How to Make Your Own Money Lei

Graduation Lei.jpg

Graduation season is here.  I’ve been getting lots of emails lately for ideas on graduation gifts and parties.  I’ve done my share of both.  I don’t have anyone graduating from anything at my house this year but I thought I’d revisit some of the graduation themed ideas I have shared in the past.

The first part of the week we will talk graduation gift ideas and then the second half of the week it will be graduation party ideas.

I know a popular graduation gift to give is cash.  Everyone loves cash.  Everyone can use a little cash so that is always a good choice. It’s fun to be able to present that cash in a creative way.  When we attended my son’s college graduation a few years ago I loved the idea of this money lei as a graduation gift.  The graduate kindly posed for a few pictures for me with his money lei.

What graduate wouldn't love a money lei!?

What graduate wouldn’t love a money lei!?

He was actually wearing three leis! A traditional flower lei but then he also had a candy lei and a money lei.

The candy lei was made out of plastic wrap and candy bars and tied in between each candy bar with curling ribbon – so cute.

But the lei I liked the most was the money lei – what graduate wouldn’t love a money lei!!


Dollar bills were gathered up with a piece of ribbon and tied in the middle and then attached to another piece of ribbon.  Curling ribbon works great.


There were also little bags of Hershey Hugs and Kisses tied in between the dollar bills. So fun!!

What a fun way to give a graduate a gift of cash.  Who wouldn’t love a cash lei!?

What graduate wouldn't love a money lei!  Make one easily with this tutorial

Leigh Anne
Hi – I’m Leigh Anne! I have been a homebased mom for 30 years since my first baby boy was born! I love working with women and helping to inspire them to achieve their goals and dreams while still maintaining motherhood and family as their number one priority. I blog about everything I enjoy – creating treats and meals in my kitchen, spending time in my garden, entertaining and party planning, reading, self improvement and tips and ideas on style and fashion.
Leigh Anne
Leigh Anne

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  1. Kris Wolverton says

    My traditional graduation gift for high school graduates is a tool kit. It doesn’t take long when moving the freshman into the dorm to hear the question, “I need a screwdriver for….”

  2. Bridee says

    I love the lei idea! How much is “typical” to give to a college graduate these days? Be honest… I have no clue. It is for my husband’s 2nd cousin. Thanks!!

    • says

      That’s a hard one. It was a wide range for my boys anywhere from 20 -100 I thought 100 was extremely generous. I am sure they would be grateful for any amount!

      • RobinLynn says

        For our very close friends who were relying on FAFSA for their college, we gave $50.00. Otherwise, my daughter either received $20-25 for her High School graduation

  3. Donna says

    What a fantastic and original idea! I would love to see a step by step tutorial on how to make a money lei, any suggestions as to where to look?

  4. Crystal says

    Gifts to bring to a graduation party: A personalized laundry bag with detergent, fabric softener, and change for the laundrymat, a bucket with car cleaner, a sponge, and car wax, a dry-erase board for the dorm with markers and cool thumbtacks, magnetic picture frames.

  5. Dawn says

    Find out restaurants near the college and get some gift-cards. They will be appreciated when dorm food gets old, or they just need a change of scenery. For local grads (or those traveling in a car) I also bought a couple of bath towels in their new school colors (easy to google) and a bottle of detergent and a roll of quarters for the laundry. Even if they don’t end up having coin operated washers, the quarters will be appreciated.

  6. Susan says

    Great idea! Does anyone know how much time it would take to make the lei that is pictured? Also, about how many dollar bills are part of this lei? I’d like to do something special for my nephew who is graduating next month.

    • says

      It goes together pretty quick – should take less than an hour. I don’t know how many bills were used in this one but I would just decide on an amount you want to give and work with that number of bills.

  7. Heidi says

    This is such a neat idea!! Thanks so much for sharing! This is being featured today at {Junk in their Trunk}!!

  8. Sherry says

    Gaudy!! No way. This is called a “Full Lei”. Full, fun, fabulous and unique. I just love it. I’m going to make one for a friends son this week,,,,,and YES, it will be FULL :-) .


  1. […] A little gaudy for sure, but a college grad doesn’t care how gaudy it is, money is money, and money is GOLD. Certainly cute for your grad to wear after the ceremony, this money lei is creative and the moment your grad spots this, their face will light up and you’ll be the best family member/friend that ever lived. Find out how to make one over at Your Home Based Mom. […]

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