The death of a baby is a heart-wrenching experience, and your expression of sympathy should be thoughtfully considered. Like any funeral, a baby's funeral offers consolation to those suffering a deep loss. Religious beliefs and cultural backgrounds often determine how a family approaches bereavement. In general, funeral flower arrangements for babies are smaller than those designed for an adult's funeral or memorial. If you are concerned about the appropriateness of your selection, seek advice from your florist.
Hearts and Crosses
Floral hearts and crosses are generally reserved as sympathy expressions for the immediate family. Grandparents and aunts and uncles should discuss this with the baby's parents to be certain they are comfortable with the gesture. In most instances, offerings from immediate family are placed adjacent to the casket or, at times, crib, and are designed to coordinate with the floral spray the parents have selected. Often, a family will use one florist for all their floral arrangements.
A symbol of eternal life, a circular wreath, may be a thoughtful keepsake for parents. A grapevine wreath embellished with colourful, small spring silk flowers may provide comforting memories once the baby's parents have come to terms with their loss. How well you know the parents will help guide you in determining whether or not this is an appropriate gesture.
Memorial stones, small bird baths, cherubs and angels designed to accent a garden are often worked into funeral arrangements given by close friends and family. They serve as gentle reminders of the baby they have lost and are often deeply appreciated as parents return to the routines of daily life.
Floral Arrangements with Stuffed Toys
If a baby spent considerable time in the hospital, many parents have floral arrangements from the funeral sent to the paediatric ward. While the sight of a stuffed toy may bring tears to the parents' eyes, they are often very welcome by hospitals working without funds to provide entertainment to paediatric patients. Some parents specify their intention to donate floral arrangements within the death notice.
Vase and Basket Arrangements
White symbolises purity and innocence. In funeral arrangements: white lilies are for innocence; white stargazer lilies express sympathy; white roses stand for innocence and youthfulness; white carnations mean pure love and innocence. White flowers are always appropriate for babies. At the same time, all pastel combinations and bright crayon-colour flowers are equally suitable.