Solution: Some deckboard fished out of a skip, fashioned into a cross, and tricked out with a strip of tile for the inscription.
Step 1: First Make Your Cross
Step 2: The Inscription
The idea was to paint the inscription with enamel paint, and varnish over. But can you find enamel paint when you need at short notice? No.
The shot below just shows the tile with a makeshift marker pen inscription.
Step 3: Now Stake Your Grave
Step 4: RIP
When my mother died (some years ago), I thought of trying to make the headstone myself. But I lacked confidence. Never having done such a thing before, I faltered. And just as importantly there were the wishes of my siblings and other relatives to take into consideration. It would have required a lot of negotiation and reassuring and compromise. A headstone is for everyone who loved and wants to remember - not just for me. Yet I regret a missed opportunity. Graveyards, in England at any rate, are astonishingly dull and conformist places. I like headstones with a photograph of the deceased, and spouse. Graves with ornaments carrying stanzas of poetry or rhyme. I like statues and colour and animal sculptures. When I go I want someone to make something individual to mark me out. So I was delighted to find a grave nearby marked out with solar-powered night lights - the lovely lady that I made the cross for would have liked them too. And I was surprised and cheered to find that several newer neighbouring graves had home-made wooden crosses to mark them too. My wooden cross will soon be replaced by a conventional headstone. But I'm pleased to have had the opportunity to do this, and if there's a next time, I'll feel rather more confident.
In conclusion - this cross is partly an expression of my regret that I allowed my mother to have a standard gravestone like any other. It has given me a warm glow to be able to do something personal for a lady that I liked. And I urge, with feeling, anyone who feels so inclined to go for it too. Be sensitive, but be positive. Just because everyone else gets a lump of mass produced granite is no reason your loved one should too. Do it yourself, and make remembrance more rememorable. It would enbiggen us all.