It feels like everyone I know is graduating. I have college girlfriends who are finishing up grad school, sorority sisters who are somehow seniors, and friends’ siblings who are off to college in the fall. After a couple emails from readers asking what to give new grads in their lives, I decided to round up my best ideas for pretty and practical gifts they’ll actually use in their next chapter.
Whether they’re headed off to campus or moving to a new city, every new grad could use a little luggage upgrade. This vegan leather weekender is only $70 but you’ll find more splurge-worthy options here and here.
Chances are they’re moving to a new place and decorating it on a budget. Be careful to give them a piece that’s easy to incorporate into any decorating style. My parents gave me this acrylic console for my college graduation and I like knowing I’ll always have a place for it either as a console or a desk.
3. Leather goods
Bonus points for adding a monogram. This is a great option for treating them to something they might not buy themselves, like a classic briefcase for a guy or a timeless clutch for a girl.
4. Desk accessories
A great gift that’s both thoughtful and affordable. A monogrammed pencil cup, business card holder, and tape dispenser will ensure they have the prettiest desk in their dorm or office.
Dorm rooms and apartment rentals aren’t known for their flattering overhead lighting. Instead of adding lamps to their shopping list at Ikea or Target, give them something special (like this Dana Gibson beauty) that will last them more than one year’s lease.
6. A reminder of where they come from… or where they’re headed
A meaningful piece of art always makes a great gift. I love this New York print for anyone who’s bound for the Big Apple but this Etsy shop has gorgeous pieces for every city.
7. Travel accessories
Upgrade from their shower caddy to a luxe leather case and a gorgeous luggage tag that will make them think of you every trip they take.
8. A coffee or espresso machine
…or maybe a really generous Starbucks card just in case.