Student Life

Turn Your Graduation Cap into a Memorable Piece of Art

A student shares tips and examples of some of the best bedazzled and inspirational grad caps out there. Add a bit of sparkle to your graduation ceremony!

Student Contributor, Aleena Islam

May 03, 2022

Turn Your Graduation Cap into a Memorable Piece of Art
There is only one rule when it comes to decorating your grad cap: just be yourself!
Graduation is near! For high school and college seniors alike, these next two months bring about quite a bit of change, but one thing remains constant: the tried-and-true tradition of decorating your graduation cap! Get together with a group of friends and spend an afternoon decorating your grad caps in a way that is quintessentially you. Get creative with funky colors and sequins, stay serious with inspirational quotes, or take a walk down memory lane by using your cap to pay homage to the last four years. There is only one rule when it comes to decorating your grad cap: just be yourself! With so many different possibilities out there for grad cap art, it can be tough to figure out where to begin decorating. Here are some tips to help you get started!

Pick a Theme

When designing your grad cap, it’s helpful first to pick a theme to center your art around. Maybe you want to refer to a popular movie, show, or song? Perhaps you want to represent the colors and mascot of the college you’ll attend in the fall, or use the opportunity to declare your post-college plans. Remember that graduation caps are one of the final tokens you’ll have to remember your high school or college days, so make sure you think long and hard about a theme. Pick a theme that truly represents you!
Some themes that you can’t go wrong with are:
  • Iconic movies or TV shows.
  • This could include movies and books like Legally Blond, Finding Nemo/Dory, Friends, Harry Potter, etc.
  • Inspirational quotes.
  • such as: “Be the change you want to see in the world.” “Let the journey begin.” “Go and live your dreams.” “And off she went.” “If your dreams don’t scare you, they aren’t big enough.”
  • Political activism quotes.
  • These are increasingly popular as political advocacy is becoming more common.
  • Popular memes from the school year.
  • A quote from a song or book that got you through school.
  • Stock Up on Supplies

    Once you know how you want to decorate your cap, it’s time for the fun part–getting supplies! Make a day of it with your friends and hit your local arts and crafts store and dollar store. While you should probably invest in high-quality glue and markers from a crafts store, you can probably find cheap glitter, sequins, ribbons, stickers, etc., at a dollar store. Cool Décor Elements to Use To make your grad cap art really stand out, use some of these unique décor elements on your cap!
  • Faux flowers
  • Buttons
  • Glitter glue
  • Ribbons and bows
  • Sticker letters
  • Stickers of movie or T.V. show characters
  • And more!
  • The possibilities are truly endless.

    Social Media Inspiration

    Social media, especially TikTok, Instagram, and Pinterest, can be wonderful sources of inspiration! Here are some great pages and Pinterest boards to check out to help you design your own grad cap. @SHOPMYTM on TikTok This TikTok account has great ideas for grad cap art as well as other fun graduation keepsakes. They feature Mean Girls-themed caps to caps showcasing college majors.

    Ridin Dirty Custom Cap Topper. Real Lights on the car. To order: #Fyp #foryourpage #classof2021

    ♬ Ridin' - Album Version (Edited) - Chamillionaire

    Criminal Justice Theme Grad Cap #gradcap #gradcapdesign #gradcapchallenge #gradcapidea #classof2021 #2021grad #2021graduate #graduation #2021grads

    ♬ My Chick Bad - Album Version (Explicit) - Ludacris
    @CREATIVELY.BRIE on TikTok Bria Nicole, the designer behind this account, features many examples of grad cap art on her TikTok page. See everything from medicine-themed to Marvel for movie lovers out there!

    Working on a medical themed cap design️ #fyp #artist #graduation #gradcap #foryou #smallbusinesscheck

    ♬ Pure Imagination cover by Angelo Javier - LEUG

    It was Agatha all along #gradcapdesign #wandavision #agathaallalong #mcu #marvel #wandavisionepisode9 #fyp

    ♬ Agatha All Along - Kristen Anderson-Lopez & Robert Lopez
    Graduation Cap Decorations Board on Pinterest This professional board has dozens of beautiful and creative graduation cap ideas. This board is filled with inspirational quotes and many Disney-themed caps, like a Walt Disney quote and a reference to Tangled. Grad Cap Ideas Board on Pinterest This board features homier grad cap art, with some caps boasting working lights and bows. While graduation may seem like a slightly scary prospect, add a little bit of your own flair to the day with your graduation cap. There are infinite possibilities when it comes to making your grad cap art! Hopefully, this article has helped you figure out where to begin, and I hope you have endless fun while decorating!

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