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How Innovative Urn Designs are Breaking Traditions

While there is a time and place for tradition, in some cases, and for some people, tradition is not always representative of who they are and the life they lead. Whether you are here to seek ideas and information for leaving behind instructions for loved ones or here to seek something different for a loved one you have lost who loved innovative designs and new technology, we may have something here that will inspire you and comfort you on your journey.

Selecting an Urn

We feel it is essential for us to remind all who come here that selecting an urn is a deeply personal experience. In most cases, choosing the suitable urn is not about colors and shapes but about finding one that stops you when you see it, filling you with the emotions that you've found the right one for you or a loved one.

There is no right or wrong way to choose an urn. Should a traditional urn or a modern urn feel right, either choice will be right if it feels right to you.

Traditional Vs. Modern or Contemporary Urns

Traditional urns are shaped, in general, like a vase, a jug-like shape, or a box. Traditional vase or jug-shaped urns are often gently rounded in form and symmetrical, reminiscent of being shaped on a pottery wheel. Box-shaped cremation urns may be created from wood, wood veneers, pressed boards, MDF, granite, marble, or other stone styles. Most traditional urns, no matter the material, come in subdued, monochromatic neutral tones such as beige, pewter, silver, or gray.

Traditional designs are easier to find, as they are kept generalized and close to usual standards. Most people who prefer something elegant and understated turn to traditional urns. While this can be the ideal choice for some, others may find traditional urns lacking the character, personality, or essence of a loved one's life and memory.

In addition to some feeling as if traditional urns simply do not fit, many comment they often mistake a conventional cremation urn for other household décor items, like cookie jars, flower vases, and other storage items.

Contemporary urns embrace color unusual or uncommon designs that can't be summarized or lumped into a single category. Modern urns can be abstract, ornate, minimalist, and more—covering nearly all the bases of many people's needs for a unique urn. You may find themes such as candlelight, colorful and breathtaking ceramic finishes, stained or handblown glass, or even stained-glass-like effects in all shades and dynamic shapes.

This variety leads to providing a wealth of one-of-a-kind, beautiful urns that can be ideal for so many vibrant, unique loved ones.

Alternative Materials

One of the many ways modern urns are breaking away from tradition is by using unusual or alternative materials. Many seek materials that are no longer harmful to the environment and are biodegradable, breaking down naturally over time and allowing remains to return to the earth with little to no impact. These eco-friendly designs are ever expanding as more and more people understand and focus growing emphasis on sustainability and environmental issues.

Another feature that more modern urns can showcase is far more intricate details than ever before, whether within the engravings, the ability to have images of the departed placed on urns, or unique hand-made details custom for the loved one that has passed away.

Innovative Designs Breaking Traditional Trends

New trends in urn designs are rapidly emerging every year, and these trends reflect the changing landscape and preferences around end-of-life and individual desires for a more personalized, innovative option. One of the key emerging trends we are seeing on the market currently is integrating technology in urn design.

Advancements in technology allow for more powerful computing using smaller and smaller components, allowing for urns that go above and beyond the traditional and even some of the more contemporary designs we are used to seeing. A few examples of some of the technologically advanced urns out there currently include:

Bios Incube®

Bios is the company that created the Bios Urn®, one of the world's first biodegradable urns designed to turn a loved one's ashes into a tree. With the Bios Incube®, they have integrated several pieces of technology with stunning contemporary and minimal design.

Unless the original Bios Urn® needs to be planted in an outdoor space due to its biodegradable material, the Bios Incube® is explicitly designed for the Bios Urn® to be planted within the Incube®. In this manner, the urn can be cared for and taken with you or placed in any indoor or outdoor environment, blending seamlessly into any décor. Not only can they be taken with you, but The Bios Inclube® has a 5-gallon capacity and an automatic watering system for caring for the tree urn. It is easy and simple to set up and comes with a cutting-edge sensor that tracks plant growth, and water, calculates the exact amount of water your tree needs, and collects data on air temperature and humidity.


ModUrn was born out of the heartfelt and heartbreaking need for Sonia Vachalec to have a safe place to preserve the sound of her father's voice and collect family memories all in one place. ModUrn provides smart urns for beloved pets and people by merging digital technology with traditional shaped urns showcasing innovative designs. ModUrn has recently partnered to create and offer technologically advanced memorial plaques. These plagues and smart urns can store the voices, videos, images, and stories of loved ones who passed for a thoughtful, intuitive memorial that honors their life and their memory by preserving their precious legacy for years to come.

The world of cremation, urns, jewelry, and more constantly evolves as technology, viewpoints, and attitudes toward end-of-life change. The trends we see today will likely continue to shape the future of urns, and one can expect to find new and innovative means to honor your loved ones' legacy to match their unique life and personality.

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