College Student Gift Basket

Need some ideas for a college student gift basket? Stephanie on our Creative Team is here to help! -Linda

There’s something about extra pointy pencils and Post-it notes that makes the most chaotic person (ahem) feel like they can be an organizing maven. Plus, put them in a cute basket and you get an instant gift!  This one was designed with a college student in mind, but it could be applied to any age student or teacher.

Here’s what I used:

  • Dry erase calendar
  • Notebooks
  • Highlighters
  • Post-its
  • Crayons
  • Blank flash cards
  • Washi tape
  • Washcloths
  • Study snacks (fruit rolls and M&Ms)
  • Hair chalk and face paint markers in school colors


You can always adjust the cost of your basket by what and how much you put in it.  Remember, a smaller box, basket or other container can look just as cute, and fills up much faster.

To assemble the basket, start with the largest item.  In this case it was the calendar.  I also taped the gift receipt to the back of the calendar, just in case there’s something here that she already has or really won’t use.  Then start adding other items, again going from larger to smaller, and moving from the back.  I put 2 extra notebooks behind the calendar and just left one out in front to be seen. One washcloth was put in the front bottom of the basket and the washi tape and flashcards are propped up on it.   At this point you could wrap it up with clear cellophane, but I don’t think it’s necessary.

What would you put into a college student gift basket?

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Steph Paxman
Steph lives in the Pacific Northwest where she can usually be found cutting or gluing something. Besides making messes, she stays busy with her 3 kids, church, PTO and of course blogging.
Steph Paxman

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  1. 1

    Great idea for any student. Only thing I would add is a planner for high school and college students. I’d love this if I were going back to school. Pinned.

  2. 2

    Fabulous gift basket for a college student! I would add various tab designs for bookmarking or research for projects! I love and use various tabs for work too.

  3. 3

    DRIED FRUITS, sharpies, resturant gift card,

  4. 4

    I have been thinking about making baskets for my niece and nephew who are starting college this year. Since they will be in the dorm, with no private bath, I am using plastic totes with handles from Dollar Tree – the ones that look like beach totes. Back in the day, we called them bathroom buckets. I am not going to put the toiletries in though, because they are particular, lol! I am including flip flops, scissors, and some report folders, along with some of the same things in yours. Oh, and some command hooks..

    1. 4.1

      Oh yes, the command hooks will be perfect. And I know just what kind of basket you’re talking about–that will be great!

  5. 5

    i would add some packages of cup-o soup or some snack bars or nuts for quick energy

  6. 6
    Quilting Tangent

    Cans of chicken noodle soup and a box of hot chocolate mix.

  7. 7

    I did a “smart” basket: SmartFood (pre-popped popcorn), SmartWater (bottled water) and rolls of Smarties (candies).

  8. 8

    I did a “smart” basket: SmartFood (pre-popped popcorn), SmartWater (bottled water) and rolls of Smarties (candies).

  9. 9

    I graduated not too long ago and all of the stuff in this basket would be awesome to have in college ( and now for that matter!) Things like tape, sticky notes, and dry erase markers college students always want but never seem to buy for themselves!

    My only other addition would be an enormous pack of gum… always good to have while studying!

  10. 10

    This is such a wonderful idea! I stumbled across it on Pinterest and am SO glad I did! I’ve putting together one for my nephew. I decided to add some $5 gift cards to places like Dunkin Donuts, Starbucks, and Barnes and Noble for coffee breaks! I also found out which college he will be attending and purchased a t-shirt with the college name on it.
    Thanks SO much for the idea!