Your Choices

What to Wear?

Funerals are respectful occasions, and part of being respectful is dressing appropriately. What is considered suitable dress for mourning varies by country and culture. Though black is traditional for a funeral in Western cultures, there are other options that are just as acceptable today, depending on how well you knew the person.

Black, navy, gray or other dark colours usually appear more conservative. Revealing clothes are not appropriate, as some churches prefer shoulders and knees to remain covered.


Findings from a recent survey revealed that the growing contemporary trends in England and Wales for playing contemporary, popular music at funerals, as opposed to traditional hymns was not being reflected in Scotland to the same degree. In fact the opposite was true, where the percentage of funeral services involving hymn singing actually increased from 54% to 56% for all Scottish funerals. These figures contrast with a decrease from 41% to 35% of the number of funerals in England and Wales having hymns and religious music as part of the ceremony.

Many people ask for specific pieces of music to be played during the service. This is an opportunity to add a personal touch. The music chosen can usually be anything from traditional organ music, and/or a choir to music on a CD. Certain crematoria have a facility to download music and hymns which we can arrange for you. Alternatively you may like to have a musician playing at the service. Depending on the location of the service, there may be certain restrictions. We will be happy to give you advice on this.

Choice of Music

You can basically have any type of music you want at a funeral. You can have a mixture of traditional hymns and non-religious music.

Live Music

In church you can decide to have a choir and/or an organist and pay the church direct for the privilege.

You may prefer to have for instance a piper or harpist play for you at the service.


A friend or relative may wish to say a few words during the service in tribute to the person who has died; this is called a eulogy.

You can prepare this yourself and there are many websites that can help you compile one. If you prefer not to do it yourself you can ask the minister or officiate to do it on your behalf.

Poems and Readings

Funeral poems and readings can express our innermost thoughts and feelings at a time when the right words can be hard to find. You may wish to include one of these in your order of service. You can recite something dear or affiliated to the person who has passed away or alternatively there are many websites you can go to for inspiration.