New Caskets and Urns at 2015 ICCFA Expo

Apr 17, 2015 | 0 comments

At the 2015 ICCFA expo in San Antonio, I saw numerous new casket and urn choices on display. Along with new players displaying their wares, long-established companies also offered fresh products. Here’s a quick run-down of new items your faithful correspondent discovered.

Aurora Homestead casket

Aurora Homestead casket


Aurora featured a new casket model called Homestead, made of poplar with a distressed wood finish. The look was inspired by an independent manufacturer who created caskets from old barn wood and couldn’t keep them in stock.

The company also offers a keepsake box with a matching distressed wood finish. The box allows family to hold on to items that might otherwise be buried with the deceased. Aurora also offers new personalization options for inside panels that can be tucked into the pleats of the lid or adhered onto the inner edges.

Aurora also offers the free membership site, an online repository for stories, pictures and messages to live on – even after you leave this life.

Cherokee Child Caskets

Cherokee dual color casket

Cherokee dual color casket

Even funeral directors have a hard time with caskets made for children. Mike Mims, President of Cherokee Caskets, has seen funeral directors at expos deliberately detour to another aisle to avoid passing by his booth. “I don’t take it personally,” Mims said. “Their job is much, much harder than ours.”

The 74-year-old company sells more than 10,000 variations of caskets sized for infants up to youngsters in their tweens. This year, Cherokee Caskets showed a new dual-colored brushed finish on steel.

“The death of a child is out of the natural order. Children deserve as nice a casket as adults, if not nicer,” Mims added. He and his wife know from their own experience, after they had a baby that was stillborn.

Passages International

Passages engraved biodegradable urn

Passages engraved biodegradable urn

Even eco-friendly burial products can be personalized. Darren Crouch, President of Passages International, showed how they can laser etch most of their products in-house, with names, dates, phrases, artwork and other personalized details.

The company also debuted a new six-sided wicker coffin and a memorial tree program.

“People at green shows keep asking me, ‘How do I turn myself into a tree?’” said Crouch.

Passages provides a certificate to the funeral home, which in turn gives the certificate to families who buy Passages caskets. The family sends the certificate to Passages, and in return receives an evergreen tree seedling appropriate to the climate zone in which they live.

Andy Brown with LifeArt

Andy Brown with LifeArt

LifeArt Caskets added matching cremated remains keepsake boxes to their line of customizable recycled wood fiber caskets. Andy Brown, Director of Sales, shows a matching casket and ash container in a camouflage pattern – perfect for the hunter in your life!

LifeArt creates memorable, environmentally friendly caskets for cremation and burial. They offer an Online Casket Designer that allows families to be expressive and celebratory while designing an individualized casket. Their caskets are made of 97% recycled wood fibers that generate 60% fewer emissions in the cremation process than particleboard or timber caskets.

Here are snapshots from other exhibitors at the 2015 ICCFA convention & expo:

Terrybear Urns & Memorials offered brass pouncing cat urns in four different colors.

Terrybear pouncing cat urns

Terrybear pouncing cat urns

Life Chest introduced a prototype cigar and whiskey box to support all veteran groups through the Hometown Heroes program. It’s a limited edition box that includes spaces for challenge coins that are popular in the military.

Life Chest's cigar and whiskey box

Life Chest’s cigar and whiskey box

Albuquerque-based John Berger Hardwood Containers now offers to personalize urns with inlay or etching.

John Berger Hardwood Containers

John Berger makes handmade hardwood urns

R&S Designs makes memorial urns from stone and marble. This style is called Kingdom.

R&S Designs' "Kingdom" urn

R&S Designs’ “Kingdom” urn

Love Urns BlessingBirdsLove Urns’ latest urn style is Blessing Birds, enamel on metal in a variety of sizes.

For more coverage of interesting new products at this year’s ICCFA expo, visit The Family Plot Blog’s Tools of the Trade category.

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