Turn Cremation Ashes into Glass Candle Keepsakes
By Ira Woods
Rituals aren't my thing. Yet, with the passing of my spouse I found myself lighting a candle for her every night for an entire year. I bought votive candles, complex wax candles on sale at various shops, and artistic looking candles sold by hawkers on the street. Burning through the candles one a day, I was near manic making sure I’d never be without one. They were stashed all throughout the house.
My little ritual involved placing a lit candle next to Kris's photo, along with a small keepsake I had fashioned out of a black, brightly speckled trinket box she liked. Inside was a sprinkling of her ashes.
I can't say exactly why I did this each evening, nor did I think much about it, but in retrospect I can see that I was trying to connect with her. It was my way of saying, “Hello love! I hope you can sense that I’m still thinking of you. That I still miss you.” I went through many candles and had to scrape off great globs of wax, but the ritual never failed to make me feel complete for the day.
Last year I met a glass artist who does magnificent work; I immediately decided that we were meant to collaborate. One of his pieces was a hand blown glass candle that uses oil and a wick instead of wax. I immediately fell in love with it and put it up on the OneWorld Memorials site-a hat tip towards my glass votive candles, an integral part of my own healing process. These candles eliminated the mess of wax and incorporated beautiful swirling colors that could be customized to the buyer’s preference.
The artisan makes a variety of blown glass keepsakes, each unique and beautiful in its own way. Because the candles are handmade, no two designs are ever exactly alike, just like no two people are ever exactly alike. But there's something about these glass votive candles. Lighting a candle to commemorate a dear one's passing is a universal expression of honoring love and loss. Perhaps it illuminates both. This combination of love, loss and remembrance inspired us to take the candle a step further.
Cremation Ash Candles
When I discovered that our glass artist also incorporates cremation ashes into glass artwork, I was so excited with this unique combination that I jumped at the chance to make them available to our customers. What an amazing way to honor a loved one and to keep their memory alive.
Remember my hoard of candles next to the decorative box holding a pinch of ashes? The blown glass candle incorporates the flame and the ash keepsake into one. Had this existed then, I could have supplied the artisan with the ashes. He would have carefully folded the cremation ashes into glass masterpieces. Blown glass candles made with cremation ashes have an enhanced beauty, with the unique swirls of ashes being visible when lit. A divine spark burning with our longing to connect, while part of the one we’re connecting to is in the very vessel being used to manifest the light.
Glass candles with cremation ashes built in are just one of the unique designs being offered in our new collection. In addition to the oil candles, other keepsake styles that feature hand blown glass with ashes folded in include paper weights, glass hearts and brilliant glass spheres. But what makes this product line so unique is that it gives people the opportunity to grieve their loss by tapping into their creativity. What could be more meaningful than having a hand in designing a unique, customized tribute to the memory of your loved one?
Ordering is simple:
- Choose the design and color
- A kit will be sent to collect a nominal amount of cremation ash
- The kit is sent back to the artist
- In approximately 4 weeks the glass artwork, with embedded ash, is sent to the customer.
Here's a link to the entire collection: Ashes into Glass Keepsakes
Ira Woods is the founder of OneWorld Memorials. He had become the primary caregiver for his spouse who discovered she had cancer in 2009. His experience caregiving and then losing someone he deeply loved caused him to reach out and encourage others to prepare for this eventuality through writing and speaking engagements.