Gifts for grads by price
Under $50: Leather passport covers
Whether heading straight into their chosen profession or taking a little time off to play, grads deserve something special to mark their milestone. We've got the goods, and at price points from budget to beyond. — Shannon McCarthy
Bing: Leather passport covers
Give grads a gift that lets them know they're going places. And while genuine leather is a pretty luxe wrapper for that all-important passport, it isn't overly pricey, and it makes a much more impressive gift than something faux or fabric.
Under $50: Clocky alarm clock
Bing: Clocky alarm clock
Young folk have a long and storied tradition of traveling after graduation, but at a certain point the career track (or postgraduate degree) beckons and early morns become routine. Clocky is a diabolical little device that defies even a snooze-button addict: This wheeled alarm clock rolls away until you get up to turn it off.
Under $50: Graduation tassel frames
Bing: Graduation tassel frames
Don't let your grad toss that tassel into a random shoebox or desk drawer; instead, display it alongside the official commencement photo in a frame built for pride. Choose from simple setups or more elaborate double frames with space for a diploma, or frames offering personalized engraving options.
Under $50: The Book of Everything
Bing: The Book of Everything
If wandering the world is on a graduate's mind (or even if they just want to dream), there's no better compendium of global knowledge than the grandly named "Book of Everything" by travel guide masters Lonely Planet. From practical etiquette advice to wilderness survival tips, it'll teach 'em what they didn't learn in school.
Under $50: How to Cook Everything
Lonely Planet has globe-trekking trivia covered, but Mark Bittman is the go-to guy for all things kitchen culture. The latest edition of his must-have cooking "bible" is more than a thousand pages of practical advice and delicious recipes basic enough for beginners but wide-ranging enough to interest fierce foodies as well.
Under $100: Urbanears Plattan Plus headphones
Grads won't mistake these babies for their father's headphones. Drenched in monochromatic color, the Plattan Plus over-ear models from Urbanears definitely make a statement, and not just sonically. Adding to the cool quotient is the "ZoundPlug," an extra input that allows a friend to plug in their 'phones and share the music.
Under $100: Architectural alphabet framed name
A grad by any other name is still as sweet, but there's something undeniably special about a gift that celebrates his or her own moniker. A sophisticated yet trendy (i.e. they'll actually hang it up) name check is composed of artistically shot architectural shapes that mimic letters.
Under $100: Logitech Wireless Solar Keyboard K760
Meld eco-conscious features with up-to-the-nanosecond tech specs and what do you get? A perfect gift for any grad in need of a full external keyboard to pair with a smartphone or tablet computer. Logitech's Bluetooth-enabled device is powered via sunlight (or even lamplight), so when they say "wireless," they mean it.
Under $100: Vermont Teddy Bear occupation bears
Not all gifts for grads are hi-tech wonders: Sometimes it's the snuggle that counts. And while gifting a generic stuffed animal might be a bit on the grammar-school side, even college graduates will appreciate the symbolic sweetness of a teddy bear dressed in the garb of their new careers.
Under $100: Cuisinart GR-4N Griddler
Bing: Cuisinart GR-4N Griddler
How's this for a kitchen caboodle: a five-in-one cooking appliance that's a contact grill, Panini press, full grill, full griddle and half-grill/half-griddle. Add the name Cuisinart and it's not surprising this stainless steel workhorse gets high marks from consumers and critics alike. Grads will happily multitask on this marvel.