A graduation is a true cause for celebration: Whether your little one has just completed kindergarten or is moving out for college, a graduation ceremony (and the following party) is something to be relished. While most ceremonies these days strive to maintain a sense of decorum, a creative, handmade poster can demonstrate your support for your graduate without causing any major distractions, and a DIY sign can add that little extra oomph to your party decor (and even be its own graduation gift). So no matter if you choose to hand-letter a sign with a personal saying or print a life-size headshot of your loved one, try one of these ideas for the next graduation you attend.
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The Tassel Was Worth the Hassle Sign
Not too confident in your ability to hand-paint a cute sign? Try a clever print-out instead. This one can be resized to fit any poster, and its cute saying is a sure win with graduates of any age. A standard 8 1/2 by 11 print looks super cute framed and placed on a gift table, too.
Pro tip: Use washable markers or metallic paint pens to outline each bold letter after the ink has dried to introduce a little color to your design.
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Dr. Seuss Sign
Take your cue from your graduate’s favorite childhood storybook. With its focus on a positive future, Dr. Seuss’s Oh, the Places You’ll Go makes for the perfect inspiration for your homemade poster. Don’t forget the curlicue letters and bright colors to truly manifest the famous author.
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Directional Road Sign
For a whimsical way to show your support for your student, craft a multi-directional road sign from sturdy cardstock. Colorful paper and a balsa wood pole work well for this one, as do lines from a favorite poem or sentimental song lyrics.
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School Colors Sign
Perfect for a college graduate, this stylish, well-designed sign oozes with school pride. Stick to your student’s alma mater’s colors, and embellish with a touch of gold leaf or glitter. Print one off to stick to this exact design, or use masking tape, a steady hand, and paint for a more homemade version.Continue to 5 of 15 below.
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Hashtag Party Sign
Be sure to collect every single one of those precious graduation celebration photos by keeping guests informed of your party’s hashtag with these clever table-top signs. Be sure to print a sign for each area of your party so you won’t miss a single snapshot.
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Faux Chalkboard Sign
To thoroughly capture this moment in time, write your little one’s favorites onto a chalkboard-style poster. Section the sign off using cute dashed lines, fill each section with a few select memories, and don’t forget to finish everything off with a crisp graduation photo.
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Go Be Amazing Sign
A prettily designed inspirational quote is perfect for the classier graduation soiree. Looking to stay within budget? Visit a secondhand store for vintage photo frames, then spray paint them all gold for a quick facelift. Even if your finds are different sizes and shapes, they’ll look cohesive when sprayed in the same hue.
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Graduation Year Number Sign
Demonstrate a bit of class pride with a welcoming, oversized, graduation year display. This tutorial uses dried beans to anchor foam numbers into clear glass bottles, but you could easily swap those for iridescent beads, colored sand, or any other vase filler.Continue to 9 of 15 below.
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For a congratulatory sign that doubles as a graduation gift, consider making a money wreath. This version cleverly incorporates the grad’s school colors by securing each bill to the wreath form with bits of colorful yarn. This pretty present is the perfect adornment to the graduate’s card table (and if you want to add your own card with a note, select one of the infinite free printable options available online).
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Photo Collage Letters
If you consider yourself a crafter, this photo collage table decor is the perfect option. While you can definitely use color-printed photos to collage a set of letters, black-and-white looks more cohesive (and will leave more room in your budget for other party fun). G-R-A-D looks great when collaged with special photos, but your graduate’s name or future school are fantastic ideas, too.
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It’s especially fun for guests to gush over your graduate’s childhood photos, so put a select few on display with the help of a framed corkboard. For a more interactive display, encourage party guests to jot down a few words of advice to pin to the board, too—then your student can take the finished board with them on the next step of their journey.
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Interactive Memory Sharing Sign
Whether you’re throwing a big open-house or just hosting a few key supportive family members for your graduate, consider setting up a station for each person to share a personal memory with the student-of-honor. Wooden game blocks are the perfect vehicles for a customized keepsake; the graduate can take the completed game with them without feeling too sentimental.Continue to 13 of 15 below.
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Glass Case Sign
Another piece that doubles as a clever addition to a tablescape and a gift for the graduate, this clear class case is sure to be a hit with your guests and the grad alike. Simply source an extra-deep photo frame or shadow box, then stencil your letters on carefully with acrylic paint.
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Sweet Beginnings Sign
A dessert table is absolutely a treat in and of itself, but when accompanied by a cute, handwritten sign that toasts the future, it’s 100 percent perfect for a graduation party. Don’t forget to fill the table with all of your grad’s favorite sweets!