How to Make a Grave Blanket

A grave blanket is a specialized floral arrangement common in winter.
A grave blanket is a specialized floral arrangement common in winter. (Image: http://farm1.static.flickr.com/39/78595379_97a77b6475.jpg?v=0)

If you live in a state where it snows and gets cold during the winter months, a special way to decorate a loved one's grave is with a grave blanket. Many flower shops and other specialty stores offer grave blankets to customers, and they will even make them according to your specifications. For an extra fee, they will deliver them right to the grave for you. However, some people feel it adds a personal touch if they make and deliver them personally.

Things You'll Need

  • 1-by-2 boards cut in 4-foot lengths
  • Block of florist's foam, 2 feet long and 4 by 4 inches
  • Chicken wire
  • Needle-nose pliers
  • Wire
  • Fresh evergreens
  • 16d nails

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Cut all of your supplies to the correct length. Your boards should be 4 feet long. Your blocks of foam should be about 2 feet in length. Cut your chicken wire to a length that is just a few inches shorter than your foam. This is just for added support, so the length isn't extremely important.

Lay the foam on a table. Place the board on top of the foam so the Styrofoam is centered on the board. Try to get it as centered as possible, but a couple inches either way isn't going to make a big difference.

Put a nail through each end of the board so it also goes through the foam. Angle the nails inward toward each other, so they grip the foam better.

Wrap the chicken wire around the foam. Pull the sides so they touch the edges of the board. Put one end of the wire through the hole on one end of the chicken wire. Twist it so it is secure. Poke the wire through the corresponding hole on the other side of the chicken wire. Continue moving along the board putting the wire through every fourth or fifth hole in the chicken wire. When you've reached the other end, the wire should make a zigzag formation along the board.

Check the foam to make sure it is secured on the board. If it moves too much, the entire thing will slide off once you lift it up.

Start inserting the fresh evergreens into the foam. Break the branches as necessary and use the fuller tips of the branches around the bottom layer. The bottom layer should measure about 6 feet long and 4 feet wide. Keep putting branches in as you make layers from the bottom to the top.

Fill in any bare spots or holes around the blanket with more branches. On the top, use shorter branches so it isn't too high.

Decorate according to your own style and preferences. Some people choose to put silk flowers in their grave blankets; others prefer Christmas or holiday ornaments.

Deliver your blanket to your loved one's grave. Most grave blankets will fit in the trunk or backseat of your car.

Tips & Warnings

  • Try to use the fuller branches from the evergreens. This creates a fuller-looking blanket and reduces the weight for when it's time to deliver it to its resting place.
  • If it's available, throw some snow on top of your grave blanket once you get it to the grave site. This will help weigh it down and freeze it to the ground, keeping it from blowing away in high winds.
  • If you are only going to make one grave blanket, consider hiring a flower shop to do it for you. By the time you buy all the supplies to make one, it's more expensive than buying one from a place that makes dozens or even hundreds of these each year. You can still add that personal touch by delivering it yourself.
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