A memorial brick is an artistic and creative way to honor a departed loved one. You can inscribe a memorial brick to remember any friend or family member. For multiple loved ones, you can even create a legacy brick walkway.
Memorial bricks are entirely customizable, and they can last for decades or even centuries. And they make a beautiful centerpiece for a memorial garden or as a marker for a memorial tree.
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If you want to create a lasting tribute to one or more people you’ve lost, memorial bricks may be a perfect choice. But what exactly should you inscribe on a memorial brick? In this article, we’ll give you some ideas for legacy brick etching, from short inscriptions to beautiful designs.
Below, you’ll find memorial brick engraving and design concepts for friends, family members, a partner or spouse, and anyone you’ve loved and lost.
Tip: If you are the executor for a deceased loved one, it isn't just memorializing them that can cause stress. Handling their unfinished business can be overwhelming without a way to organize your process. We have a post-loss checklist that will help you ensure that your loved one's family, estate, and other affairs are taken care of.
Short Memorial Brick Inscription Ideas
Memorial bricks are the ideal shape and size for a short, lettered inscription. Although specialty engravers may offer various sizes, most memorial bricks are four inches by eight inches. That typically gives you enough space for about three lines of text.
Within those three lines, you can simply inscribe the person’s name, birth date, and death date, creating a unique, lasting remembrance. You might also want to include a few meaningful words or other information about your loved one.
Here, we’ll share some original inscription ideas for a parent, child, dear friend, partner or spouse, or colleague.
Parents play a pivotal role in making you who you are, whether they’re ever-present, more distant, or even estranged. And parents come in many shapes and forms, from biological forebears to adoptive parents and other familial guardians.
If you want to create a meaningful memorial for one parent or more parental figures, consider using one of the lettered inscriptions below.
1. Parental nicknames
Chances are, you didn’t call your mother, father, or guardian by their official name all that often. You probably called them “Mom,” “Dad,” or some variation of those common titles. So instead of, or in addition to, inscribing your parent’s name on their memorial brick, you could inscribe the name you actually called them in life.
2. A favorite joke or piece of wisdom
It’s common for parents to share the same joke over and over again or impart the same piece of wisdom repeatedly. If your parent had a particular phrase, adage, or joke they shared with you all the time, you could inscribe part of it on a memorial brick. For example, if your mother always told you, “Find your passion, and you’ll never work a day in your life,” you could simply inscribe “Find your passion.”
3. A quote about the love of a parent
Alternatively, you might find a quote that accurately describes how you feel about the love you received from your parent. Here are some examples that would work for a memorial brick:
- “Let parents bequeath to their children not riches, but the spirit of reverence.” – Plato
- “A parent’s love is whole no matter how many times divided.” – Robert Brault
- “All that I am, or hope to be, I owe to my mother.” - Abraham Lincoln
- “Behind every young child who believes in himself is a parent who believed first.” – Matthew Jacobson
- “No matter how far we come, our parents are always in us.”– Brad Meltzer
For a child
Losing a child is one of the most painful tragedies you can experience in life. Not a day goes by that you don’t think about your beloved child and every minute you spent with them. You might want to create a memorial brick to express those emotions and ensure a lasting tribute to your child.
A memorial brick is a beautiful way to honor a child. But you might not be sure what to inscribe on a child’s memorial brick. So here are some ideas for lettered inscriptions to get you started.
4. Gone too soon
Many memorial bricks for children include the phrase “gone too soon” or something with similar meaning.
5. Jenny’s garden
You can dedicate a flower bed or garden to your child and engrave the memorial brick with “(Child’s name)’s garden.”
6. Quote for the loss of a child
You might use one of these quotes about the loss of a child for your memorial brick:
- “What an imprint your footprints have left upon our hearts.”
- “Heaven and earth may separate us today, but nothing will ever change the fact that you made me a mom.”
- “I love you every day, and now I will miss you every day.” - Mitch Albom
- “I will hold you safe in my heart forever.”
For a dear friend
The loss of a close friend can be just as difficult as the loss of a family member. So when you experience the death of a beloved friend, you might want to honor them with a memorial brick.
Consider the options we’ve listed below if you need ideas for memorial brick inscriptions for a dear friend.
7. Goodbye message for a friend
A memorial brick can be your opportunity to say one last goodbye. Since you’re probably not in charge of creating a friend’s headstone or grave marker, the memorial brick can be your version of a permanent tribute. Some examples of a goodbye message for a friend include:
- Forever in my heart.
- My best friend forever and always.
- Until we meet again.
8. In loving memory or tribute
Before the inscription of your friend’s name, you can simply add “In loving memory of” or “In tribute to.”
9. A favorite memory
You could also use your memorial brick inscription as an opportunity to set in stone a favorite memory you shared with your friend. Of course, you’ll have to summarize the story to fit on your memorial brick or just include a few words of an inside joke.
For a spouse or partner
A memorial brick is also a unique way to remember and pay respect to a late spouse or partner. It’s a tribute that’s long-lasting, just like your love for that person. And it’s a creative memorial that you can keep at home, unlike a headstone or gravestone.
Below are some creative memorial brick inscriptions for honoring a departed partner or spouse.
10. Your names together
In addition to your spouse’s name, you could add your name to the memorial brick. You can add an image of a heart or rose to the design to signify your love for each other. In this way, a memorial brick has much the same effect as carving your initials into a tree: it’s a near-permanent marker of your loving relationship.
11. Nicknames or terms of endearment
Just as you rarely (if ever) call your parents by their first name, you likely had an alternative name for your spouse or partner. You can include your favorite terms of endearment for your loved one on the memorial brick, either in place of their real name or in addition to it.
12. A quote about marriage or love
One of these quotes about marriage and love might help you to express your feelings in the limited space available on a memorial brick:
- “Side by side or miles apart, we will always be connected by our hearts.”
- “Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.” - Lao Tzu
- “Love is patient, love is kind.” 1 Corinthians
- “We were together. I forget the rest.” - Walt Whitman
For a colleague or boss
When a member of your workplace passes away, whether it’s a colleague or your boss, you might want to give the family a memorial brick as a gift. The workplace might even want to place a memorial brick on the premises somewhere to honor that team member.
If you’re creating a memorial brick for someone you worked with, one of the inscriptions below might be the right fit.
13. Your colleague’s title
Just as you can inscribe the titles of family members, like “Mom,” “Dad,” or “Daughter,” you can inscribe your colleague’s title on their memorial headstone. For example, if you work at a school, your colleague’s title might be “Teacher” or “Coach.” You can add descriptors, making the inscription “Dedicated Teacher” or “Beloved Coach and Best Friend.”
14. Rest in peace
“Rest in peace” is one of the best-known phrases for offering condolences and saying goodbye to someone special. It succinctly shows that you care for the departed and their family. You can inscribe “rest in peace,” “RIP,” or a variation of “rest in peace” on a memorial brick for your colleague or supervisor who passed away.
15. In memory
Another simple message you can add to a memorial brick is a simple “in memory of” message. You can change the wording in various ways while conveying the same sentiment.
Memorial or Legacy Brick Design Ideas
Sometimes an image can say more than words. Along with a lettered inscription, you might want to engrave a memorial brick with a meaningful design. You might even use an image in place of engraved lettering, or you might use two memorial bricks as your memorial--one with an inscription and one with a design.
There are endless design options for memorial bricks, and the design you choose depends on the person you’re memorializing. But below, we’ll list just a few design concepts you might incorporate into a memorial brick for any loved one.
16. Symbolic images
Some popular images for memorial stones and bricks include hearts, butterflies and dragonflies, and religious iconography.
17. Signature or handwriting
If you have a sample of your loved one’s handwriting or signature, a specialty engraver might be able to enlarge the image and transfer it onto a memorial brick.
28. Flowers and foliage
Floral imagery and images of foliage can make perfect design elements for a memorial brick in a garden.
Giving a Memorial Brick
A memorial brick is a great way to honor your own loved one’s legacy, but it can also make a perfect sympathy or condolence gift. If someone in your life is grieving due to a recent death, a death anniversary, or some other occasion that reminds them of their loved one, a memorial brick can express your deepest sympathies and support.
And any of the ideas above can help you make a unique and creative sympathy gift that will last for many years to come.