How to Memorialize Loved Ones Through Your Style

author/source: Derrianne Parker

Photo Courtesy of Ged Lawson  When you think of the words “death” and “fashion,” for most people, what immediately comes to mind is mourning attire for funerals or what the Victorians do- which is wearing black for months or years on end. While sure, black is still the main go-to color for funerals, this isn’t the only way to show your sorrow and your grief for a loved one.

Honestly, it doesn’t even need to be a loved one like a friend or family member; maybe it’s a celebrity, musician, fashion icon, or whoever you like really. But wearing black for days on end isn’t the only way to show memory through your style. Honestly, there are a lot of different ways nowadays to commemorate someone and show that you’ll always remember them and the impact they made on your life. So, here’s exactly what you can do to memorialize loved ones strictly through your style.

Custom Memorial Apparel

Photo Courtesy of Amanda VickAlright, so to a degree, this could be seen as something cheesy or maybe even over the top; it’s going to really be up to you and what you think. These are fairly common when it comes to celebrities, heroes, or even family members who are trying to cover funeral costs. So this could be something that you could put into consideration. 

This could include custom-printed T-shirts, hoodies, or even jackets featuring images, quotes, or symbols that hold special meaning. All you really need to do is collaborate with a local print shop or online custom apparel service to bring your design to life. This doesn’t even need to be too out there either, like having the person's name, face, date, or anything like that. It could be art, it could be a cute design, really whatever you want that’s going to remind you of them. So you can be as forward or as subtle as you want.

Wear Their Clothes

One of the best ways to heal from the death of a loved one is by having something that belonged to them. If they had similar tastes in clothing to you, then this could be really fun. Actually, this is fairly common, especially if you have an aunt, uncle, grandparent, parent, or sibling who passed away. If you wear the same size or something similar, then that’s bonus points! Wearing their clothes, not just their style but the actual clothes they owned and wore, felt like an enlightening experience.

For the most part, these are going to be vintage clothes; they’re going to be unique, and you’re always going to think of them immediately when seeing or wearing the article. So this can be super special, and it’s usually common for special occasions to do this such as wearing your mom’s wedding dress or a cute dress suit your grandma owned. So, just take this into consideration.

Repurpose Clothing

To a degree, this can piggyback on what was said above. Transforming a loved one's clothing into something new allows you to carry their essence with you- especially if you don’t share their taste. You can repurpose fabric from their favorite garments into accessories like scarves, hats, or even jewelry. This preserves the fabric and provides a tangible connection to the person's style and presence. Besides, it’s eco-friendly.

Photo Courtesy of Laura ChouetteEmbroidered Memories

If you’re into a more rustic or cottagecore aesthetic, then this is for you! Embroidery is a timeless and intricate art form that can be used to memorialize someone through fashion. So, you might want to consider adding small embroidered details to clothing, such as a loved one's initials, significant dates, or meaningful symbols. This subtle touch creates a personalized and enduring tribute.

Go with Jewelry

Usually, after someone’s death, if they had jewelry, it usually gets passed on down to family members. So easily, you could just style and wear the jewelry with what you currently own, simple, right? Whatever they have that you love, you know you’re always thinking of them when you wear the jewelry. But something else you could do, another way to feel extra close is by having cremation jewelry made, so then, you could either display it (kind of like an urn) or even wear it if you'd like.

Consider a Quilt

So, how does a quilt actually relate to fashion? Well, this isn’t something you’re going to wear, of course, but instead, this is going to be a quilt made from their clothes. As mentioned earlier, it’s a nice idea to repurpose some of their clothes, and this is a pretty nice one, too.

Plus, one thing to keep in mind is that quilts have long been used to tell stories and preserve memories throughout all sorts of cultures all over the world. So, you might want to collect clothing items that hold sentimental value, like shirts, ties, or dresses, and repurpose them into a memorial quilt. Each square can represent a different aspect of the person's life, creating a beautiful tapestry of memories.

Photo Courtesy of UnsplashDid They Have a Signature Fragrance?

Fragrance and fashion go hand in hand, even makeup and fashion. So, did this loved one have a signature fragrance? Maybe a certain cologne or perfume they always wore and will always make you think of them? For instance, did you have a grandma that always wore Chanel no 5? You don’t need to wear it, but instead, you can apply the fragrance to fabric, such as scarves or handkerchiefs, creating a wearable reminder of their unique scent.

Create a Symbolic Capsule Wardrobe

Why not consider curating a wardrobe capsule inspired by your loved one's style? You might want to go ahead and select key pieces that reflect their fashion preferences, colors they loved, or even iconic accessories they often wore. This capsule can be rotated through the seasons, allowing you to wear pieces that carry the essence of your loved one throughout the year.

Incorporate Parts of Their Style

Last but certainly not least, why not incorporate their style? It’s similar to the above, but not quite the same. It’s more about incorporating bits and pieces of their style into yours. For instance, if they loved trench coats, you’d wear one that’s your style. If they love heels, you’d pick one that’s more your style; it’s subtle things like that. It’s their style, but you’re making it mostly your own, so it’s like a small piece of remembrance.