Gifts for the Graduating Hobbyist

Posted by Emily Ogle on

After graduating high school or college, your younger friends and family members may be lost as to what’s next for them in life. You can offer them help, guidance, and support, and gifts—lots and lots of gifts.

New graduates may find themselves with a fair bit of time on their hands, and they may be looking for things to do now that they’re going off to college or starting their adult lives. Hobbies are not only great ways to pass the time but also help you find like-minded people who could become lifelong friends.

We’ve put together a list of gifts for graduates of high school or college, based around hobbies. Some of these items can be found here on Original Hobby, while others are more general hobby supplies.

1. Board Games

Splendor, Space Cowboys - Original Hobby

Once a graduate is out of high school or college, it’s hard for them to meet new people and make new friends. School keeps you around people constantly—friends, classmates, teachers, roommates—and moving away from this environment can be difficult. Board games help you connect with people and keep you socializing. Your grad can join a local board gaming group, giving them an instant group of friends. Those who game together, stay together. On Original Hobby, you can find a couple of great board game offerings: the two-player puzzle game Patchwork and the chip collection card game Splendor for two to four players.

2. Crokinole Board


Tournament Size Crokinole Board, Original Hobby

If your college grad liked going to bars near campus and playing pool or other bar games with their friends, then a crokinole board might be the perfect gift. After graduation, they might not have as much time to go out to bars anymore, and they don’t want to invest the money or the physical space into purchasing a pool or shuffleboard table. Crokinole is a 19th century dexterity board game and table sport from Canada (click here for some additional history) that involves a lot of the same skills and hand-eye coordination that pool does but on a much smaller scale. There are many reasons why a pool player would love crokinole, so your bar-frequenting grad would get a kick out of it.

3. 3D Wooden Puzzles

Wood Craft 3D Puzzle Solar-Powered Windmill, Original Hobby

If your grad likes spending time working on jigsaw puzzles or Legos, they’ll probably enjoy the 3D wooden puzzles offered by Original Hobby. Unlike Lego bricks, these wooden puzzles come with six colors of paints and can be painted and decorated however you like. Original Hobby also offers four solar-powered puzzles—a windmill, a helicarrier, a watermill, and a monster truck—that add another dimension to the engineering and problem-solving. If your grad is interested in STEM, they’ll get even more out of these puzzles. Once assembled, the puzzles can be taken apart for future play or can serve as decoration in your grad’s new dorm or apartment.

4. Travel Guitar

Steel-String Travel Guitar with Bag and Strap, Original Hobby

Musical instruments are excellent gifts for anyone looking to take on a new hobby. Not only is playing an instrument an opportunity for creativity, but it also keeps one’s mind active and learning. While any instrument would be a great gift, guitars are always a popular choice, and you can find a decent instructor for your grad as part of the musical gift package. Original Hobby’s steel-string travel guitar is a lightweight alternative to larger guitar styles but doesn’t sacrifice the distinctive steel-string guitar sound. The travel guitar, as its name might suggest, is perfect for any kind of travel, especially the road trips that your grad may take during their gap year. The guitar also comes in five different colors to fit your grad’s style.

5. Camera


After graduation, your grad will probably want to document their life adventures and may decide to settle with their phone camera just because of convenience. However, you can give the gift of a “real” camera with which to take pictures, a camera that’s going to come with more exciting functions and that’s going to better capture their experiences. With a quality camera, your grad can start up a hobby in photography or videography to improve their Instagram stories or just for their own personal use. If your grad loves physical activities like biking, hiking, or skiing, a GoPro action camera could be a good choice, too.

6. Books and Journals

Books and Journals

Reading is good for the brain: it keeps the mind active and exposes us to different experiences and viewpoints. You may be tempted to gift your grad with a self-help book that’s meant to teach them how to live on their own, without school or without parents to guide them, but they probably won’t read it. Instead, think about giving them a special or limited edition copy of one of their favorite books—that can be a more effective self-help gift than an instructional book. Or if your grad has an inclination for the creative, you can give them a journal: lined for the writer or unlined for the artist.

7. Cooking Gear

Pots and Pans, Kitchen

If your grad has lived at home for most of their life, they may not have ever needed to cook for themselves. In this case, useful graduation gifts can be pots, pans, or other cooking materials to fill out their new kitchen so that they are fully prepared to cook their own meals, even if they might not know how. Some specific items, like the Instant Pot, can be incredibly helpful on their own for the aspiring chef, providing both the means and the instructions for how to cook.

Graduation can be an exciting yet stressful time for everyone. By giving a graduate something that’s fun or useful (or both), you have the potential to lessen their stress a little bit. Do you have any other ideas for hobby-based graduation gifts? Let us know!

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