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Hats Off to the Class of 2019!

When it comes to taking pride in their personal accomplishments, these college graduates got creative—shining through in a sea of matching gowns.

The trend of decorating graduation caps has been around for some time. However, thanks to Pinterest and Instagram, what used to be a simple “Hi Mom” eked out of masking tape has morphed into elaborate, artistic creative expressions. From pop culture inspiration to professional aspirations, students are expressing themselves—their learning experiences, their identities and personal brands, even their career choices—through their graduation cap designs.

We’ve compiled some of our favorite grad caps from the Class of 2019. Congratulations on all of your hard work, both in college and on these amazing creations! To quote The Office’s  Michael Scott, “May your hats fly as high as your dreams.”

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A post shared by Anakarina Mora Faneite (@moraamoraamoraa) on

Game of Thrones is a cultural phenomenon—a wildly successful TV show, literary opus, and (who knew?!) a study guide for finals. It also serves as the perfect inspiration for a clever and topical graduation cap. Pulling from the Tyrion Lannister quote, “I drink and I know things,” this cap would be perfect for any student who’s mastered the balance between socializing and studying.

Finally done with this BS


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For the graduate who is both sassy and sweet, this cap hits the nail on the head. The Bachelor of Science–based pun, softened by a floral border, is both fun and edgy—but not far enough over the edge to get the wearer yanked off the field mid-ceremony.

I worked hard so my dog could have a better life


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Calling all canine parents! This sentiment is both funny and true—because, really, think of all the designer doggy clothing, puppy pampering, and luxe bedding you can buy for your pet as your new career begins to take off!

I came, I saw, I contoured


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A post shared by Miss Tillie 👑🍫✨ (@teamtillie) on

Veni, vedi, vici …Vinylic Lip? This cap will catch the eye of anyone fashion and beauty obsessed. We spoke to the artist commissioned for this piece and she told us it takes her about 2 hours to complete a graduation cap. “The inspiration behind each is different. This particular one was inspired by the client, who is an aspiring makeup artist. She gave me her thoughts and this was the end result.”

More to come but first a nap


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A post shared by Eileen Rasmussen (@raspberryeclair) on

This graduation cap shares a sentiment that every student, graduating or not, can relate to. New grad Eileen Rasmussen said of landing on this design, “I want people to know that there are more ‘great’ things to come in my future; graduating college is only a small step in my long journey to live my life to its fullest. But … I also really enjoy taking naps, and now I can do that without having to plan around schoolwork!”

Beyoncé inspired


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Quoting lyrics from Queen Bey’s song “Formation,” this cap pairs “I dream it, I work hard, I grind ’til I own it” with a painting of Beyoncé herself. Not only does the quote speak to the tenacity and industriousness of its wearer but the image itself is another collegiate nod. The painting is of the cover of Beyoncé’s Homecoming, her live performance and documentary of the same name inspired by HBCUs.

Quoting Frida Kahlo


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A post shared by Mire 🌻 (@miss_mireya_) on

For her personalized graduation cap, Instagram user @miss_mireya_ selected the quote, “I am my own muse. I am the subject I know best. The subject I want to know better,” paired with an illustration of the quote’s author, Frida Kahlo. On selecting this quote the recent grad said, “[It] spoke to me because I’ve had a lot of ups and downs throughout my college career. I have grown so much since I embarked on this journey. I have learned a lot of things, not only academically but also about myself. I want to continue to explore who I am. I want to become the best I can be, and having a college degree is a step closer to becoming the best version of myself!”



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College provides the building blocks to a successful career, and Legos are, well, literal building blocks. So it makes sense that the two snap together on Michigan State grad Echo Huan’s mortarboard. Huan drew inspiration from her lifelong Lego obsession as a way to personalize her graduation look. Of her throwback to childhood, she told us that everyone who saw it loved it!

Thank you


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College can be one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences of young adulthood, and most of us wouldn’t have been able to do it without a strong support system. 2019 graduate An Nguyen chose the phrase, “Thank you for your part in my journey” paired with beautiful hand-painted flowers. It’s a lovely way to thank everyone who played a part, large or small, in your collegiate experience.

Engineering your future


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There’s a plethora of graduation cap designs based on major, and you better believe they include a lot of puns. From “Holy Molar, I flossin did it!'” to “Now I’m like this cylinder, I’m graduated,” they all give major humor. But it’s not just dentists and scientists having all the fun; this Texas State University graduation cap sends thanks to the graduate’s parents for engineering them the right way, which is both clever and grateful.

Eye spy


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Aspiring optician Priscilla Ramos (@fashionmodelpriscilla) celebrated her newly minted degree with this sparkly floral visual celebration and pun, “Eye did it!” She told us about a particularly poignant moment in her commencement ceremony when “the speaker gave the advice, ‘Give yourself permission to figure it out along the way.’ I feel like that’s what I’ve always done, and it’s so true: No matter what, just keep pushing.”

She eaRNed it!


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Photographer Vanessa Ray snapped this photo during the Monroe County Community College graduation ceremony. It highlights a nursing student’s pearl-encrusted cap, emblazoned with the phrase “eaR.N.ed not given,” which is a testament to how hard she and all of the graduates have worked.

We wish all the hard-working graduates of the Class of 2019, decorated cap or not, congratulations on a job well done!

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