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80 Graduation Party Ideas – Ultimate 2024 Guide

Are you trying to plan for the most amazing graduation party of the year? Check out these best graduation party ideas for your party this year.

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graduation party ideas

This article was updated on January 9th, 2024.

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Graduation, whether it be from high school or college, is an important moment in any student’s academic career.

It is the culmination of all of their hard work, time, and effort. They have endured many sleepless nights studying for stressful exams and writing page after page for their final paper.

They have overcome the trials and tribulations that came with four years of school and earn the degree that they worked so hard to complete.

This is a significant moment for your graduate, the end of one journey and the beginning of another. Once all the pomp and circumstance that comes with graduating has come to a close, it is time to celebrate!

Gather your closest family and friends and have a party full of food, fun activities, and flashy decor. Parties and large gatherings are scarce nowadays, due to the Coronavirus pandemic, so when it is safe to have a party, you have to go all the way!

The decor, activities, and gifts have to be memorable so that this celebration can be perfect for your graduate.

In this list of best graduation party ideas, we break down the ideal decorations, themes, and gifts for both high school and college graduations alike. 

Check out these 80 graduation party ideas!

In this post:

Graduation Party Decoration Ideas

Graduation Party Theme Ideas

Graduation Party Gift Ideas For Her

Graduation Party Ideas For Him

High School Graduation Party Ideas

Graduation Party Decoration Ideas

1. Make Graduation Cupcake Toppers

 

 

The party doesn’t begin without dessert! These festive cupcake toppers will spice up any baked goods to suit your party! Here are some links to cupcake toppers on Amazon that will go perfectly with your graduation party. 

Make your own:

2. Blow Up Graduation Balloons

 

Image by @laughinggoatdesign on Instagram 

 

Is a party really a party without balloons? These graduation balloons will do just the trick. Have a blast blowing up these balloons to liven up your party in a cute and inexpensive way. 

Do it yourself:

3. Set Up a Portable Speaker

 

 

Great parties require fun music to vibe to. With portable speakers, your party can blast catchy tunes from anywhere in your home, from outside on the patio to inside your dining room. 

Set it up yourself:

4. Put Up a Graduation Banner

 

Image by grace_kelly_events on Instagram

Let your neighbors know that a college graduate is in the house with a jovial graduation banner to hang right outside your front door. It could also serve as a sign to all party guests that this is where the fun is at! 

Put it up yourself:

5. Gather Champagne Glasses 

 

College graduation is an important adult accolade and you can celebrate this moment in an elegant, stylish way with some sleek champagne glasses

Get your own glasses:

6. Buy Graduation Photo Booth Props

 

Thinking of having a photo booth at your graduation party. Come prepared with graduation-themed photo booth props so that you and your friends could celebrate your achievements in style. 

Buy your own props:

7. Set Your Table with Graduation Plates and Napkins

 

Sometimes, all you need to take your graduation party to the next level is a high-spirited tableware set! They are disposable for easy cleanup and can be bought in a variety of designs. 

Set your own table:

8. Find Good Graduation Centerpieces

 

Bring your party table together with celebratory centerpieces! This decor can elevate the tastefulness of your event in an instant!

Find your own centerpieces:

9. Throw Graduation Confetti

 

It’s the little details that can truly bring your celebration together. Invest in graduation-themed confetti to elevate your graduation party in a major way. 

Get your own confetti:

10. Assemble a Graduation Card Box Holder

 

During this party, your graduate is going to be receiving a lot of gifts and cards from loving family and friends. Construct a graduation card box holder to keep these presents organized! 

Get your own graduation card box:

11. Hang a Party Backdrop

 

A good, attractive background is ideal for taking perfect graduation pictures. Find a lovely party backdrop and take as many photos as your heart desires! 

Create your own hanging backdrop:

12. Give Out Graduation Advice Cards

 

Following graduation, you are going to need a great deal of guidance in regards to the important decisions that you will be making. Use the wisdom of your party guests to your advance by encouraging them to fill out graduation advice cards to help you with your choices going forward. 

Get your own cards:

13. Put on Graduation Water Bottle Stickers

 

Stay hydrated and on theme with your graduation party by putting adorable water bottle stickers to put on every drink. I personally love this unique idea because I am a habitual water drinker and if you are too, then these stickers are for you!

Get your own stickers:

14. Make Miniature Custom Hand Sanitizers

 

This idea is similar to that of the water bottle stickers, but this is better suited to the current Coronavirus pandemic. Giving your guests custom hand sanitizers as party favors is such a thoughtful idea!

Get your own:

15. Give the Graduate their Sash 

 

A beautiful graduation sash is an ideal accessory to have at a celebratory party. I think it is the perfect attire to wear when you will be posing for many, many pictures amongst family and friends.

Get your own:

16. Get Noisemakers 

 

It’s a party – time to make some noise! Noisemakers may become annoying after hearing them over and over again, but they are harmless fun for everyone. 

Get your own:

17. Have a Bowl Full of Themed Candies 

 

Graduation-themed candies are ideal for satisfying those with a sweet tooth at your graduation party. As a sweet tooth myself, I would gravitate toward a bowl full of these adorable candies in an instant!

Get your own:

18. Bring a Disposable Camera

 

These cameras may have gone slightly out of style since I was a kid, but I think they are perfectly suited for small celebrations and events! They are perfect for taking plenty of pictures with your loved ones at your graduation party.

Get your own cameras:

19. Hang a Disco Ball 

 

This decoration will most certainly make your party a memorable one. Disco balls weren’t reserved for the 70s – they make an appearance at your graduation party too!

Get your own:

20. Graduation Attire for the Pets 

 

If you have a pet, they need to get the graduation party spirit as well with a cute outfit. Best of luck trying to keep this adorable graduation cap on your dog’s head!

Get your own:

Related: 70 Best High School Graduation Gifts – The Complete 2023 Guide

Graduation Party Ideas Themes 

21. Show The Adventure That Awaits 

 

College graduation marks the beginning of a brand new adventure. Adopt a party theme that reflects the start of this journey with a celebration centered around travel and new experiences. 

Get your own:

22. Traditional Black, White and Gold  

 

Image by @cafecito on Instagram

A classic black and gold theme can make any party seem elegant and sophisticated. Transform your graduation party into a stylish event by adopting these two traditional colors into your theme.

Get your own:

23. Doctor/Nurse Theme 

 

Image by @cecestudyguides on Instagram

This graduation theme is applicable for all medical professionals entering the workforce! As a friend of a few nurses who are graduating in the upcoming year, I recommended this adorable theme for their graduation party!

Make your own doctor theme:

24. Fiesta Theme

 

This theme is for graduates who like to celebrate Taco Tuesday every day. Having a “fiesta” theme for your graduation party is very unconventional, but you will most certainly stand out from the rest!

Create your own fiesta theme:

25. Dinosaur Theme

 

For all of the future paleontology graduates out there, this fun theme is for you! Give your graduation party a dinosaur theme for a memorable experience and plenty of unique stories to tell afterward!

Create your own dinosaur theme:

26. Nature Theme

 

The perfect theme for those graduates who love the outdoors. Give your party a wildlife theme to become one with nature.

Create your own nature theme:

27. Firefighter Theme

 

Becoming a firefighter is truly honorable. A selfless, hardworking profession. Celebrate your firefighter graduate with this cool theme

Create your own firefighter theme:

28. Basketball Theme

 

As a basketball player, being prepared and getting wins on the court is very important. Your basketball graduate can also get a win off the court if they prepare to throw a party with this awesome theme.

Create your own basketball theme:

29. Harry Potter Theme

 

Your graduate may not have received their letter from Hogwarts School of Witchcraft and Wizardry yet, but that does not mean that they can have a graduation party styled in this awesome theme!

Create your own Harry Potter theme:

30. Friends Theme

 

Even though it has been off the air for over a decade, Friends is still a popular television show for teenagers and adults alike. If you graduate is a fan, this theme is perfect for them!

Create your own Friends theme:

31. Police Theme

 

Celebrate the induction of a brand new officer with this ideal theme! I personally think that the themed balloons are adorable and a must-have if you are going to throw this type of party.

Create your own police theme:

32. Casino Theme

 

Your graduate may not be able to travel to Vegas for their graduation party, but who says they can’t replicate the atmosphere at home with this fun theme!

Create your own casino theme:

33. Beauty School Theme

 

If you are becoming a beautician, you need to have a party that is as glamorous as your beauty skills. With this exquisite theme, your graduation party will be stylish and elegant just like you!

Create your own beauty school theme:

34. Baseball Theme

 

Baseball is one of the most time-honored traditional sports in history. Have an awesome party for your future baseball player with this awesome theme

Create your own baseball theme:

35. Veterinarian Theme

 

This theme is for all of the animal lovers out there, which includes me! Throw a lovely party full of pet-centered decorations that will absolutely impress your friends and family.

Create your own veterinarian theme:

36. Teacher Theme

 

Image by @sofestively on Instagram 

I personally believe that teachers are the backbone of our society and they deserve to be given the best celebration. This party decor is perfect for the graduate looking to become a school teacher one day.

Create your own teacher theme:

37. Chef Theme

 

Completing culinary school is an incredibly difficult task. Congratulate your future chef graduate with the perfect party theme!

Create your own chef theme:

38. Scientist Theme

 

Impress your fellow science majors with this unique theme for your graduation party. If you have any science nerds in your friend group, they are going to love this party theme!

Create your own scientist theme:

39. Artist Theme

 

A recently graduated art student needs to have a party with a theme that is as creative and thoughtful as they are. This graduation party idea is festive and fun!

Create your own artist theme:

40. Law Theme

 

Law school can be challenging and competitive! Your law graduate deserves a wonderful party to reward them for all the hard work that they have done.

Create your own law theme:

Related: 60 Amazing Graduation Party Ideas for Guys – The Complete 2024 Guide

Graduation Party Gift Ideas For Her

41. Graduation Mug

 

Memorialize your college graduate’s special moment with a cute coffee mug. It will become especially important with all of the coffee or tea they will be drinking when they get their full-time job!

Get your own:

42. Graduation Necklace

 

Your graduate deserves the best for all the trials and tribulations they had to face over the past four years. What better gift to give your graduate than a beautiful necklace that they will cherish forever?

Get your own:

43. Graduation Plush 

 

If your graduate is a lover of stuffed animals like me, then this gift is perfect for them! Give them an adorable graduation plush to brighten up their special day. 

Get your own:

44. Graduation Ornament

 

This gift is a perfect reminder for your graduate and their achievement every time they decorate for Christmas! Give them a beautiful ornament to adorn their tree.

 Get your own:

45. Graduation Keychain 

 

Here’s a little token to show your graduate how much you care! A graduation keychain serves as a great memento of their special moment. 

Get your own:

46. Graduation Pin

 

A graduation pin on a jacket or backpack would be incredibly adorable. Make your graduate’s day with this gift!

Get your own:

47. Graduation Candle 

 

Who doesn’t appreciate a well-made candle to brighten up the darkest of rooms? Give a graduation candle to your graduate and they will thank you tenfold!

Get your own:

48. Graduation Gift Box

 

Are you a bit confused as to what present to give your graduate? Here’s a gift box that provides a nice sample of gifts that your graduate will enjoy!

Get your own:

49. Graduation Notebook

 

If your graduate is planning on pursuing graduate school, then this gift is perfect for them! Give them a graduation notebook so that they can get a head start on their studies. 

Get your own:

50. Graduation Charm

 

What a cute and timeless gift that your graduate is bound to cherish. A graduation charm is a wonderful reminder of their special moment. 

Get your own:

Related: 11 Life-changing Books Nonfiction Books For College Students to Read Before Graduation

Encapsulate your graduate’s favorite moment from their final year of school with a beautifully themed frame. You might want to buy one for everyone in your family as well so that they can cherish this memory too!

Graduation Party Ideas For Him

51. Graduation Bracelet

 

Image by @nespolijewelers on Instagram 

A piece of jewelry that your graduate will love! Give him a graduation bracelet that he will cherish forever. 

Get your own:

52. Graduation Socks 

 

Here’s an adorable graduation present for you! Grab a pair of graduation socks that your graduate is bound to enjoy. He may have procrastinated buying himself socks while in school because he wanted to use his money for other more exciting items. These socks may be just what he has needed for a long time!

Get your own socks:

53. Graduation Pocket Watch

 

This is a very thoughtful gift to give your graduate. A pocket watch is an old-fashioned present that exudes sophistication and class. 

Get your own:

54. Graduation T-Shirt

 

A piece of clothing may seem like an unusual graduation gift. However, a graduation-themed t-shirt is a stylish way of showing your graduate how much you care about them on their special day. 

Get your own:

55. Graduation Lamp

 

Here is a unique and useful gift! A graduation lamp is a perfect present for the goofball graduate in your life. 

Get your own:

56. Engraved Wallet Card

 

An engraved wallet card that is symbolic of your graduate’s special day is an excellent reminder of all that they have accomplished. 

Get your own:

57. Graduation Blanket

 

This may possibly be the coziest, comfiest, cutest present to give your graduate. A graduation blanket as a gift might be my favorite idea thus far. 

58. Graduation Paperweight

 

This gift is simple and straightforward, but very effective! A paperweight is perfect for the practical graduate! When he gets his first job out of college, he can use this paperweight to decorate his first official work desk!

Get your own:

59. Graduation Frame

 

Encapsulate your graduate’s favorite moment from their final year of school with a beautifully themed frame. You might want to buy one for everyone in your family as well so that they can cherish this memory too!

Get your own:

60. Graduation Wall Art

 

For those graduates who are moving out of their homes, a beautiful piece of wall decor would be the best gift for them. It reflects their proudest achievement and can liven up any room in their abode.

Get your own:

Related: The Best 45+ Graduation Gifts – The Complete 2024 Guide

High School Graduation Party Ideas 

61. Photo Clips with String Lights

 

What better way to celebrate the most memorable experiences you had at school than to hang your favorite pictures up at your graduation party? Use photo clips, accompanied by luminous string lights, to personalize your party!

Get your own:

62. Assemble a Charcuterie Board

Every party needs interesting appetizers to keep guests coming back for more and staying as long as they can. With an impressive cheese board, your graduation party will be given a sophisticated flair. 

Assemble your own:

63. Roll Out a Graduation Tablecloth

What better place to put oeuvres, drinks, plates, and napkins than on a festive tablecloth? A perfectly theme-appropriate tablecloth suits any graduation party nicely and adds to the atmosphere of the celebratory event! 

Get your own:

64. Play a Graduation Party Game

Test yourself on how well you know your most recent college graduate with graduation party games. This personalized trivia could liven up your graduation party in an inexpensive way. 

Get your own game:

65. Adorn Your House with Party Lights

Nothing brings out the festive mood of a party like properly-placed party lights. Illuminate your graduation party with a bunch of lights to show everyone that this is where the action is!

Get your own lights:

66. Glow Sticks

Is a party ever truly complete without glow sticks? They are suitable for every occasion, but especially for graduation parties set at night. 

Get your own:

67. Get Chalkboard Signs for Food

 

If you are planning to have a buffet for your party, then these chalkboard signs are a must! You can also save them and reuse them for your next celebration as well!

Get your own:

68. Invest in a Karaoke Microphone

 

The party never stops once someone breaks out the karaoke machine. Buy yourself a karaoke microphone to have a blast at your graduation party and other celebrations to follow. 

Get your own:

69. Make a Graduation Sign Poster

 

Want to treasure the memory of your graduation forever? Have your closest friends and family sign a graduation poster, so that you can cherish this moment with the thoughtful words of your loved ones. 

Make your own:

70. Put Up a Graduation Lawn Sign

 

A congratulatory sign provides perfect outdoor decor for your graduation party. Grab a few of them if you can, so you can adorn your lawn with as many signs as possible!

Get your own:

71. Give Your Graduate a Graduation Headband

 

This is an adorable accessory that your graduate is bound to enjoy and wear on their head for the entire party.

Get your own:

72. Blow Bubbles

 

Who says that blowing bubbles are only for kids? These bubbles will be plenty of fun for you, your friends, and the entire family!

Get your own:

73. Find Mesh Food Covers

 

Making sure that the food at your graduation party stays warm and fresh is of the utmost importance. With mesh covers to place over your food, the potential problem of food going cold is solved!

Get your own:

74. Hand Out Graduation Goodie Bags

 

To thank all of your party guests for attending your party, what you need is thoughtful party favors that will leave them thinking about your celebration long after it is over. Give out graduation goodie bags to show these guests your gratitude!

Get your own bags to hand out:

75. Get Your Grill Gear

 

Image by ATOMIC Hot Links on Flickr 

Getting good grill gear for your party is important, especially if you are graduating during the summertime. Guarantee a big barbeque at your graduation party with this useful kit!

Get your own grill gear:

76. Construct a Dessert Stand

An ideal display for scrumptious desserts! Assemble a delicious stand full of cakes, cupcakes, tarts, and other sweets for your party guests. 

Construct your own:

77. Give Out Individually Wrapped Snacks

 

Sometimes having big bowls of chips on your party table can be a little germy and the chips will eventually go stale. These mini bags are perfectly portioned snacks for you and your party guests to enjoy!

Get the snacks:

78. Distribute Individually Wrapped Silverware 

 

Nobody wants to be stuck washing the silverware after an awesome party. Keep your party table neat and organized with individually wrapped silverware to give to every guest.

Get the silverware:

79. Make Smores

 

Who doesn’t love making smores? Smores sticks are perfect for making sweet treats with your friends at your party. 

Get Smore sticks:

80. Assemble Artificial Flowers

 

What better way to beautify your house before a party than by adding lovely artificial flowers to your living room, dining room, or elsewhere? You might want to keep these up even after the party is over!

Get the supplies:

Last Thoughts

Graduation is only the beginning for many college students. Following the success of their academic career, they are presented with a variety of questions that require delicate answers.

Do they want to go to graduate school? Should they try applying for a full-time job or should they take some time off to focus on themselves? Are internships a possibility?

These are all stressful, time-consuming questions that a student has to be thinking about once they finish college. 

However, they do not have to be resolved right away. Graduates can enjoy the success of their academic achievements first and this begins with an amazing, memorable graduation party with the people that have supported them throughout their college journey.

Hopefully, these 80 graduation party ideas are only the start of your party planning activities!

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