7 Graduation Party Ideas with Affordable DIY Projects

graduation ideas for party

Graduation is an important milestone, and you can celebrate it in creative ways. Many graduation party ideas only need a little creativity and small budget to be fun.

Here are some great ideas to apply in a graduation party for high school or university students.

1. Graduation Party Ideas Decorations

outdoor graduation decoration party


Put special emphasis on the graduates with personalized party decorations, like the bags in the above picture.

You can buy mortarboards with different colors, and stick a label with name and congratulatory greeting on them.

If graduation caps are too obvious, you can try some of these DIY ideas:

  • Fold paper sheets and cut them into triangles, and turn them into a simple banner with a long string.
  • For girl graduates, add sparkly elements such as glitter, silvery paper, and crystal beads in regular party decorations.
  • Print various inspirational quotes, frame them and scatter them on various spots in the venue.

To make the decorations more believable, you should use your school colors, and even incorporating the mascots.

2. Creative Graduation Photo Arrangements

Involve your favorite school photos into creative arrangements. Attach photos of your friends on one side of the wall, and add several unique decorations that reflect your school or your activities as a student.

You can create a “memory board” by printing the best graduation pictures. Attach them on flat boards.

Give them to each guest that graduate at the same time with you. Ask for each other’s signatures, with comments about the most memorable high school moments.

3. Unique Party Foods and Snacks

graduation ideas for party


Cheap food and snacks that are served creatively can be great graduation party ideas. Arrange various finger foods and snacks on a separate table, with white tablecloth and decorations with school colors. This is great for a poolside or bar-style party.

You can also serve candies and M&M’s in containers shaped like the graduation’s years. You can make them from small (clean) cardboards wrapped in gift paper. Take their pictures from above to adorn your Instagram album.

Upgrade popular snacks by creating smiley faces with graduation caps from marzipan, and put them on top of Oreo cookies.

Create graduation cupcakes with chocolate cake, chocolate-covered crackers on top, and marzipan tassels.

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4. Simple but Memorable Party Favors

 graduation party


Appreciate your guests by preparing party favors with a personal touch. Personalize the wrappings with the picture of the graduate(s), complete with name and personal message. The gift wraps or boxes can use the school’s colors.

The gifts can be simple, but still memorable. Here are some ideas:

  • Fill a plastic bag with colorful candies and gumballs that have school/college colors. Add personal message cards.
  • Order photo frames with a large surface. Write the year of the graduation on one corner with acrylic paint. You can also add short, personal message.
  • Bake mortarboard-shaped cookies in slightly large size. Top them with a frosting of any color. Wrap them individually for each guest.

These simple party favors will add the fun element in any graduation party ideas, even with limited budgets.

5. Graduation-themed Centerpieces

Graduation-themed Centerpieces


Highlight your party decoration by creating a welcoming table with graduation-themed centerpieces.

Hang banners with the school colors and cheerful congratulations. Put all the party favors and souvenirs on the table, and make sure they are color-coordinated.

Get creative with centerpieces and decorations. Cut foams into individual numbers of graduation year.

Roll colored tissue paper and cover the foam with these little rolls. Make the numbers stand on the table with sticks and bottles.

6. Indoor Graduation Party Games

Indoor Graduation Party Games


There are many indoor graduation party games perfect for all ages. Turn a dance music and ask a couple to start dancing in the middle.

Each of them then asks another person to dance with funny and creative ways, until everyone dancing.

Share “One is a lie” stories. Each person describes three things about himself or herself, but one of them is a lie.

Everyone must guess which one is not true. Tally up the numbers and prepare a nice gift for the winner.

For more mature graduates, Las Vegas-inspired card games can be a daring choice. Poker, 21-1, and Blackjack are popular games anyone can quickly learn and enjoy.

7. Outdoor Graduation Party Games

outdoor graduation party games


Get rowdy with these outdoor graduation games for all ages! Bobbing for apples, limbo, and paint water battle will make everyone sweating and happy.

You can also arrange an outdoor “dance competition,” where each person dances in front of three “judges”, a la reality show.

Crossdress match is a silly but fun idea. Create two big piles of ridiculous boy’s and girl’s costumes, complete with outlandish accessories.

Two people must compete in wearing the clothes from opposite genders, and be judged for the creativity.

The treasure hunt is a complicated but rewarding outdoor fun. You must prepare the clues and routes days before.

Make sure each clue is related to you and your friends’ experiences at school. The prizes can be something special but useful, like a travel mug or messenger bag.

A student’s special day is worthy of remembrance. These graduation party ideas will create nice memories when everyone continues to the next life stage.

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