Graduation Party Checklist: Theme and Decorations

Not sure where to start with your graduation planning? Welcome to our graduation party checklist, a series of posts on what you can be doing right up until graduation day!

Sometimes graduation party planning starts with a theme, and sometimes the theme creates itself based on the party location, an unusual activity or food idea. We don’t think it’s essential to pick a theme for your grad party, but it definitely helps to have a way to tie everything together! Here are a few theme ideas that incorporate graduation party decorations, food ideas, activities and more.

School Colors
High school colors make a simple theme and one that’s easy to carry off. Since they’re usually easy to find, these basic colors can be incorporated into foods (like frosting) and graduation party decorations. See our Classic Graduation Party Pinterest board for ideas.

Sports or a Hobby
If your grad has an activity or hobby that has defined his or her high school years, it’s natural to use that as your party theme. See our All Star Graduation Party for ways to bring a sports theme (or any other theme) to life!

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Graduation Announcement Ideas – Interactive Spinner Card

Looking for graduation announcement ideas to make a statement this year? Check out our new spinner graduation announcements! Continue reading

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Graduation Party Checklist: Order Invitations

Not sure where to start with your graduation planning? Welcome to our graduation party checklist, a series of posts on what you can be doing right up until graduation day!

We hear a lot of questions about graduation announcements and invitations, and the most often asked question is, “What’s the difference?” Here’s the answer, and a few more tips that will get you started shopping for graduation invitations!

Graduation Announcements & Invitations -- Big Impression Graduation Announcements & Invitations -- Chalk Monogram
Announcements or Invitations? Once upon a time graduation announcements were sent to notify friends and relatives of the actual graduation ceremony. Gradually, as parties have gotten more popular, announcements have been supplemented or replaced by open house invitations. These days the terms are used interchangeably to mean the same thing. Whether you call it an announcement or an invitation, what you put on it is up to you!

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Graduation Announcement Wording

Graduation Announcements -- Check It Out Graduation Announcements -- Make Your Mark Ribbon Booklet
If you have a high school senior in the house, you are probably juggling college decisions, summer job searches, party planning, prom, a growing case of senior-itis and thousands of other things. We’re here to help you check one thing off your list: the graduation announcements. The good news is they’re fun and easy to do. If you have a senior portrait, or some other photos you’d like to include, you are halfway done! The other big part is deciding on your graduation announcement wording.

Graduation announcements and invitations come in all shapes and sizes, and the difference between an announcement and an invitation is all in the wording. These days, the terms are used interchangeably, and usually the wording can be customized to your needs. Before you can decide on the graduation announcement wording, you’ll have to answer a few questions:

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What’s Hot This Month – March

Here’s a look at the top five products others are buying at Pear Tree Greetings this month!

1. Graduation Announcements & Invitations — Favorite Photo Vertical
Graduation Announcements & Invitations -- Favorite Photo Vertical

2. Collage Graduation Announcement — Grad Snapshots
Collage Graduation Announcement -- Grad Snapshots

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Glam Graduation Party Ideas

Every graduation party has its own vibe. And the best way to make the party your own is to start with your grad. What are her interests? How can you use her personality to come up with a party theme? Here are a few easy ways to incorporate your grad’s story into your graduation party ideas. We’ve chosen a girl’s pink and gold glitter theme, but the same ideas and design elements can work for any theme.

What girl doesn’t love a little glitter in her life? We made this party extra sparkly with our Glam Grad Graduation Announcements, and sprinkled gold glitter accents everywhere!
Graduation Announcements -- Glam Grad Horizontal Photo
A girly party like this calls for a girly meal. We made adorable chicken salad sandwich triangles and fruit kabobs on skewers. You could also add some fresh veggies displayed neatly. For the beverages we chose lemonade with coordinating pink striped paper straws and edible glitter rims on the milk glasses. To get the glitter rim we dipped the glasses in some vanilla and then dipped them in edible glitter or sugar sprinkles. For the backdrop on this glam table setup we used our Glam Grad Gold Party Decorations and stuck them to the wall in a fun gradient/fading pattern.
Graduation Party Ideas
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5 Graduation Invitations, 20 Ways

If you think your graduation announcements have to look exactly like the one featured on our website, you’re in for a surprise. Watch our video, 5 Graduation Invitations, 20 Ways, to see how you can create a whole new look by incorporating your own unique graduation announcement ideas. Your color choices, photo treatments and personal details like memories or future plans are graduation announcement ideas that set your graduation announcements apart.

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Featured Favorite

Real cards created by real people like you!

Graduation Announcement Ideas
When our designers are creating graduation invitation ideas, they envision them being chosen by families just like this one, proud of their son and wanting to celebrate his big achievement the same way they got there—as a family.

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Graduation Party Checklist: Make Guest List & Pick Location

Not sure where to start with your graduation planning? Welcome to our graduation party checklist, a series of posts on what you can be doing right up until graduation day!

First on your to-do list: Make a guest list and choose a location! You can’t decide on a location without knowing approximately how much room you need, so the guest list is the first place to start. On the other hand, if you already have a location in mind, or a set budget, these things will dictate how many people you can invite. Here are a few things to keep in mind when creating your guest list.
Graduation Invitations -- One Big Photo Chalkboard Profile Cards -- Big Impression
You can control the number of adult guests who attend by sending graduation invitations, but you may never get a firm number on how many of your son’s or daughter’s friends are coming. Word travels fast. When in doubt, it’s better to overestimate than underestimate. One suggestion for keeping the numbers under control is to order mini graduation announcements they can hand out at school.
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Graduation Party Checklist

Planning a graduation party and not sure where to start? We can help! Our graduation party checklist will take you through every step to make sure you don’t forget a thing.
updated grad checklist

6 MONTHS TO 6 WEEKS BEFORE PARTY

  • Make your guest list – don’t forget the parents of your grad’s friends, neighbors, coaches, mentors, and extra special teachers.
  • Choose the location – keep in mind that at least half your guests will be teens (and you probably won’t know how many, until they show up).
  • Set a date and time – try to avoid conflicts with close friends’ parties or your grad may be begging to leave his own party.
  • Set the theme – it might be based on a favorite food, school colors, or an activity.
  • Start collecting photos and memorabilia for party decorations – make digital copies of photos so you can use them in lots of ways.
  • Decide on a menu and book caterer if using one – does your senior have a favorite food or restaurant?
  • Order graduation party invitations – just enough for the adults on your list. (Check out our mini graduation announcements for classmates.)
  • Order coordinating thank you cards and address labels, and stock up on stamps.

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