Coffins designed and decorated

by | Apr 8, 2020

We can illustrate our love in many different ways. It isn’t about spending huge amounts of money.

For a family to gather around the bedside of a loved one who is nearing the end of their life can be a beautiful and healing occasion, looking at photographs, sharing memories, laughing and crying together, reading poetry and listening to music.

Photographs, messages, labels from the deceased favourite wine and much, much more can be attached to a cardboard coffin using water-based glue, add children’s hand and pets paw prints; your imagination is the only limitation!

Panoramic View

This coffin was designed for a weary traveller. Fascinated by panoramic views, she planned one day to make a patchwork quilt to reflect the beautiful countryside, but never got around to it. Ordered pre-need, this cardboard coffin provided the perfect canvas for a collage.

Using her collection of fabrics and water-based glue I set to work turning brown corduroy into ploughed fields, gold felt into fields of corn and green towelling became lush meadows.

Hedgerows are depicted using fluffy wool, felt animals decorate the fields and woollen balls represent solitary trees.

Patchwork Denim

However tatty and frayed, he always wore jeans. This cardboard coffin reflects the personality of the person whose family ordered it.

Covered with a patchwork of denim, the pieces are cut or torn into various shapes and attached using water-based glue.

Pockets and belt loops provide ideal places for mourners to slip notes, photographs and flowers. Buttons, labels and any other interesting features were used to cover blemishes or where something didn’t quite fit!

Birds and Blossom

This cardboard coffin was being used as a shop window display when it was chosen by a family whose loved one was passionate about birds.

Painted in acrylics by Joanna Martin, it is embellished with delicate sprays of pear blossom and bird collages. The birds have been re-created using feathers collected while out dog walking, plus the addition of a few exotic extras.

The feathers are mounted on bird-shaped card using water-based glue and attached to the coffin with cardboard blocks, so they stand proud.

Family Affair

Mary’s eight great grandchildren, whose ages ranged between three and eighteen, provided the beautiful artwork that decorated her cardboard coffin.

Nine-year-old Sam’s painting depicted a smiling person waving goodbye with the caption ‘I hope you are happy in heaven Great Gran.’ A collection of photographs that told the story of her life gave the finishing touches.

The coffin was then sprayed lightly with varnish in case of rain on the day. Mary was sent her way wearing her best dress and snuggled into a duvet with a tangle of knitting wool to keep her fingers busy.

The Seafarer

This cardboard coffin has been designed for a seafarer. A blue base paint has been applied and a sea scape painted in acrylics onto this cardboard coffin with lots of glitter added to depict the sea spray.

Tiny boats cut from scraps of coloured paper are made individually and mounted directly onto the sides using water-based glue. The paper clouds offer an ideal place for people to write messages.