Giving gifts for graduations is a popular practise, and – as is the case with a lot of gift-giving practises – has been heavily influenced by American culture. When your loved one graduates from university, whether it’s an undergraduate degree, a postgraduate, or even a doctorate, it’s important to celebrate the milestone.

So, what are the best silver graduation gifts you can give to ensure you’re top of the class this year?

Graduation Gifts

What is the Most Popular Graduation Gift?

The most popular choice for graduation gifts fluctuates, with certain pieces such as mugs, pens, and university-related merch like teddy bears and pins always being popular choices. If you want to make a more personal decision in your gift giving, however, think sentimentally.

Getting a gift geared towards what the graduate wants to do next is a great way to show them that you’ve been paying attention. If you know they want to travel before making their next decision, perhaps a luggage set or a travel book is a good gift. Alternatively, turn to something they’ve loved for a long time, like a treasured photo in a luxurious frame.

Graduation gifts that are remembered for a long time are usually given by a close loved one, and typically involve things the graduate cares a lot about. Go with your gut and find something that makes you think of your graduate. We always want to give them the world, but where are we supposed to draw the line when it comes to graduation gifting?

How Much Should You Spend on a Graduation Gift?

Answering this question entails establishing the connection you have with the graduate. If they’re a friend your age, and perhaps you’re also graduating, then don’t feel the need to spend more than £20. A gift card along with a greetings card, or perhaps a floral arrangement is enough to show your pride in your friend.

If they’re a family member, it’s more of an individual decision. Nieces and nephews graduating is special, and perhaps a more personal gift should go to them. If your child or even grandchild is the one graduating, however, this is where you are at a greater liberty to treat them to something special to commemorate the occasion, with gifts up to £1,000 all being valid choices. Going over this price is also acceptable depending on how much you might typically budget for a gift for your child; however, it is never necessary to give more than you can due to a growing social norm.

Once you have the perfect gift idea in mind, the natural next questions revolve around the etiquette of gift-giving and graduation time.

Graduation Gift Etiquette

Most of us who graduated in the UK in years passed may know nothing about how and when to give a graduation gift, as most gift-giving for this milestone has migrated to our culture from American culture. In America, graduation announcements are sent out, informing the graduate of their ceremony date. This, in turn, allows the graduate to inform friends and family of when they’re going to be donning the cap and gown. At this point, loved ones can send their gifts with ease.

Without this system, it’s harder to know when the right time is to send a gift, however, it is doable. If you’re close enough with the graduate, simply asking when their classes finish, or when their degree is posted and they know their final grade, is all the notification you should need. Sending a gift to them then allows them to appreciate it before the ceremony itself.

If you’re attending the graduation yourself – perhaps for your own child’s graduation – it’s recommended that you bring the gift with you if it’s feasible to do so; you can deliver the gift after the ceremony itself. If you didn’t attend the ceremony and also missed any announcement of the graduate’s final grade, it is also acceptable to send a gift after the graduation has happened. After all, you’re congratulating the graduate for their achievement after the fact, which is entirely logical and polite.

Graduation Gifts for Her

While female graduates always have the option of receiving jewellery, there are other avenues to avoid potentially being cliché in your gift-giving. If you want to give them a deeply sentimental gift, for example, consider putting a photograph from their childhood – ideally one of the two of you – in a luxurious antique silver photo frame. There are a lot of different styles of silver frame available, so whether they prefer a minimalistic look or the current trend of Regency style silverware (thanks, Bridgerton), they are sure to be delighted.

Silver Graduation Gifts
Silver Photograph Frame

If jewellery is a gift they receive often, consider gifting them a jewellery box that they can take with them wherever they decide to go next in life. Luxurious gifts such as these will be remembered for years to come, and will last the graduate the rest of their life for all of their jewellery storage needs. Truly a gift for a lifetime.

Silver Jewellery Box Gifts
Silver Jewellery Graduation Gifts

Simple, decorative silverware is also a thoughtful gift, especially for graduates who are likely to be moving to new accommodations in the coming months. If they’re about to become home-owners, or maybe continuing their study elsewhere, it’s a great idea to give them something to remind them of home. Animal related antiques are always popular choices, and some of the silver models can keep home on your graduate’s mind, wherever they may roam.

Dog gifts
Antique graduation Gifts

Graduation Gifts for Him

Male graduates often fall to similar states as females, where they are most likely to receive a tie, or perhaps a pair of cufflinks at their graduation. Changing the tides for this and ensuring that you’re giving a gift that stands out is easily achieved with antique silverware. Once again, photograph frames make for an excellent gift idea, something which they can keep with them wherever life might take them.

Silver Photograph Frame
Antique silver graduation gifts

Making note of your graduate’s interests, aspirations, and hobbies is the best way to ensure your gift has meaning for them. Perhaps they are a budding writer? In which case, a gift like an inkwell is a way to show them that you’ve been paying attention, as well as supporting them in your own way.

Sterling Silver Inkwell
Silver and Glass inkwell gifts

Common gifts that can be found in university gift shops especially for graduates are drinking vessels like mugs, tankards, and steins. Gifting something like this to your graduate is a great way of commemorating all of the ‘hard work’ they’ve done so far during their free time of their degree, as well as signalling that there will hopefully be more of the same in their future.

Sterling Silver Pint Mug
Silver Beer Gifts

With graduation season right around the corner, there’s never been a better time to think about what the graduates in your life will need for the next steps in their journeys.

Resources

https://www.cosmopolitan.com/style-beauty/fashion/g8496328/best-college-graduation-gifts/

https://www.vogue.com/article/best-graduation-gifts

https://www.self.com/story/best-graduation-gifts

https://www.businessinsider.com/guides/gifts/best-graduation-gift-ideas?r=US&IR=T

Written by

Bethany Massey

Having graduated university with a BA in English Literature and an MA in Creative Writing Bethany then joined the AC Silver team as a content creator. Bethany spends her days writing content for the AC Silver blog and other luxury goods/antique publications.