After a friend loses a loved one, it can be a challenge to know how to properly show your love and support. And while no thoughtful sympathy gift can ever fully provide everything your friend needs, there are some things you can do to support their physical, mental, and emotional wellbeing. We have put together a list of 15 of the best unique sympathy gifts to show your love and support no matter the reason. Whether they have lost a child or pregnancy, parent, grandparent, spouse, or friend, one of the unique memorial gifts from the list below are sure to help them feel less alone in this difficult time. While it is special to send a gift immediately after the loss occurs, grieving people appreciate also being remembered during the difficult holiday months (or during Mother’s Day, Father’s Day, Valentine’s Day, etc.) and in the months after the initial outpouring of support starts to fade away.
Lighting a candle in honor of a loved one helps connect you to their memory and honor their life on earth. It is a powerful and unique bereavement gift that they can light anytime they feel the need to honor their loved one. Once the order is placed, we take the custom name that you have submitted with your order and artfully apply it to the candle label. These candles last between 60 to 80 hours and are scented with all natural ingredients and soy wax!
The trauma of grief can make it very hard for someone to care for themselves, which is why we love the idea of sending a nutritious and wholesale meal through Take them a Meal. These meals are shipped frozen, and can be defrosted and cooked as needed, making them perfect for someone who might have a huge influx of meals immediately after the loss, but still need support weeks and months later. This is also a great option for family and friends who live afar and are not able to deliver a home cooked meal. They also have a great meal delivery scheduling program, which is a perfect way to help organize a community who is rallying around someone who has experienced loss.
There is something so special about sending a handwritten card to a loved one who is grieving. I have been a huge fan of LovePop for years – these cards literally open up to show a 3D shape in the middle of the card! This beautiful Sympathy Tree card features a willow tree and a dove, making it an incredibly special memorial gift.
Over the years, we have heard many, many grieving people express that oftentimes, deliveries of fresh flowers were not a favorite gift. It is common for a family to receive multiple orders of flowers within a few days of the funeral, which means that about a week later, all these flowers start to wilt and die at the same time. Unfortunately, cleaning and discarding of dead and decaying flowers can be a harsh reminder of the reality of loss and cause difficulty for the grieving friend.
All of this leads us to absolutely love the idea of sending a beautiful bouquet of dried flowers to a grieving friend from The Sill. These bouquets are handmade, colorful, and beautifully arranged, making them a perfect unique condolence gift. With these beautiful dried flowers, the grieving person can still enjoy the beauty of a natural floral bouquet without the stress of knowing they will have to discard them.
After you lose a loved one, planting a memorial garden in their honor is incredibly powerful, making a custom gift to plant a memorial garden an incredibly unique bereavement gift.
We love our collection of gifts for the garden. We offer a variety of outdoor Wind Chimes, a beautiful all season Memorial Garden Stone, and a custom Butterfly Garden Seed Set that we personalize with their loved one’s name. The personalized butterfly garden seed set includes seeds that grow a variety of flowers to attract and keep butterflies, making it a truly unique memorial gift idea!
Act of Service
Depending on how well you know the person who is grieving, giving an act of service can be an incredibly meaningful and supportive gift. A few ideas of meaningful acts of service include cutting grass, doing yard work, folding laundry, driving children to and from school, filling up their car with gas, picking up their groceries, or helping with funeral planning. We love this idea because it can fit any budget and provide tangible relief for your friend.
The symbol of an angel holds a special place for many people after they lose a loved one. And while this iconography does not fit every person, depending on their faith background, it can be a special and unique sympathy gift for the loss of a loved one. We love this Angel Plaque by Mudpie, for it’s soothing and modern color palette and its use of natural materials. It would definitely become a treasured piece for a grieving person!
This might be one of my favorite ideas of how to support a grieving friend, because I know firsthand how housework can quickly get out of control during times of trauma and stress. There are a few great national cleaning chains that exist, where you can schedule a cleaning for a friend, or send them a gift certificate to have their house cleaned. Molly Maids is renowned for their excellent customer service, which is important if you are sending a cleaning service as a gift. Merry Maids is another cleaning service that can help you get a cleaning for your friend scheduled easily.
Without a doubt, the In Memory is our favorite unique sympathy gift for a bereaved friend. The In Memory Feather Ornament features a beautiful hand carved white feather – a deeply symbolic and sacred symbol of everlasting connection. Each ornament is hand carved from the mother of pearl of an abalone shell and measures approximately 4." They can be personalized with a white and gold enamel initial charm or your personal name on a gold charm.
A luxurious bath gift can be just the ticket for someone who needs a reminder to care for themselves during grief. These mineral-infused bath fizzies are a unique bereavement gift that instantly destress and decompress the body. Not only that, but this product is made in partnership with Musee and The Honest Company, a company that makes clean, sustainable, and well designed products that work! It also features a Calming Myrrh scent made with responsibly sourced patchouli oil.
Gift card for a spa day
This is a great idea for a gift to give 3 to 6 months after the loss occurs, as a spa day might not be super appealing for a person who has just experienced a huge trauma. After a few months, however, the physical manifestation of grief can become more intense, and a spa day or a massage can be a healing experience for your friend!
A piece of timeless memorial and grief jewelry can become a treasured gift of hope, strength, and support. Our unique collection of commemorative jewelry is exclusively designed to care for a woman’s heart and soul after loss. We love our Custom Handwriting Necklace for someone who has lost a parent, and our Custom Footprint or Handprint Necklace for someone who has lost a child. The other gifts in our remembrance jewelry collection are also designed to be personal and meaningful.
When I was going through a really hard time, a friend sent me a DoorDash gift card, and I was SHOCKED by how much I loved it. Not only could I get affordable food delivered quickly to my home whenever I wanted, they also offer pickup from local drugstores. Being able to quickly get medicine or personal necessities delivered straight to your door within 30 minutes was tremendously helpful, and I now send this as a gift to anyone who is going through something difficult!
Creating a custom photo book for someone who has lost a loved one is an incredibly meaningful way to show you care. If you need an idea on how to collect special photos, we suggest creating a shared photo drive and emailing all the family members to upload their photos to the drive. Once the photos are uploaded, you can go to work creating a special condolence gift that they will treasure forever.
A custom star map from the Night Sky is a super unique and personal way to show your support. Each order from the Night Sky is a custom star map from a meaningful day in the life of the person who has passed away. If you are sending a gift to someone who has lost a spouse, we recommend sending a star map of their wedding day. If you are sending it to someone who lost a child, we love the idea of sending a star map of the day their child was born. No matter what date you choose, this gift is so unique and shows you are thinking of them.
We hope that these ideas of unique and thoughtful bereavement gifts help you as you support a grieving friend or acknowledge a loved one who you are missing. Our unique memorial gifts are perfect for anyone who has lost a child or pregnancy, parent, grandparent, spouse, or friend!