It has been a veritable merry-go-round of misery, death, and solitude recently. To stave off cabin fever, many people have started new hobbies, like baking bread, or scrapbooking, or learning a new language to better understand the weird sex noises their Ukrainian neighbors are making. But maybe you've grown tired of those fads, and you're looking for a fun new pastime to take your mind off all the doom and gloom. In that case, have you tried making your own coffin?
We've all been there. You're attending the closed-casket funeral of your cousin, who thought face masks were a hoax created by Bill Gates to inject Windows Office into your brain, and as his body is lowered into the earth, you think: "Boy, that casket sure looks like a dime a dozen." Then Coffin Club might be the right fit for you! Started in 2010 by former palliative care nurse Katie Willams of New Zealand, Coffin Clubs are a DIY arts and crafts collectives where members decorate their own caskets, blowing new life into the process of choosing your forever compost crate. As seen in this short:
Taking a page from the Ghanese book of the dead, members gather once a week to beautify their own coffin in the extravagant style of their choosing. Like painting your coffin to resemble a chequered flag to indicate you've reached your final lap. Or plastering it with pictures of Elvis to let people know you've left the building. Or, if you're into that sort of thing, like Kate Tym, affix a life-size cutout of Kevin Bacon to the inside of the lid so that, quote, "he's lying on top of me" for all of eternity.
ince we know that money is as tight as a chest with a ventilator jammed into it, joining a Coffin Club can save you a ton of cash as well. Instead of buying a casket from a funeral director, the second-hand car salesmen of the afterlife, CC members are provided with materials and workshops to construct coffins at a fraction of the price. Sure, they may look like they come straight out of the DODDENBOX section of IKEA, but that's what the bedazzling is for.
Aside from the original Kiwi Coffin Club, large franchises have popped up in Australia, the UK, and the US. According to founder Williams herself, people in 50 countries have contacted her asking for help establish a regional branch. And since we can all drop dead at any time at any place (like, wait for it, now), people of all ages and backgrounds are welcome to join. Some clubs even have celebrity members. Like Miriam Margolyes, Professor Sprout from the Harry Potter movies, a member of the North London Coffin Club who believes that "everybody who's going to die should go to coffin club" -- which is most of us.
But Coffin Club isn't just a place where you can pimp your ride into the afterlife. Many of its aged members joined the club after their loved one passed away, looking for a like-minded community also pondering when it will be their turn to get in the box. As such, the community aims to create a space where people can contemplate their mortality in a joyful and self-empowering way. Or just to have a cup of tea and talk about the cool racing stripes you're going to put on your coffin. You know, cool club stuff.
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Top Image: Loading Docs