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Sympathy Flowers Etiquette

It Is Never Too Late to Send Sympathy Flowers

Some people choose to send flowers a week or so after the funeral when the initial chaos has passed. However, it can be a nice gesture to send sympathy flowers to the family’s home after the funeral to remind the bereaved that you have not forgotten about them or their loss. Also, even if a few weeks have passed since the death, flowers are a comforting reminder that friends are still thinking of the family throughout the grieving process.

What Sympathy Flowers to Send to the Family?

A plant, sympathy food basket or small to mid-sized sympathy arrangement are typically sent to the home of the surviving family members. In some cases, particularly in Jewish cultures, a fruit or gourmet basket is greatly appreciated by a family who is receiving out-of-town guests during the mourning period. This type of gift delivers your condolences while helping to care for visiting family and friends. Also, take a look at our Suggestions for Writing Card Messages page.

Do Not Send Flowers for a Shiva Call

If the deceased was Jewish, the immediate family will hold a "Shiva" in their home for seven days after the passing. It is customary for friends and coworkers to come by the home and pay their respects to the family. Desserts, fruit and Kosher food baskets are traditionally taken to or sent to the home. Sympathy flowers are not appropriate for a Shiva call.

What Sympathy Flowers Are Reverent and Not Too Showy

When it comes to expressing your condolences in a classic manner, nothing is more elegant than a mix of all-white sympathy flowers. White flowers have long represented humility and reverence.

What Sympathy Arrangements Are Bright and Colorful

A sympathy arrangement doesn't necessarily have to be dark and somber. During this difficult time, you can help remind the family to celebrate the life that was lived. Flowers add fragrance, color, and beauty to an otherwise somber atmosphere and provide a comforting diversion. An arrangement filled with soft colors - pink, yellow and lavender are a lovely reminder of hope and rebirth.

What is the Difference between "Sympathy Flowers” and "Funeral Flowers"

Sympathy flowers are addressed and sent directly to a loved one of the deceased. They are usually smaller floral arrangements that decorate end tables or can be used as a centerpiece in the family home. Funeral flowers serve as a tribute to the deceased at the funeral service. Funeral flowers should never be sent to the home as they are too formal, large and inappropriate for a home or office.