Tell me about the design of your urns?

When our mum died a few years ago, we found it incredibly hard to find a funeral urn that we liked; that she would have liked… The designs that were being offered seemed to have remained unchanged for a long time and there was hardly any choice or variety.

With Urns by Atemo we wanted to put together a collection of beautiful and contemporary urns for ashes that have been chosen with love and compassion. We wanted to move away from the more sombre and old fashioned designs of the past. We wanted our urns to be simple, understated and versatile in design to integrate into your home as well as to suit a variety of personal styles and flower arrangement.

The name we chose for our collection, Urns by Atemo, is a combination of the German word Atem, which means breath and 'te amo', which means 'I love you' in Spanish...

We know that this is a purchase no one wants to make, but we think that choosing the right urn with love can bring some solace and peace. We hope that within our collection, you will find an urn that might reflect your loved one’s values and preferences and personality.

Are Urns by Atemo 100% biodegradable?

Yes, our all our urns are completely biodegradable. The urns in our collection are comprised of the highest quality eco-friendly materials. They are made of Arboform® which is also called liquid wood (Lignin). Liquid wood is a by-product of paper production and is a 100% natural, biodegradable and renewable raw material. which looks and feels very similar to polished or mat wood. It is eco-friendly, non-toxic and does not deplete or depend on non-renewable resources. In a special place in your home the urns will last indefinitely. However, when placed in nature and exposed to soil and moisture the decomposition process starts and with time, the urns will leave no residue and will become one with nature again. During the decomposition process the urn’s components break down into water and humus, which are both part of the eternal cycle of nature. All our urns come with a biodegradable ash bag and sealing clip.

Recently we have added a new collection of biodegradable linen urns. Linen is a natural fibre that stems from flax. Growing flax uses very few natural resources.  Flax can grow in poor soil which is not used for food production and can even rehabilitate polluted soil. The ash bag and craft paper container inside the urn are completely biodegradable as well and will, just like the linen, over time become one with nature again if lowered into the ground and exposed to the elements.

How long do your urns take to decompose once placed into the ground?

Our experience has shown that if placed in nature, our urns decompose within 5 – 15 years. The decomposition process largely depends on soil conditions, humidity and temperature in the ground. If kept inside the home, the urns last indefinitely.

What if I want to keep the urn in my home?

Indoors our urns last indefinitely just like any traditional urn would. You can keep the urn in a special place in your home permanently, or temporarily until you are ready to find a peaceful resting place in nature. Our urns only decompose if placed into the ground and if they are exposed to soil and water. Imagine the branch of a tree or anything made of wood. In a home environment it would last indefinitely, if placed in nature, over time the wood would start to decompose and eventually become one with nature again. Please avoid direct exposure to sun and heat over a prolonged period of time to avoid any fading of colours.

Do funeral urns need to be sealed?

In Australia funeral urns do not need to be sealed. You will receive the ashes from the crematorium in a temporary plastic container. You can either fill the ashes into the urn you have chosen yourself or ask the crematorium to do this for you. Many people keep the ashes of their loved one at home before they decide where to bury the urn or scatter ashes later on. The lid of our urns can be closed and opened. A sealable ash bag is included. 

Will your urns hold all the ashes of an adult?

Our urns are designed to hold all of the ashes of an adult. They also leave a little room for easier placement of the ash bag, or to include a message of love or a personal token. Depending on the urn, their capacity is 4 – 5.5l. Ashes for a tall adult will usually be around 3.6l. You will find more information regarding measurements and capacity in the product descriptions of the individual urns.

What can I do with the ashes?

There are very few regulations in Australia in regard to funeral ashes. The ashes can be buried in a cemetery, or placed in a columbarium or niche wall. You can keep the ashes in a special place in your home or decide to scatter them on private land, public parks, beaches, rivers or at sea. If it is not your property, you may have to get permission from the owner of the land, the Trust of Parks and Reserves or your local council for parks and beaches.

Can I scatter ashes in the ocean?

Ashes can also be scattered in the ocean. In Australia you do not need a permission to scatter ashes at sea. However, you need permission from the owner of the vessel, if it is not your own boat. There are many companies who specialise in scattering ashes at sea, and who can provide specific advice.

How do I receive the ashes from the crematorium?

You will receive the ashes from the crematorium in a temporary urn, which is typically a cuboid plastic container measuring about 25cm x 15cm x 12cm.

How do I fill the urn I purchased?

You can ask the crematorium to fill the urn for you.

If you are near Mosman in Sydney, you can contact us and we will transfer the ashes into the urn for you – it would be an honour to help you with this.

You can also fill the urn yourself. This might be a sad moment, but there is nothing scary about it. The texture of the Ashes almost resembles coarse sand from the beach. Our urns contain a biodegradable bag for the ashes that can be sealed. The temporary urn that you receive from the crematorium is not sealed. It has a plug that can be opened (for example with a knife or a flat screw driver). To fill one of our urns, open the temporary urn first, and place it all the way into the ash bag. Then turn the temporary urn on its head, so the ashes fall from the opening straight onto the bottom of the bag. Once the temporary urn has been emptied completely, take it out of the bag, and seal the ash bag with the included clip. Place the ash bag into the urn and close the lid.

Where are Urns by Atemo made?

Our urns are made in Germany by small family-owned manufacturers who are commited to low-carbon manufacturing.

Our collection of linen urns is manufactured in Finland.

Here in Australia our urns are customised and hand-painted by local artists.