Surprise the graduates in your life with a gift that will unravel tons of fun! I own a brick and mortar business where we employ teenage girls and every year I try to come up with a creative gift idea that doesn’t break the bank. This year we have nine girls graduating, so I thought it would be a hoot to gift them little items that are not only meaningful to our business, but also remind them not to take themselves so seriously, even if they are “growing up.” By gifting silly trinkets in a graduation DIY surprise ball, you’re guaranteed to have smiles for miles!
- Crepe Paper in Colors of Your Choosing (I used Yellow, Light Pink, Fuchsia and Light Blue)
- Small Gold Brads
- Black Cardstock
- Low Temp Hot Glue
- Embroidery Floss
- Small Gift Items (Silly trinkets, candy, etc; I found mine in the Target dollar spot)
If you’ve never heard of surprise balls before, they’re basically just balls made by wrapping fun little gift items inside strips of crepe paper, building upon each item as you go in layers. There’s really no rhyme or reason, other than starting with your largest item first seems to work best. To start your surprise balls, cut long strips of crepe paper by folding the crepe paper rolls in half. I find that the thinner strips help cover the items easier, but you could certainly leave out this step.
Starting with your largest gift item, begin wrapping one long strip of crepe paper around it until it is fully covered. I chose to make each of my layers a different color for an added surprise. So I cut the crepe paper and added a bit of hot glue to hold it in place.
Layer your next trinket on top of the first and fully wrap it with the second color of crepe paper. Repeating the dab of hot glue and trimming of the excess crepe paper once covered.
Repeat the steps above, alternating colors of crepe paper, until all gift items have been wrapped. You could certainly leave the surprise balls as is once all the items have been tucked inside, but where’s the fun in that?
To add a little bit more pizazz to my surprise balls, I added a few strips of coordinating colors to each. Following the same process as in step one, I cut long strips of crepe paper into fourths. Then fringed the edges a bit by folding each strip in half and then snipping along the edge with scissors. Attach one color at a time with a little dab of hot glue to secure to the ball. Then wrap around the ball once and add another dab of hot glue. Repeat this step two more times, wrapping each color in an opposite direction so they do not overlap.
Next, create mini graduation DIY caps for each ball to really up the cute factor! Cut 6”x1.25” strips of black cardstock, and 3×3 squares. Roll the long strip of cardstock and hot glue the ends together by slightly overlapping them. This will form the band of the cap.
Attach the square top of the caps with a little bit of hot glue along the edges of the band part. Then carefully poke a hole in the center of the hat using a small gold brad. Before folding the edges of the brad open, add a tassel to each cap. I made my tassels using embroidery floss following the directions in this post here. To attach the caps to the surprise balls, simply add a thin bead of hot glue around the band, and carefully, yet firmly, press down onto the ball.
And there you have it, a simple and unique way to surprise the graduates in your life!
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Annaliese is a party stylist and owner of Made of Sugar and Spice, a dress-up party boutique for little girls ages 3 – 10. Her love of color, pretty girly things, glitter, and creative nature help transform every day occasions into the best day ever. She lives by the motto “I can spray paint that,” has a major sweet tooth, and when she’s not crafting or planning parties, you can find her spending time with her husband, son and three dogs.