About Us

Headstones Direct is a company started by business professionals with over 12 years experience of running successful small businesses.

It is based in Gisborne and can freight Headstones throughout New Zealand freight free. We have large stock lines to give our customers more of a variety. At present we have numerous ones including new shipments of headstones/gravestones throughout the year. Engraving is another part of our business whch we do.

Any size, shape or design. White or gold leaf. Allow 4 weeks for this sevice.Also we do photos, allow approx 14 days as they are done in Italy.

When is the best time to consider buying a headstone/gravestone?

Death isn't something that many want to talk about, but usually something that we all think about.Its safe to say that we don`t want our families to have to do a number of things. They shouldn`t have to plan everything. However, there are some things that some want to choose from. So, just when is the best time to consider buying a headstone? This could be debated.

Some will say that the headstone should be purchased when you buy the casket and other funeral planning. This isn't something that is your decision and with that in mind, you have to know what lies in your best of interest. There are others who will disagree on this

There are some who will say that you should buy a headstone later on. The reason that they do this is because of the fact that some choose to be mothers later in life and so forth. With this in mind, they might want that they were a beloved mother and so forth on it. So, to get things right so that the inscription is correct, they wait.

There are some who have to be prepared. What they are doing or going through is hard enough on their families. For instance, they may have a dangerous job where their lives are on the line all the time. Then, there are those who might be facing a terminal illness. So why put it off? That's what they think.

Then, there are those families where they want someone else to pick it out. They trust their family. So, in those cases they will pay for it ahead of time. This is sometimes the best thing to do as we said before that there are cases where they waited to have children and so forth. That is why some will wait until after they have passed. However, if you are doing a family plot and family headstone, you should get it early.

So, when you ask what the perfect time is, there is no perfect time. Some put it off. Some want to deal with it head on. There are some who get them when they are in their twenties and so forth. You just never know. Talk with your family about it. They might want to have a say in it.

Wondering when is best time to consider buying a headstone?
All you need to know about Headstones/Gravestones please phone: 0800 TOMBSTONE (0800 866 278).

Choosing a headstone.

Choosing a headstone for your loved one is not an easy thing to do, but this will help you through the process. Ordering a headstone for your loved one is an important step in the healing process. The completed headstone is an everlasting tribute that can be cherished for years to come.

When choosing a headstone, there are several things that need to be taken into consideration. First and foremost it is important to know what the cemetery rules & regulations for headstones are. Having this information beforehand is crucial to ensure the right memorial is ordered the first time.

Probably the biggest deciding factor in choosing a headstone/gravestone is the cost. Many people have deterred from purchasing a Memorial Headstone or had to settle on downsizing their choice simply beacause of high prices.

Once you know what kind of memorial can be placed on the grave you can consider the different options you have in choosing a headstone/gravestone.

They include :

  • Materials/construction.
  • Selecting a size thats suitable.
  • Granite colour and vase option.
  • Choosing a meaningful design.
  • Personalization.
  • Epitaph
  • Writing an Epitaph
  • Examples

Granite headstones/gravestones

Granite headstones are the most popular form of cemetery memorials. Practically all of the cemeteries in NZ allow some form of granite memorials. Natural stone is one of the oldest forms of memorialization and granite is the best possible choice. This is because granite is a durable stone and one of the hardest substances on earth.

Granite Headstones are made from granite that has been quarried from the earth . Utilizing specialized machinery and craftsmen, the granite stone is cut to a specified size and finished normally with a polished surface. An artist will design the memorial complete with the name and dates, which is then engraved onto the stone surface by means of sandblasting .

Headstone sizes

Many cemeteries regulate the size of the headstone that can be placed on the grave space. Some offer a minimum and maximum size and as long as the headstone is within these guidelines it will be okay. Other cemeteries are very strict with their size requirements and will only allow particular sizes for headstones. It is very important to select a headstone that is within the size requirements.

Granite colour

The colour of a granite headstone can be very important decision . Some people choose a colour bases on personal reasoning . Others choose colour so that it sets itself apart from others in the cemetery. Some cemeteries restrict the colour of granite being used for a headstone or grave marker. You will want to verify with the cemetery if they have any granite colour requirements before making a purchase. There is a wide variety of granite colours available for a headstone, but not all monument dealers will carry them. In fact most dealers carry a selection that represents the major colour groups.

Vase options

Many people who visit a loved one's grave in the cemetery bring flowers to the gravesite . A flower vase is a very convenient option on a headstone or grave marker . It accents the memorial when filled with fresh or silk flowers and brings beauty to the resting place of your loved one. Most upright headstones have a place on either side of the base for the placement of a flower vase. Flat grave markers can have a hole cored to accommodate a bronze flower vase.

Design & layout

Probably the most important aspect of a headstone is the design. Many families place such importance on this area since they feel it is a reflection of the person the memorial is for.

A design can depict a scenic location, a favorite flower or have religious signifcance. A design can be further personlized by the use of emblems. You will find there are limitless design possibilities for creating a memorial headstone. They include an array of floral, religious and scenic motifs just to name a few. When choosing a design you may want to consider the symbolism behind many of the different elements within a particular memorial design. For example a dogwood design features the dogwood tree's flowers and leaves around the border. The dogwood flower symbolizes Chrisianity, divine sacrifice, triumph of eternal life, and resurrection. Choosing a headstone with symbolism significant to the deceased is much more fitting.

Headstone/gravestone personalization

After you have selected all other options you now have the opportunity to personalize the headstone. You start with the persons name, date of birth and date of death. You can further personalize the headstone or grave marker with emblems or adding an Epitaph. An emblem is an image or insignia of a particular interest such as a sport , religion, hobby, military branch, animal or vehicle to name a few. They are usually small in size and on porcelain or etched/sandblasted on the granite headstone. As you can see there is plenty to learn regarding the choice of headstone for a family member.


The significance of an epitaph, is when a loved one has been laid to rest in a cemetery the final stage of closure involves the placement of a tombstone or a grave marker identifying their grave. It is here that we are given one final occasion to communicate to the world the significance of our loved one. Tombstone epitaphs are a reflection of one's existence highlighting their personality traits or accomplishments in life. In some cases they may also tell the story of the circumstances that brought them to their death. Even though tombstone epitaphs have varied over time one thing remains a constant. That is that epitaphs are a meaningful way to give respect to the deceased.

Writing an Epitaph

Tombstone epitaphs take on many forms and are derived from many sources. One of the most popular are taken from biblical scripture. Bereaved family members often choose a biblical verse as an epitaph as it may exhibit some virtuous quality that was a characteristic of the decendants life . Some choose to write a tombstone epitaph detailing the accomplishments of the decedents life. Maybe the person was a great doctor who selflessly gave his time tending to the sick, or one who was known for their philanthropy or community service. Whatever the subject a epitaph allows us to post our reflections of the personalities and the achievements of the departed, marking their existence here on earth.


We have several examples on hand, to many to list. You can see some of our headstones by viewing the gallery.

Choosing the right headstone/gravestone dealer

When purchasing a headstone for your loved one, you want to make sure you choose the right design, have the correct dates. Unlike any other purchased item you cant return or exchange it once it has been engraved. So therefore it is very important to take your time to get it right the first time.

Important things to look for when choosing a dealer is customer service, product quality and price.