The Best Graduation Gifts to Help Them Take on the World
They did it, and now you can't wait to see where they go next. Whether your graduate is college-bound or entering the work force for the first time, there's one thing they need: a little bit of help. Funnily enough, preparing for dorm life and real life present similar challenges. Chances are, they'll be short on space and time, and need to stock up on those life essentials to get them through. That's where you come in. While you're there to help in more ways than one—easing pre-college jitters or first-day-of-job nerves is priority number one—give them a hand with the prep work by saying "Congratulations!" with one of the following gifts.
On the high-school grad front, help them curate a stylish dorm room with a bedding set that will carry them through all four years. Another option is to help save them (and their wallet) the morning trip to the subpar on-campus coffee bar by gifting your graduate a machine that will have their brew ready by the time they're finished brushing their teeth down the hall. Toasting to a recent college grad who just landed his or her very first job? Gift them a desk set that will make their cubicle feel more like their own. A sleek keyring that will make holding those first apartment keys feel that much better is also a thoughtful idea.
Wherever your rock star is headed, these gifts will get them ready for the journey. In fact, you'll find that most of these present ideas speak to both high school and college grads, which makes choosing that much easier. Ahead, some of our favorite options—they will soon be theirs, too.
Food Storage Set
Help them keep track of their newly-minted business cards with this case. You can add their monogram to make it that much more special.
Shop Now: Leatherology Slim Card Case, $40, leatherology.com.
This tote corrals schoolbooks and laptops with ease. We like that it's easy on the eyes, too.
Shop Now: Ban.do Puffy Tote in Eucalyptus, $68, bando.com.
This candle works for all types of grads: It either reminds them of a place they know well or reminds them of the place they should be right now.
Shop Now: Byredo Bibliothèque Candle, $85, spacenk.com.
Accented with bright enamel, this keyring makes those first apartment keys feel that much more special.
Shop Now: Craighill "Wilson" Enameled Keyring, $18, craighill.co.
Present your liberal arts college-bound graduate with this luxe notebook—they'll take its sentiment literally and use it for jotting down future novel (as in plot) ideas.
Shop Now: Smythson "Novel Ideas" Premier Notebook, $105, smythson.com.
The library was always nice and quiet, but in the workforce, it isn't always that way. Give them the gift of silence with these state-of-the-art headphones. The retro look is a great conversation starter.
Shop Now: Panasonic Retro Over-Ear Monitor Headphones, $90, panasonic.com.
The transparent side panels take the guesswork out of doneness (is the toast brown enough?). Plus, designed to last 30,000 uses, this toaster could still be around for your graduate's own child's graduation.
Shop Now: Magimix by Robot-Coupe Vision Toaster, $249, williams-sonoma.com.
Graduation means entering adulthood. So does upgrading to a sophisticated soap made with food-grade oils and natural fragrances.
Shop Now: Saipua Vetiver with French Green Clay Soap, $18, beautyhabit.com.
No matter how far they roam, they'll always have a slice of home with a custom-ordered cutting board shaped like their native state. Made of Plyboo, or bamboo plywood, the boards are available in all 50 state shapes.
Shop Now: AHeirloom State Cutting Board, from $60, etsy.com.
For the dorm-room dweller who's short on space (and time), this machine has a tiny footprint and brews a great cup in a minute.
Shop Now: Keurig K-Mini Plus Coffee Maker, $99.99, bedbathandbeyond.com.
Book of Life
Graduate. Get job. Get married. Start family. But here's a memoir that shows what can happen when you subvert the usual narrative (and set up a home on a houseboat, say).
Shop Now: My Heart Wanders: a Celebration of Taking Risks and Making a Home Wherever You Are by Pia Jane Bijkerk, $27.78, blackwells.co.uk.