Graduation Party Ideas
Both my daughter and stepdaughter graduated from high school last year, and I have one more left in high school. There is so much to do, party decorations, graduation announcements, party food, and graduation gifts before graduation day it's best to start early.
In rural Nebraska graduation parties are a BIG event. Everyone is invited and it's a giant open house for anyone who knows the students or family. Many parents, OK Mothers, start thinking of ideas the year before at the graduation parties for the previous class. It's also when we start crying when we think of our children graduation and moving away to college.
Decorating Made Simple
Easy and Quick
Is there such as thing as making decorating easy? I think so. Think big, think shortcuts. Streamers are easy to string across the ceiling and balloons hung in bunches. Pick a single color theme and throw a secondary color into the mix. Senior classes often have special colors, or you can decorate with the school colors.
In my case the colors are black, silver, and white. I've had two boys graduate from high school and my daughter is a senior this year. I've learned a few things from those two parties and am going to do it different this year. For one, I'm starting early.
Table Decorations - Table Decorations for a Graduation Party
Decorating your tables is the biggest way to set a theme for your graduation party.
1. Start with the table coverings, they come in every color to match your party theme, but black goes with any color and you can use colored balloons and accent for the theme color.
2. Add centerpieces, they can be handmade or your can make it easy by purchasing table decorations in themed colors.
Considering I was on a budget and had five kids to decorate for in the future I chose simple centerpieces that I could store and reuse in the future. Each child had a different color for their theme, but the black and white graduation decorations made fantastic accent pieces at each party.
Graduation Picture Frames - Senior Picture Frames
A high school graduation party is an opportunity to display senior pictures of your graduate. It's a milestone to mark with unique and special photo displays that represents your childs high school "career".
Photo display boards, collages, mosaics and lots of picture frames are just a few ideas to display the pride you have in your son or daughter.
Basic Balloon Essentials - The complete balloon kit.
Balloons are a necessity at a graduation party. A party just isn't complete without colorful balloon. Here is everything you will need for a festive graduation party. Balloons, clips, weights, helium, and an electric pump to blow up the balloons so Uncle Harry won't have a heart attack.
Curly ribbon, no balloon party is complete without curly ribbon. It's cheap, it's color coordinated and versatile. Really, I can't describe this stuff any better, it's like tape, you just need it.
There is actually quite a bit to think about when assembling your party box to get ready.
Helium Balloons - Save money, Fill at Home
Helium balloons are fun and make great centerpieces and balance the air filled balloons hanging from the ceiling and bunched as accents. I like to have a balance of helium specialty balloons and air filled at a graduation party. There are many graduation mylar balloons to choose from that will act as a highlight to the festivities.
If you live in town, unlike me, it's pretty easy to find a grocery store, or party store to fill helium balloons. But if you live in the country and have to drive these balloons long distance juggling balloons in the car and getting them out can be a challenge. Put this image in your mind, you have two bundles of balloons, the wind is whipping and you're juggling the car door, ribbons, and balloons trying to escape.
A better solution is to purchase a disposable helium tank which will fill 20-30 balloons conveniently inside.
Graduation Card Box
In the past I've put out a basket for cards and even made my own custom box for guest to place their cards. However this time around my daughter is having her party with two other friends and we're expecting probably over 200 people. It's a lot safer to have a card box for guests to put their cards in each box.
You can also make a graduation card box by covering a box with graduation wrapping paper and cutting a hole in the top.
Graduation Bobbleheads of Your Senior - Fun Personalized Graduation Party Novelty
Personalized custom bobble head statuettes of your high school senior are a fun way to celebrate your son or daughters graduation and make a unique table decoration to the cake table or card table at graduation.
They are easy to order, just submit a photo with your order and characteristics, hair color and the result will look like the person you are honoring.
Graduation Candy Favors
Customized photo decorations
Candy and snacks are common additions for a party and daughters graduation I created custom candy favors with their senior pictures. They were such a hit I set up an Etsy store for others to order personalized candy wrappers.
The nice thing about doing candy wrappers is they can be made in advance. My daughter and I sat at the kitchen tble one Sunday afternoon and it was nice to just stop the hectic pace, slow down and do something together quietly.
So much of graduation preparations are spent hectically going from store to store, shopping for table cloths, banners, streamers, getting a dress for the ceremony and not spent together.
Graduation Cupcakes - An alternative to a graduation cake
Seniors want their graduation party to be unique, like themselves. Many are foregoing the traditional graduation cake for cupcakes. Cupcakes can be decorated in many different ways, with different color frosting and are versatile in they can express a variety of hobbies just by using various cupcake toppers and decorations.
Just like the baby box, each one of my kids has a graduation box which contains samples of their decorations, graduation cards, tassel, and other memories of the day.
Need to send a cupcake home? Does your guest have several parties to go to in one day and just can't eat another piece of cake, or cupcake? Simply box a cupcake to go, it's as easy as that.
Is Your School Big or Small - There were 32 in my daughters class
I live in a very small community in eastern Nebraska. People are often surprised when I tell them that between Murdock and Elmwood we have fewer than 1200 in both towns. Our graduating senior classes average around 30 students. You heard right. There is approximately 120 student in the entire high school.
Myself, I grew up in Connecticut and had 256 in my graduating senior class. I won't tell you how long ago that was, but we're coming up on a big reunion soon.
Custom Photo Graduation Banners - Make your graduation party personal with personalized decorations
Banners banners everywhere, there is no faster way to decorate the walls, garage doors, or side of the building than hanging a large graduation banner. Better yet, have a custom banner made with your graduates senior picture.
Living in a small town is an experience during graduation season. Parties are pretty much open houses and family clean out the garage, the Morton building, barn, and rent out the local fire hall for graduation parties. During May signs and banners go up in yards on party day to celebrate the event.
If your party is in a converted garage and easy way to decorate is hang tarps over the walls, to hide the tools, shovels and other "stuff", then string streamers to create a festive atmosphere.
Inspirational Posters Speak Words of Wisdom - Advice to take with you on life's journey
Parents want to give words of wisdom and advice to their kids at momentous times during life, such as graduations and weddings. But, kids don't listen to their parents until later in life, especially high school graduates.
Instead of stumbling with the right words to say in a way they will remember give a gift that will always remind them of their roots, of the advice and of home. Help them decorate their dorm room, apartment, or first home with scripture and words of wisdom.
This inspirational poster from Jeremiah 29:11 fits the bill and hopefully will remind my daughter that God has a plan for the future and to continue to hope and pray.
Graduation Decorations on eBay - Search for bargains
I'm a bargain shopper and eBay is a great place to find large quantities of similar decorations for pennies. Don't forget eBay for bargains and unique decorations. Many school have senior receptions, dinners, and special parties. Think about purchasing graduation decorations for the school and donating to the class.
The beauty of starting early is I can change my mind. Let me know what worked for you.
Add your Decorating Tip
Dawn Romine (author) from Nebraska on May 21, 2014:
@CherylsArt: Hopefully I'll be around in a few years. I think there is a separate list needed for the graduating college student. I'll have to give it some thought.
CherylsArt on May 21, 2014:
You've got some great ideas here. I've got one graduating from college in a couple of years.
Dancing Cowgirl Design from Texas on May 19, 2014:
Sounds like fun. This is the month for all the parties.
Cynthia Sylvestermouse from United States on May 18, 2014:
What a fabulous collection of graduation party decorations and suggestions. I love the little graduate cupcake! I will certainly have to thank DecoratingforEvents for directing me you way today on Review This!
JenniferAkers LM on May 08, 2014:
Great ideas for graduation parties! My nephew is graduating high school this year; next year, my son will graduate both high school and a 2-year AA degree from college. I'm saving your lens for ideas - thank you!
Nancy Tate Hellams from Pendleton, SC on May 08, 2014:
Great graduation party ideas and products. I especially like the tiered cup cake holder. We used one similar for the refreshments at the Bachalaureate service several years ago. My friend's husband made it and it looked great on the serving table.
Dawn Romine (author) from Nebraska on March 02, 2014:
@shellys-space: They are very neat, I've seen them used here at parties.
Shelly Sellers from Midwest U.S.A. on March 02, 2014:
I love the idea of using a banner with a picture of the graduate at your party!
Dawn Romine (author) from Nebraska on February 20, 2013:
@TheLittleCardShop: Hmm. I'm doing a video as well, that's another lens. But I hadn't thought about giving an option to buy it. I might just think about it.
Malu Couttolenc on February 20, 2013:
Awesome graduation party decorations. My grad didn't have as many ecorations but for my daughter's we printed cards with all the names in the class. Also we asked everyone to email us photos an we made a slide show with them, everyone was crying but it was really cute. We gave the option to buy the slideshow DVD and almost everyone bought it.