Why do we wear those funny hats at graduation? Have you ever wondered that? I do, every time I see them. Plus, those robes… what’s that all about?
Well, if you’re like me and you enjoy knowing why we do the things we do… then this is for you. I’ve done my research to help you out.
Here’s how things started…
Academic regalia came to fruition when universities started forming in the 12th and 13th centuries. Students and teachers typically wore clerical clothing because the church was highly influential at this time. Many professors were priests, monks or clerics and their students were usually studying to do something similar. Historians believe scholars wore long robes and hoods to keep warm in these unheated buildings.https://www.graduationsource.com
Alright, so that makes sense, it started with church reasons. However, it seems that it gets even more complicated than that as the times changed and we stepped into different centuries.
For instance, during the medieval times it is said that in 1321 Oxford and Cambridge Oxford forbade “excessive apparel” in universities requiring everyone to wear long gowns during ceremonies to create unity (graduation source.com).
And then, we get into why the hats have squares on top? I mean, that’s what’s really weird, right?!
Well, it turns out that these caps are believed to have been developed in the 15th century evolving from hats known as birettas used by Catholic clerics, scholars, and professors, yep, religion again.. The origin of the biretta dates back as far as 1311 in churches (that’s a long-ass time!) (graduationsource.com).
Now, this still doesn’t answer why we put a piece of card board on our heads. So I had to dig deeper. And it seems, this is quite debatable. Which doesn’t make me happy because I like answers. Many historians seem to believe that it signifies a book, giving the scholarly tone to it. However, the name of it is a mortar board which is the same as mortar board used by brick layers. Therefore, some historians believe it represents the master workmen
Finally, here’s where things really get solidified. While the cap and gown have been used for years and years, it was after the Civil war that they became used strictly for graduation and therefore became recognized as a symbol of achievement (graduationsource.com).
Regardless of why we wear the funny clothes, graduation is a special time and I love seeing all the fun graduation caps each and every year that people create. I didn’t do this when I graduated because I basically didn’t have time, and I regret it. I think it’s too cute.
Graduation Caps You Can Customize Online
Recently, I’ve become aware of Zazzle’s customizable graduation cap toppers. These are so great because you can put absolutely anything on them, they print it, and you attach it to your hat. I wish they had these when I graduated 10 years ago.
Today I’m sharing these great graduation cap toppers for everyone. I’ve got motivational, sports-related, job-specific, and more. You’re bound to find something that fits your needs. The best thing is, you can add your own touch right online.
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First up, and my personal favorite, is the funny caps. Graduation is a celebration so there’s no reason why you can’t celebrate with a little humor.
I love this next design because while it is about gay pride, it’s not overly political, it’s just sharing your pride.
You did just spend 4 (or more) years studying a specific subject, right? Then show it off with your cap. This is a great way to memorialize your goals so you can look back in 10 years and see where you went. No pressure, you might change your mind, but it’s still fun to remember where you started. Even if you don’t become what you think you will, it was still a part of your journey.
You can’t really have graduation without a little motivation. Spread that motivation with a fun cap design.
Another one of the graduation caps that can show pride but not be too political is this patriotic design. Show your pride with an American flag.
I personally love photos which is why I had to include the following cap design. Take photos from your time in college and your friends you’ll never forget and make them a part of your graduation.
If religion is your thing then it probably helped you get through those long study nights and those tough times. You can pay respect to that support with your cap.
There’s nothing like those big life moments to remind you of those you’ve lost. It’s hard and it sucks. It can be super comforting to remember them in a special way during your graduation.
Sports are a great part of the college experience in the USA. If you’re really into the sports part of college then represent that with these caps.
There are so many people who helped me get through college so these thankful caps are so perfect. Thank your parents, grandparents, supportive friend, spouse, whoever. Be sure to show appreciation with a cap or some other way.
Another personal favorite of mine is the travel theme cap. After I graduated from undergraduate college, I traveled to Australia then found myself back there for my masters so travel is in my blood. There are so many adventures out there and I love how these caps show embrace those opportunities.
Finally, this last design is for all those divas just waiting to swap their cap for a crown. Show off your royalty with these graduation caps.
Did you decorate your hat for graduation? I’d love to know if that was a tradition when you graduated, let me know in the comments!
Hi, I’m Jamie, and I have two great loves: creating and traveling. I’m a blogger, designer, photographer who would love to help you enjoy life’s special moments or, what I like to call life’s “journeys”. From parties to vacations, I’m here to make them beautiful and easy. I provide the tools you need to plan, celebrate, and remember, without all the hassle. Contact me for custom orders and collaborations. When I’m not creating or traveling, you’ll find me at a yoga studio or with my nose in a book and cat on my lap. Read more about me!