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How to Use a Funeral Program Template

Funeral program templates are a quick and easy way to produce funeral or obituary programs for a wake, funeral or memorial service.  A  funeral program (also known as an Obituary Program or Memorial Service Program) is a printed document which lists the details of the funeral or memorial service, as well as biographical information and key milestones of the deceased’s life.  Funeral programs can also contain favorite scriptures, poems or sayings.  Funeral program templates are pre-designed documents, with graphics and text placeholders for all information that you may want to include.  Funeral program templates can be found on the Internet, and are usually available for immediate download.  Template prices range from free to about $50.00.

When choosing a funeral program template, the first step is to have an idea of a graphic design.  There are many different design themes to choose from.  These themes range from conservative religious designs, florals, landscapes as well as themes based on occupations (such as police officers or military service) or hobbies (such as music or golf).  Once you choose a design, consider whether you want a picture of the deceased on the cover.

Once you have a general idea about your cover design, think about the kind of information that you want to include in your funeral program.  The amount of information you want to include will drive the size and layout of your funeral program.  Templates are available in a wide range of sizes and layouts, including 8 1/2″ x 11″ and 8 1/2 x 14 and even 11″ X 17″.  The layout can be bi-fold, tri-fold and graduated styles.  If you want a basic funeral program, with just the order of service information, obituary and poem, an 8 1/2 X 11″ bi-fold can be used.  If you want multiple pictures or photo collages, poems, hymn or funeral music lyrics, special thank you verbiage and acknowledgments, you may want to select a larger paper size, with a tri-fold layout for additional space.

When selecting a template, make sure you are clear about how much information you are able to edit or change.  Some templates have standard captions on the cover (such as “In Loving Memory”) that cannot be changed.  Other templates allow all text to be changed.  Also, you may want to select a template that will allow you to change other aspects of the design such borders and font sizes and colors.

Printing your funeral program template is the most important step in this process.  Some template designs are color intensive, with full color on the front and back.  The more graphics and color on a template, the longer the program will take to print.  Printing a full color, double-sided program may take an average ink-jet printer 1-2 minutes each program (of course, this depends on your printers speed and capacity).  Make sure you allow sufficient time to print your programs.  Also check your ink levels before you begin printing.  It’s always a good idea to have a extra set of ink cartridges on hand just in case you run when stores are closed.  Once your programs are printed, you will need to fold or staple them.  Make sure you allocate time for folding or stapling, or delegate the task to a friend or helper.  You can also take you printed programs to an office supply store and have them machine folded for about 2-5 cents per program, depending on the fold.



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