Best College Grad Gift Ideas

May 20, 2015 5 min read

The Class of 2015 has just reached a major milestone in life.  For years, they have worked hard to reach the moment when they can stand before friends and family, turn their tassels, and toss their caps in unison.  How do you choose a graduation gift for a loved one that will celebrate their accomplishment and serve their future needs?  Jack Georges gets frequent calls for guidance during this time of year.  After all, where better to search for a gift that says “welcome to your future” than the leather expert whose superior quality bags and accessories are made especially for professionals?   While our first question is usually, “what career have they chosen?” just as often, we find great value in asking “how will they get to work and get around once there?“  The answer is always key to choosing the right gift.  Since answers vary greatly, we have listed those that come up most often and selected Jack Georges pieces to match.

Power Commuting.  For the graduate planning for a dream job in a busy metro area, having a quality bag that can take the intensity of a rigorous walking commute while still emanating professionalism is critical. 

 Milano Madison Avenue Business Tote

For her, the Milano Madison Avenue Business Toteis the perfect way to get around in flawless style.  Made from scratch and stain resistant Italian leather that will help in inclement weather, this spacious bag is built to handle the hustle and bustle of a busy lifestyle.  Its adjustable straps make it easy to carry snugly on her shoulder during daily travel.  It has plenty of room for her laptop, tablet, files, and her personal items.  This bag will be her favorite go-to accessory with plenty of function for work while still looking sleek and refined for after-work social events.   Plus, it’s available in traditional black, cherry, or in vivid shades of green, orange, and red to really help her make a smart, yet personal statement.

For him, the Elements Flapover Briefcase (Double Gusset) will do the job right.  This classy briefcase is perfect for the professional with an impeccable sense of style that may need to carry different loads each day.  The bag has a laptop compartment when he needs it and space for his essentials when he doesn’t.  Either way, the bag maintains its crisp, clean shape regardless of what is inside.   It’s made from durable and scratch-resistant European leather that is easy to keep clean and won’t be affected by the occasional rain drops or snowflakes.  The bag’s contemporary design and construction are backed by expert craftsmanship.  It is available in classic black or more adventurous but enduring color options like burgundy and cognac.  Why not be trendy and functional at the same time?

Long Term Commitment.  Some of this year’s graduates are driven to the top, either through the courage of their entrepreneurial spirit or the reward of hard work that began long before they donned their caps and gowns.  These professionals deserve a work bag that will accompany them on a journey for decades to come, and like them it will stand the test of time and be the better for it. 

For him, a premier choice that he will surely love is our University Oversized Flap Over with Buckle Straps (Triple Gusset). This was one of Jack Georges’ first styles and its popularity has been consistent since the beginning.  The bag is hand made from full-grain American Steer Hide that makes it just as strong, resilient, and enduring as his career promises to be.  One of the largest briefcases in our line, it will accommodate everything he needs to make his work day successful.   Available in commanding black or dark brown hues lined in leather, the bag will still exude sophistication even when it is time to retire. 

For her, she will appreciate the understated elegance that never goes out of style from our Belmont Dowel Tote. The bag is made from strong, vegetable re-tanned American bullhide that will build a luxurious patina with use.  It features a wide gusset allowing for plenty of room to throw in whatever she needs to carry and top zip closure to make sure that everything inside remains secure.  The tote is lined in suede and accented with solid brass hardware.  Best of all, the nature of the leather ensures that the bag will get more attractive as time goes on and her career begins to really take off.

For the attorney, doctor, or executive joining the ranks, our Belting Classic Briefbag (Triple Gusset) is the industry benchmark for framed cases.  Top level professionals have preferred natural belting leather for their bags for over a century because of the strength of the leather and the story that every scratch, stain, and mark tells about their experiences in their careers.  Made in black, brown, and traditional tan, trimmed with solid brass hardware, its classic silhouette is also set apart with a secure, and rare, combination lock – adding security that is an absolute must for many professions. The #9005 is the perfect companion for a scholar turned professional with big dreams and a bright future ahead.

Frequent Fliers and Studying Abroad. Some of this year’s grads will trade in their syllabi for travel itineraries.  Whether they will travel frequently for work, study abroad, or take a break to tour the world and set up a blog to share their experiences, you can help send them off in style with any of our travel-perfect bags from the Voyager Collection that features functional, vintage-styled bags. 

At Jack Georges, we know that beyond looking good—our bags must help their owners get the job done right.  That’s why we make the Voyager Business WheelerThis wheeler was designed with narrow airplane aisles in mind and works just as well in trains and buses.  At 14” wide, it’s just the right size to comfortably wheel through the aisle without bumping into seats or disturbing fellow passengers.  The bag is made from full-grain vegetable re-tanned buffalo leather that has plenty of character and will easily diminish scratches sustained in travel by simply rubbing the scratched area and allowing the oils in the leather to heal the marks.  Available in solid black or brown that highlights the hand staining of the leather, each bag has plenty of personality.  While the #7844 is designed more for professional travel needs, the Voyager Cabin Bag is a great option for use as a carry-on that is just as suited for work and doubles as an everyday bag.  With soft construction, an adjustable, removable shoulder strap, and pockets to keep organized, there are plenty of reasons to carry the bag daily and enjoy the fact that it will age gracefully and develop a rich patina that is unique to that one bag.

The Bare Essentials. Some careers require only a minimum amount of items to be carried.  For professionals in those fields, an elegant, well-made, and characterful cross body is all that is needed.  The Jack Georges Voyager Collectionhas the perfect solution in two popular sizes.  For those that need to carry a tablet, a cell phone, and a few small, personal essentials, consider the Slim Crossbody.  For those that may also need to carry the occasional notebook or files but don’t want a large messenger bag, the Crossbody Bag is the answer.  It shares many characteristics with its smaller sibling but adds a zippered gusset pocket for quick access to a cell phone without having to open the bag.  Either way, these bags have adjustable shoulder straps that allow for a great fit regardless of how they’re worn and keep hands free while walking or traveling.  

Graduating from school is a life changing achievement.  As the members of the Class of 2015 prepare to enter the next phase of their lives, they deserve a quality, sophisticated gift that will be their companion on their professional journeys.  Regardless of what that next step may be, Jack Georges has the ideal gift to show your support for that special graduate.  Best of all, with a lifetime warranty, you know you’ll be choosing wisely.

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