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How to Design Your Own Headstone or Monument

Draw, Design, Measure, Make and Order Your Own Custom Built Headstone In The USA | Use An App, Software Or A Pencil | Visualize, Sketch, Plan, Render And Diagram | Flat Markers | Slant Markers | Upright Monuments | Memorial Benches | Statues | Private Family Mausoleums

Now you can design your own 100% personalized custom headstone with helpful guidance from the artists at Rome Monument, and Rome will build it for you, deliver it to your home or cemetery anywhere in the USA, and assemble and install it. Imagine creating a one-of-a-kind headstone, gravestone, monument, or mausoleum that memorializes a loved one far better than any impersonal template or monument design catalog can! That’s because you pick out the exact type of granite you want, granite color and texture, then dream up your own shape, size, artwork, inscription, and other elements that go into a great headstone that is for you and you alone. You will never be restricted by a limited number of shapes, styles, and options that most online design software, design your own headstone apps, other monument companies, cemeteries, and funeral homes offer you.

Rome Monument makes 100% personalized monuments by collaborating with our customers on design ideas and design specifics. While we have expert designers on staff, we invite you to submit your headstone concepts to us with initial sketches, drawings or computer aided renderings. “Design your own headstone” software and apps help you create your own headstone design with any unique shapes, artwork and inscriptions you desire. It’s an ideal way to personalize the headstone just the way you want…just for you!

One way to get ideas for monument designs is to go to the Design Gallery, pick out a design you like, and send Rome Monument the link. Then a Rome designer will create a new custom monument design to your specifications based on the monument design you picked out. However, now you can go a step further. Just make a simple sketch of your idea on a pad of paper or a napkin, or make a structural drawing with drawing tools and equipment, or use a design your own monument app or software to make a professional-looking rendering. Then send it to Rome Monument where our designers will refine your drawing, provide you with an estimate for manufacturing the monument in our own production facility, then delivering the monument to your cemetery or home and installing it!

Rome Monument is America’s premier monument design and construction company since 1934. When we started out, all the monuments we designed began as simple hand drawings – and they still are! Every headstone we construct is personalized exclusively for your family and your family alone. Other monument companies, cemeteries, and funeral homes use design templates, and materials that they carry in stock. You choose from a limited selection of shapes, sizes, lettering styles and artwork.

Watch The Video Below to Learn How Rome Monument Crafts And Installs Personalized Custom Headstones In Cemeteries

In this video, you’ll learn about 100% personalized, custom cemetery monuments and the unlimited design possibilities for a family member’s eternal resting place. You’ll see examples of headstones by Rome Monument with unique sizes, shapes, granite colors and artwork. And you’ll follow the story of the “Elephant on the Tomb”, an upright headstone that actually has a sculpted elephant sitting right on top of a granite slab!

You don’t have to be an artist to design your own marker, headstone, gravestone, monument or mausoleum. Write your idea down on a piece of paper or on your computer. OR…sketch your idea with a pencil on drawing paper or a napkin. OR…use easy design your own monument software or apps that let you create exactly what you envision in your mind. OR…use CAD software to create a detailed rendering of your software. Monument design software lets you visualize, plan, diagram, sketch, draw, render and 3D model custom designed headstone. The artists at Rome can help you find what is the best method for your artistic skill level. Then we can take your simple sketches or written instructions and make detailed CAD drawings for your approval. When designing your own headstone, taking practical steps is important. Consider doodling in a sketchbook to explore your ideas, look at other headstones in our Design Gallery, or take a walk through a cemetery to get inspiration from existing headstones.

The only limits to your monument design are determined by the rules and regulations of your cemetery. In many cases, cemeteries only allow certain types of monuments, certain sizes and shapes, and even certain colors. Check with your cemetery before designing your memorial. Rome Monument has been working with cemeteries around the country for over 80 years. We are able to work closely with them to ensure a smooth process for you and the cemetery. It is the customer’s responsibility to make sure that the monument will fit within the cemetery regulations. Most of the time cemeteries charge to have a monument set. The best way to know if your cemetery charges and what the fees will be is to give them a call. The cemetery can provide all of this information for you. 

Save and Share Artwork Designs You Make on Your Own

Rome would like to see your own drawing of the product you envision. When you complete a headstone design that you sketch, draw, or render on the computer, send us a computer scan, JPG,  PDF, CAD Pro file, or photo from your phone. You can download LEOPOLY CAD sculpting software or Monu-CAD which will let you design, visualize, and document your headstone design ideas.  You can rough out an initial headstone design concept, design your own headstone online, or create an accurate list of materials. On the other hand, you can simply draw the headstone using a pencil, ruler and graph paper, then scan your headstone design and email it to Rome. You can also take a picture of your headstone layout with your phone.

Some monument manufacturers such as Nationwide Monument, Salem Stones, and Granite State Grave Markers allow you to design a headstone from a number of templates with their propriety software. Then they will have the headstone manufactured or assembled in a manufacturing facility.

Nationwide Monument lets you select from flats, slants, or uprights and choose from hundreds of different layouts and artistic objects. Their granite suppliers include quarries in China, India, Canada and the United States.

Salem Stones “Salem Select” is fully interactive software that allows you to customize every aspect of a memorial stone, from selecting, designing and ordering monuments with a few clicks. You create your own dimensions, finish, size, text color, and art from a large but limited selection of options.

Granite State Grave Markers lets you create a traditional flush marker design in four easy-to-follow steps. Select your granite color, choose your engraving design, choose your customized font and epitaph, then review the layout for final approval and pay on line. They also have the markers made for you.

There are also several “Design Your Own Monument” software options available that are free or that you can purchase. One of the best is Monu-Cad. It offers beginner to professional software that allow you to design, layout, personalize, and create stencil masks for the manufacture of cemetery memorials. Their complete dynamic visual editing tool commands give you precise and full control over every design aspect. It includes up to 13,600 pre-made monument designs, emblems and artwork and over 90 Monument Specific Alphabets, 1024 Layers Feature, Color Fills and Hatching Feature, Linear and Angular Dimensioning Feature, a complete compliment of drawing tools including lines, arcs, circles, complex curves, Bezier curves, ellipses, rectangles. The Monu-Cad system can also easily make use of the millions of designs freely available on the internet, in CD design catalogs and from subscription services. 

LEOPOLY CAD 3-D sculpting software lets you fully realize your own design sculptural concept. Start from scratch to sculpt, build from blocks or form the shape with sliders. Browse among thousands of models and shapes to use as a starting point. If you have your own 3-D file, you can upload your STL or OBJ for editing.

If you are looking for a custom headstone maker, contact Rome Monument. Get valuable tips on designing your own headstone and mausoleums. Look at how other creative people designed and made their own eye catching and unique headstones here.  Rome Monument manufacturers custom built headstones and mausoleums from designs that other people think up and draw out.

Rome Monument specializes in carving, engraving, etching and sculpting personalized artwork in the design of the monuments we build. You can browse completed designs by the type of artwork for granite and bronze monuments, memorials, gravestones, cemetery benches, headstones, grave markers and mausoleums. Click on the images below to browse monument designs that feature the following types of artwork; Musical Instruments and Symbols, Profession and Career Artwork, Wedding Rings, Bands and Dates, Porcelain Pictures, Etched Portraits, Engraved Sports Themes and Symbols, Family Heritage Imagery, Outdoor Scene Artwork, Flowers, Hobbies And Interests, Religious Symbolism, Angel Artwork, Animal Artwork and Scenes, Emblems, Logos and Symbols, Etched Epitaphs and Inscriptions, Heart Shapes and Imagery, Hunting and Fishing Artwork, and Transportation, Vehicle and Car Artwork.

Find, Save and Share Artwork Designs You Like

If you find a good example in the Design Gallery of a monument with special artwork that you would like built, you can share the design on social media, email the design to a family member,  request a price estimate and much more. To schedule a meeting in a showroom to discuss a design, for prices or to order any type of memorial, call 724-770-0100 or click here to contact us. All carving and lettering is done in-house by Rome Monument's certified master carvers in the company’s 30,000-square-foot manufacturing space in Monaca, PA at the Rome Monument Works Artisan Center.

On the other hand, if you want to design your own one-of-a-kind headstone from scratch, you can design or draw your own headstone and Rome Monument will build it, deliver, install and assemble it for you, assuming you live in the continental USA. Our firm is passionate about creative headstone design.  ROME MONUMENT always welcomes the chance to bid on simple or high-end headstone cemetery monument projects.

Many people ask us how they can send us example image files, custom headstone design ideas, plans or documents of their headstone project so that they can custom order high quality granite headstones.  To gain some insight into the custom headstone design process, or to submit your custom headstone design or CAD drawing, call 724-770-0100, or email info@romemonuments.com. File formats you can use to submit your headstone design to Rome include .gif, .jpg, .pdf, .dwg, .ifc, .dxf, .png, .eps, .stl, .dae, .3ds, .dem, .ddf, .tif, .bmp, .pds, .tga, .fbx, .ai, .kmz, .obj, .wrl and .xsi. 

How to Draw, Sketch and Design Your Own Headstone

There are several things to consider when designing your own headstone, including size, shape, color, lettering, epitaphs, and artwork. But it is important to decide first what type of headstone you want for a loved one.

Flat granite markers lay at grass level at the head of the gravesite. Companion Flat Markers are larger to cover two gravesites if the couple is buried side by side. Because they are small markers, it is not wise to put too much information or artwork on them. Keep them simple. One artistic element, a short epitaph or inscription, and the person’s name, date of birth and date of death is often sufficient.

Slant granite markers are larger yet still have approximately the same amount of space on the polished face. However, these are usually supported by a granite base on which etchings can be made. Again, keep it simple with one artistic element, a short epitaph or inscription, and the person’s name, date of birth and date of death on the slant face. Then add a name or inscription on the base if you wish.

Upright granite monuments can be as large as your cemetery allows, since the space they occupy is a vertical space rising up from the head of the cemetery and usually supported by a granite base. Upright monuments can be flat slabs of granite, sculpted slabs, statues, or any combination of these. Be as creative as you want. Add artwork, inscriptions, porcelain portraits, and more, but don’t get too ostentatious. At Rome, our philosophy is “less is more”.

Private Family Mausoleums are either low granite box-like structures just a few feet high or massive buildings that can be as large as the Taj Mahal or Grant’s Tomb in New York City. These often have columns, roofs, exterior and interior walls, bases or walk-ups, benches, landscaping, interior rooms, niches, columbariums, and many more architectural elements to enrich the beauty and enhance the magnitude of the mausoleum. Still, you make the sketch, draft or computer rendering and we’ll make it a functional design.

Our Products, Our Prices

Listed below are general price ranges and costs for headstones, memorials and monuments designed, built and installed by Rome Monument for families in the United States.

If you are interested in an exact price, call 724-770-0100 for precise costs for memorials, monuments, headstones, memorial benches, mausoleums and gravestones. A number of distinct factors directly affect how gravemarker prices are determined including size, type, material, design detail, and sculpting and carving options. The price of a granite memorial depends primarily on marker size and the type of granite used. When quoting a cost for a monument, we will need to know certain information in addition to your contact information. This includes:

  • Your cemetery name and state
  • Number of graves the memorial will mark
  • Birth and death dates for inscription
  • Additional epitaph, verse, quote, or saying for inscription
  • Preferred granite color
  • Approximate date for delivery and installation

To get an exact cost for a memorial or monument, call 724-770-0100 or click here to schedule a design meeting at a showroom.

Monument and Mausoleum Delivery and Installation in The U.S.

Rome Monument installs monuments and mausoleums in cemeteries throughout the continental (Lower 48) United States. We also install memorials and mausoleums on private property for individuals and civic organizations.

In the case of individual and family cemetery monuments, we offer free local delivery and installation in the Greater Pittsburgh PA area. In cases where we are delivering a monument outside of our local area, we may negotiate or quote an additional delivery fee. Rome Monument owns and operates monument setting crane trucks used to deliver and install headstones, gravestones, monuments and memorials in public and private Pittsburgh area cemeteries, memorial parks, church cemeteries.  Rome Monument routinely collaborates with cemetery management staff and administrators before monuments are delivered and installed. In 2017, Rome Monument started offering monument delivery and installation services from coast to coast throughout the United States. 

If you are interested in having a headstone, gravestone, memorial bench or mausoleum designed, created, delivered and installed in a cemetery, private setting or public location, please call our main office at 724-770-0100 or click here to contact us.

See How Rome Monument Installs High Quality Mausoleums In Cemeteries And Memorial Gardens In the United States

In this video, Rome Monument shows you how to tell the difference between high quality mausoleum and low quality mausoleum design, construction and installation. In addition to a superior, professional design, the quality of a mausoleum depends on such factors as the reputation of the granite quarry, the experience of the mausoleum installation personnel, the quality of the granite, foundation, base course, side walls, roof and joints, among other construction elements.

Let’s Get Started Designing Your Own Headstone

Rome is looking forward to working with you on your own custom designed monument that we will make in our own production facility. You can rough out an initial headstone design concept, draw the headstone using a pencil, ruler and graph paper, or use a Design Your Headstone app or software, then email it to Rome. You can also take a picture of your headstone layout with your phone. If you need help getting started, feel free to call 724-770-0100 and talk with Chris Morgan or Vince Dioguardi. We’re here to help you create the 100% personalized headstone that is built from your dreams!