flowers?

It has become more common for family members of the deceased to ask for a monetary donation to a charity or something similar, instead of flowers. If this is the case, it is still acceptable to give flowers, as long as you honor the family’s wishes as well.

Some religions do not welcome flowers as much as others. If you are unfamiliar with the deceased’s religion, be sure to find out if flowers are welcomed at the service.

If you feel that it is an appropriate gift to give, a pendant or piece of jewelry from Johnston’s Cremation Jewelry would be a much appreciated gesture. Visit our website and browse our catalog or speak to one of our team members directly to find the perfect gift.

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