We memorialize to honor the ones we love, to portray memories, interests and hobbies. Through size, shape and color of the monument we can make each monument as simple or as unique as the life lived.
Your choice of lettering, for your loved one, will depend upon the color of granite and style of lettering you find most appealing. Traditional “V-Sunk” and sometimes “polished edge” styles of engraving are used on light colored granite. It is cut deep into the stone and it has a sanded background panel or a polished edge so that is can be visibly seen. By choosing black granite of any of the dark granite, you have much more freedom to select lettering styles that are sand blasted directly into the polished of the granite. In other words, the letters don’t require additional polishing or deep sinking and instead leave the natural beauty of the granite showing. Dark or black granite will allow you to use the greatest variety of lettering styles or fonts and to most easily include things like poems or paragraph description. Remember that from an artistic perspective, only one or two types of letter fonts should ever be used on a single memorial and if a dark granite monument is sandblasted with deep lettering and then painted on white to provide contrast, the entire concept of natural beauty is forgone. Once the paint fades the lettering and design will also be very difficult to see.
When designing your monument, we will assist you with recommendations to help express your memories on granite. Flat and shape carvings are two types of carving designs used on traditional monuments. Flat carving is a basic engraving method that is highly used for graphic elements like a tree, wheat, praying hands or a cross. It works very well on all types of colored granite. Flat carving is further enhanced through something called shape caving. With shape carving, an artist provides deeper carving and greater 3D dimensions on a gravestone bringing it to life. This method is most common with flowers on a gravestone and works great throughout the spectrum of granite colors available. Shape carving is a skill taught from father to son through generations. Very few people can shape carve monuments and we are fortunate to have a gentleman in our local plant that possesses this skill.
If you have a memorial design where you desire fine graphics, lettering and even photos then laser etching is a good choice. Laser engraving is a process where a computer controls a laser that fractures and burns the pores of the granite upward. At out local plant we do have a laser etching machine to accommodate you with any design or picture that you would like to have on your memorial. Large poems can be etched in sizes not recommended for sand blasting. Scenes and family portraits can be etched with perfect detail and unlike some porcelain pictures, this will not fade. Laser engraving works well on black granite only.
Diamond etching is another option available when someone wants a very personal design. In diamond etching an artist uses an etching tool and carves directly on the stone. The method is only as good as the artist. This method ensures a totally one of a kind, every time, and is a way to express subtle hues and artistic creativity in the stone. Unlike a picture that is laser etched, with diamond etching, the artist can alter a scene any way you desire with deer, lakes, clouds ect. This method is only recommended on the darkest of granites and ideally on black granites.
Pricing is determined by 3 main factors: 1. Color of material, 2. Monument size and 3. How the monument is shaped and finished. Granite comes from all over the world with each varying in price. Some of these granites are less abundant and far denser than others thus heavier and cost more to freight. Size of the monument is up to each customer. Obviously a much larger monument will cost more, but a marker is twice as large as another is generally around 60% more in price rather than double. Lastly is the shape of the monument. With more shape and polished finishes, more workmanship goes into making the marker more intricate. Traditionally, in this area, upright monuments are polished on the front and back surfaces. For a more distinguished look, the top, sides and even cut-in angles can be polished.