Graduation Party Ideas

by Nancy on May 7, 2010

For an update with more ideas see our April 2011 articles Creative DIY Graduation Announcements and Quick and Easy Ideas for High School Graduation Parties.


For many families, May and June bring graduation parties. Our friend and party-giver extraordinaire, Shannon, is always in demand at this time of year helping friends put together fun, personalized graduation parties. Here are some of her great ideas:

  • Use the graduate’s school colors for decorations. This simplifies everything!
  • A quick decoration idea is to create a display of items highlighting your graduate’s life (academic awards, sports awards, medals, trophies,  a school sports uniform, photographs of the graduate from babyhood to senior pictures.) Finish off the display with a festive balloon bouquet in the school’s colors. Scattering balloon bouquets around the party areas of your home instantly creates a party feel.
  • Table decorations: a runner or center piece with pictures of the graduate from toddler to graduation.  Personalized M&M’s in the themed colors with your child’s name, congratulations, and/or class of 2010!  If you order a month in advance  Jones Sodas will create custom bottles with your graduate’s picture and name, class year, etc… Shannon ordered hers at Wal-Mart.  A cake or cupcakes are a must!  The party invitation or yet another picture can be put on the cake.  Sprinkle confetti on the table around the cake.
  • A DVD of 18 years of life for the guest of honor to be played at some point during the party. Be merciful to your guests, if you’re creating a DVD make it short and sweet (no more than 15 minutes.)
  • Qdoba restaurant is a great option if you want food catered at a reasonable price.  They  deliver and set up your buffet table. Teens love their food (be sure and order extra!) You can use napkins and utensils they provide but if you want to carry your party theme further use clear plastic ware, wrap up individual sets in a colored napkin and tie it off with a coordinating ribbon. Place in a cute metal bucket at the beginning of the buffet line table.
  • And, if you feel like you need one more thing you can always piece together a t-shirt quilt of your kid’s life. Shannon did this and adds, “I don’t recommend this if you’d like to keep your sanity!” A Quicker Option Idea from Nancy: I  saved my kids t-shirts but wasn’t organized like Shannon and didn’t have a quilt made. I strung up a clothes line and hung a variety of t-shirts on it. My kids loved it.

April 2011: Are you a soon-to-be college mom? Need some sensible experienced college mom advice? Visit our new companion blog…Practical College Moms.

{ 2 comments… read them below or add one }

Lori May 7, 2010 at 11:46 pm

Next year I’ll have a daughter graduating from college. (Where did the time go?) Thanks for the ideas!
.-= Lori´s last blog ..Make Your Own Pincushion =-.

Julie April 24, 2011 at 1:17 pm

For my graduation party my mom made me this chocolate cake, the cool part (I thought) were the “graduation diplomas” that topped the cake:

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