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If you’ve read a trade journal or visited a funeral convention lately you’ve probably seen Memorial Candles available at several price points. 

If you aren’t using these by now you should start today.  No, you should start yesterday! 

Several companies are offering these customizable candles.  Most cost around $12 to $40 a candle, but you’ll still have to do the customization.  And while the ones available commercially are nice quality and simple to use, I’m going to show you how to make your own on a Shoestring budget.

Purchase a case of candles from the Root Candle Company (ask to speak with Lorie).  These clear candles are special as they are thick walled so as not to melt the label we will use later. 

Next, purchase Avery Sticker Project Paper Labels from any office store or big box store.  All that’s left is your creativity use any program such as MS Word, MS Publisher or any of the other programs available.  I prefer The Print Shop 21 to create label for my funeral home.

I used to merge a background with the deceased picture in front but recently I have been just using photos of the deceased to create the entire label.  Once your creation is finished, print the label out on your color inkjet printer and attach to the candle. 

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I also add a small clear mailing label to the back that has the funeral home name and address on it, in case anyone forgets where they purchased the candle and to encourage reorders. 

Typically I set the first free candle on the register stand and light it during visitation.  I sell extra candles to the family for $10 a piece. 

After all costs, the Shoestring budget candle costs less than half what some companies are charging and everything is done in house, which I like. If you have any questions or would like me to forward you some templates feel free to contact me. 



chandler.jpgBryan Chandler is the owner/operator of Chandler Funeral Home and Cremation Service in Caldwell, Ohio.  One of the “new breed” of funeral providers, Bryan serves up practical advice, gives away Shoestring Budget tips and offers simple advice for funeral directors on his blog at Chandler’s Corner.  Bryan can be reached at 740-732-1311.