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Filling cremation jewelry is pretty straightforward, but can sometimes be a bit challenging due to the small openings in some pieces, particularly some necklaces and rings. Below are some recommendations on how to go about it. Note: If you’re not comfortable filling your jewelry, ask your funeral home for help. Many funeral homes will assist with handling your loved ones' cremains.
Depending on the type of keepsake you have, you’ll need to open your ashes chamber by unscrewing the compartment. On pendants, this may mean unscrewing the bail that connects the necklace to the pendant. On some rings, pendants, and bracelets there is a small screw that needs to be removed to expose the chamber. (Note: Some glass items may not have a screw since they are intended to be glued in place.)
Use care when removing or rescrewing either the bail or the screw, since the threads are small and can be damaged if you apply too much force. Also be careful to avoid marring the finish of the piece when using a screwdriver.
Once you’ve opened your ashes keepsake, you’ll want to use a small funnel or spoon to add the ashes or other keepsake items. Many of our keepsake items come with an included funnel, however if you don’t have a funnel, you can also use a rolled piece of paper or aluminum foil to create your own small funnel. (Click here for to order a funnel kit.)
Cremains tend to be very fine, so we recommend using a tamp to help move them through your funnel or off your spoon. Again, this is sometimes included, but if you don’t have one you can use a toothpick, small screwdriver, or large needle.
Make sure that you don’t overfill your ashes keepsake. You need to ensure that you have enough room to reattach your bail or screw. If you don’t have enough room, remove any excess, and test it again for a tight fit. It’s important to make sure that nothing is obstructing the screw threads after you’ve filled your keepsake. You can use your tamp or toothpick to gently remove any ashes or other obstructions.
Once you’ve filled your keepsake, test fit the screw or bail to make sure that you’ve left enough room for them to close securely. Once you’ve ensured that it fits correctly, remove it again for the next step.
Many of our necklaces, rings, bracelets, and keychains have rubber gaskets or very tight fitting threaded screws that ensure a secure fit. However, we highly recommend adding a permanent seal to ensure that your keepsake can’t come loose, and that there is no leakage. We recommend using non-water soluble glue, adhesive, or epoxy once you've filled your keepsake and ensured that the screw or bail fits snugly.
When applying your adhesive, use a toothpick or tamp, placing a drop of adhesive to the threads under the bail or within the compartment of your keepsake if it uses a screw. We don’t recommend applying adhesive directly to the screw since they’re very small and difficult to handle.
Once the adhesive has been added, tighten the bail or screw securely, wiping away any excess glue. On necklaces or pendants that use a bail attachment, make sure the bail is aligned so that the eyelet for the necklace allows the necklace to hang correctly against your chest.
Once you’ve applied your adhesive, let it cure for the manufacturer recommended time. We recommend erring on the side of caution, and letting it fully dry for 12 to 24 hours before wearing it. Even after the adhesive dries, we do not recommend wearing your keepsake in the shower, or submerging it in water.
Keep in mind that many rings, necklaces, bracelets, and other keepsakes are designed to hold a very small amount of ashes, sand or other keepsakes. If you would like a keepsake to accommodates more cremains, look at our vials, cylinders, and glass containers.
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