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If you or a loved one has decided on a traditional burial, one of the many choices associated with that process is the type of coffin or casket one will be laid to rest in. As a person’s final resting place, this selection is an important one and offers many opportunities for personalization and tribute to the deceased.

Catholic Funeral Mass In A Church.

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What’s the Difference Between a Coffin and a Casket?

The first decision one must make is the type of burial vessel: coffin or casket? Coffin is the term for a long, narrow burial vessel. A traditional coffin is more narrow at the head and foot, with the broadest section around the shoulders. “Casket” is a term that refers to a different design: caskets are more rectangular, sometimes with rounded corners.

Caskets tend to be more high-quality items and made of better materials. The term “casket” initially referred to a jewelry or treasure box common among Europeans in the 20th century. When undertakers began decorating coffins with great care, people began making a comparison between the jewelry cases and the burial vessels, which led to the term “burial casket.”


Caskets are generally made of either metal or wood. Wooden caskets tend to be decorated with many of the design elements associated with furniture and often take on the natural color of the selected wood grain—elm, maple and ash are popular wood types for caskets. Metal caskets are made of bronze, copper or steel and can be painted just about any color.


There are a variety of ways to personalize a loved one’s casket. Many people choose to decorate a casket with images on either the inside or the outside of the vessel. Caskets can also be engraved with a message or the loved ones name and life dates.

Click HERE to read more tips on how to choose a casket!


We understand that funeral planning can be difficult and the Hutchison Funeral Home is here to help. For over 35 years, we have been providing families in the Metro Detroit area with dignified services that are personal, respectful, and affordable. Our team will work with you to provide personalized recommendations that will fit your vision and your budget. We are here to listen to your needs and wishes. Together, we can create the funeral service that your loved one deserves.

For more information on the services we provide, or to read more great articles:

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