Make a Graduation Gift Money Cake Holder with this free SVG file template for all the recent grads in your life! All you need is cardstock, adhesive, and your Cricut machine.
Graduation season is right around the corner, and chances are you’ve got a few celebrations on the calendar. Instead of stocking up on gift cards and generic cards that will get lost in the shuffle, why not make this Paper Graduation Money Cake for a unique and adorable gift for the grads in your life! This thoughtful gift is sure to impress any recent grad!
Table of Contents
What is a Money Cake Holder?
A money cake holder is a fun way to give a monetary gift with a crafty handmade spin. If giving a storebought card filled with cash isn't your jam, you'll love this project! This 3D tiered card stock holder allows you to gift money in a way unique way that's more fun than a plain old card!
Why Give a Money Cake Holder?
- Personalization: By making a Graduation Gift Money Cake Holder, you can personalize the gift for the graduate and make it more meaningful. You can customize the colors, design, and message on the cake holder to match the graduate's personality and interests.
- Creativity: Making a Graduation Gift Money Cake Holder can be a fun and creative project. This gives you an opportunity to experiment with different materials, designs, and techniques to create a unique and memorable gift.
- Practicality: Money is always a popular gift for graduates, and a Money Cake can make it more practical and easier to give while still being thoughtful. The cake holder provides a creative and secure way to present the money gift.
How Much Paper Do I Need?
You will need three different colors of standard-weight cardstock. I used black, white, and glitter gold cardstock. Standard cardstock is ideal for this project with a weight between 65-80lbs. Each tier is reinforced with 4 layers of cardstock to make this gift nice and sturdy. You can also opt to use a thicker material like Cricut's Kraftboard, but you'll only need one layer.
You may choose to personalize this a bit by using the school colors of your grad or the recipient's favorite colors. I chose to use a classic graduation color palette for this custom gift.
How Much Money Do I Need to Fill the Cake?
In this money cake, there are 20 slots to fill with dollar bills. Of course, you decide the dollar amount for each bill! But the minimum would be $20 if you choose to use one-dollar bills. I like to stop by the bank and request brand new bills for this project so it really looks its best and the bills are easier to roll.
To make this project more budget-friendly, you could also opt to fill the holes with colorful pieces of paper filled with thoughtful notes, words of advice, or compliments.
Can I Use This Project for Years Other Than 2023?
Yes! I've included an SVG option without the year, so you can make these Graduation Money Trees for any year other than 2023 that's pictured in the tutorial.
- Cricut Machine
- Standard Grip Cutting mat
- Cricut Fine-Tip Blade
- Cricut Scoring Wheel
- Standard, 60-80 lb cardstock
- Gold Glitter Cardstock, optional
- Paper adhesive
- Foam risers, optional
- Dollar Bills
Download the Free Graduation Money Holder Gift Cash Cake Files Here
Upload SVG Files
To begin, click on the link above to download the Money Cake SVG files to your computer.
Then, open up Cricut Design Space and create New Project.
Click on Upload to the left of your canvas and select the files you’re wanting to create from your computer.
Select the file(s) and upload it to your canvas.
Once uploaded, select the design, and click Ungroup in the layers panel to the right of your canvas.
Then, we need to change a line on each of the two “Outside Base” pieces from basic cut lines to score lines.
To do this, select the layers that only have lines (if the line's fill color is red in the Operation panel- it's a score line)
Once those layers have been selected, change the operation from "Basic" Cut to "Score" in the Operation panel.
Then, attach the score lines to their corresponding “Outside Base” piece by selecting the object and the score line layer. Click Attach in the layers panel or right-click and select Attach.
Step One: Cut Out Graduation Money Cake Pieces
Cut out all the pieces on their respective colors of paper. As I stated earlier, I used black cardstock for all of the pieces of the “cake” and a combination of black, white, and gold cardstock for the sign portion.
*PRO TIP: Change the Base Material for the “CONGRATS” white portion to Cardstock (for intricate cuts) on your Cricut Machine when you go to cut out your pieces. This will ensure your words are cut out crisply.
For the two pieces with the score lines, you'll be prompted by Cricut to install your Score Wheel first, and then you'll switch to your Fine-Point Blade for the remainder of the cuts.
Step Two: Glue Pieces Together
To begin, glue the four smaller, 8-hole, scalloped pieces together to create one thick piece. I find a paper glue works best for this step.
If your paper has an obvious right side make sure that it's oriented face up on the top of the stack and face down on the bottom of the stacked layers.
Next, glue the four larger, 12-hole, scalloped pieces together just like you did the upper-level pieces.
Now, glue the two slotted, scalloped pieces together and the two solid scalloped pieces together.
Now take the four pillar-shaped pieces. You should have two shorter ones and two taller ones with the score lines.
Fold the scored flaps of the two taller pillars outward.
Glue the two shorter pieces together.
Now sandwich the shorter piece between the two taller ones. Line up the bottom of the shorter pillar with the score lines of the taller pillars and glue. Keep the flaps folded outward.
If your paper has an obvious right and wrong side, be sure to glue the wrong sides together.
Slide the scalloped base piece with the slot onto the pillar piece so that it's sitting on top of the folded tabs.
Glue the tabs of the pillar piece to the bottom of the scalloped piece.
Now glue the remaining solid scalloped piece over the tabs, so they are enclosed.
To create the "Congrats" sign, you should have two identical solid pieces, one "Congrats" piece and one layer that will go in between.
Glue the "Congrats" to the shadow layer. You can choose to use the design with the year 2023, or without. You'll only need one for one money tree.
Now glue, or use adhesive foam pieces, to adhere the "Congrats" portion to one of the solid pieces.
You can include a handwritten note on the back of this sign if you'd like!
Step Three: Assemble the Money Cake
Slide the 12-hole scalloped piece onto the pillar piece.
Slide the 8-hole scalloped piece on next.
Glue the congrats piece to the top of the pillar.
Use the second solid piece to glue to the back of the "Congrats" sign, to sandwich the pillar in between.
Step Four: Fill the Graduation Gift Money Cake Holder
Gather 20 bills to fill up your money cake.
Roll them up tightly to fill up both tiers of the money cake.
Insert each rolled bill into its own slot. The lower tier holds 12 bills, and the upper tier holds 8 bills.
Happy Graduation Season!
Don't forget about this free template. Click here to pin this post to Pinterest!
Looking for even more unique money gift ideas? I've got you covered! Check out the posts listed below.
Join my crafting Facebook group where you can show us what you’re making, ask questions, and learn from others!
Looking for more SVG files and paper crafts? Click here!
Hal Jenner says
This will come in handy this year. I have 4 grandkids graduating
Hal Jenner says
This will come in handy this year. I have 4 grandkids graduating.
Erica Meares says
This is the perfect graduation gift for ANYONE!!!
I have so many graduations to go to, I wish I had a cricut to make these. They are so cute.
Laurie Black says
Fabulous project, such a unique gift!
Courtney K says
LISA L HIRST says
Homemade gifts are so much more thoughtful. Who wouldn't love this?
Angie Pierce says
I don't have a Cricut... This is a cute idea.
Very nice gift idea!
Great gift anytime! Change it up for any event!
That's a great idea--it would be really easy to change the colors and topper for a birthday present or wedding shower!
The absolute perfect gift for any graduate.
Linda S. says
This is a truly unique and creative idea!
Jeane Campbell says
You give the best instructions. Love this project.
Terry K says
Love, love your tutorials!
Catherine B says
What a unique idea!
Sheila H says
Great solution to, "What do I give the grad?"!
Carolee Cucinella says
Tom Bellamy says
ALISA YEE says
So clever, never saw this done before.
how cool....this site is amazing
Sheila H says
Perfect for this busy graduation season!
So cute and graduation season is sure here already
Athena Graeme says
Not a grad on earth that wouldn't love seeing this at their party!
Nolan Smith says
Very unique and creative.
Can't wait to give this!
Great Grad Gift
Janet K says
Clever gift idea!
Dave S. says
What a great idea. Very creative.
That's a lot of steps - I'd look on etsy to buy one (ROFL)
Dianna D. says
What a fun way to give money!
Debra J says
Love making homemade gifts!
Love it! Such a unique gift.
Thérèse De Bellefeuille says
Thanks you for the contest
Sherri Therrien says
Gonna make this for my nephew who is graduating Sunday.
This is such a unique and creative gift idea for graduates. Thank you so much!
Terrie Tooms says
I'm saving this idea for my grandson.
What a great way to gift money!
Cassidy Kirk says
This is a fun way to congratulate a graduate! I love the idea!!!
Vickie Gallo says
Cash is King !
Cheryl bendokas says
I did something similar with a scroll saw once, this would be much easier
Such a cool idea! Who doesn’t love cake AND money??
Very nice idea for a graduation party. I like the step by step directions.
Billi W. says
I have a few years before I start having more graduations however this would work for wedding/baby showers and I have a few of those coming up.
Thanks for a cute project and the inspiration.
Great ideas!! The instructions are so easy to follow. 9
Awesome ! ! ! ThankYou ! ! !
What every graduate needs!
Janice Cournoyer says
Great instructions. Can't wait to get started on this with the grand daughter.
Super cute idea!
Tammy Merritt says
Jan Hudson says
So very cute!!!!!!
Mary Ruggirello says
I’ve been wanting to try more paper crafts on my cricut and this looks like a fun one!
This is a cool idea!
Tabitha Olson says
I am not near as craft savvy as you. Thank you for sharing!
I made a money cake for my son when he graduated 2 years ago...this would have been much easier... Love the idea!
Amanda H. says
Creative ideas on this blog!
Rosemarie Moyster says
Such a great idea ! Love
Great idea! What graduate does'nt like getting money?
Dianna B says
Seems easy enough, Thanks
Tammie Skidmore says
this looks very easy to make and makes a great gift for any graduate. I also love that you can use any color to match school colors
Awesome will defentely make this xxxThank-you
This is a great idea, especially when you don't know what to get someone for graduation
Great idea! Card and gift in one!
Jack Keller says
Great idea! Just in time for graduation!
This is a great idea!!! I will save for my nephew graduating next year!
Liz O says
What a fun project! I am sure any graduate will love it! Thanks for sharing Kim!
Frank Stuart says
What an ingenious way to celebrate an important milestone in a teenager or college grad's life.
Cathy L Brown says
Such a thoughtful gift for a graduate.
Rita Benderman says
Great idea for grad gift
April Rogers says
This is lovely I can’t wait to make it. My Grandson is graduating this year.
Thank you for sharing this
Paula Blanchard says
Super cute design. Would be so fun to include some $2 bills.
Leslie Ooten says
Thanks for the great tutorial!
I wish I knew a graduate so I can do this project but actually I think I’ll change it up and make for me grandsons 15th bday especially bcuz st this age all they want is cash
Linda Mihay says
This is SO CUTE!! I'll have to save it til someone graduates, for sure!
Kathy Fronk says
I wish I had seen this earlier. I had 3 graduation gifts to give. I already bought them their gifts before seeing this.
very cool!! who doesnt want a stack of money??!!
Amy K says
Such a unique & creative gift idea! Thanks!
Awesome idea for a graduate.
Fabulous idea for a new graduate!
Such a cute idea!
Laura Mercon says
Love this! So unique and creative.
Christine T. says
Great idea, can't wait to make it for a graduation party next weekend.
Fun grad gift
Janet Nancy says
Cute idea! I am saving this for future grads in the family! Thanks for the instructions.
Diane Rice says
Thank you for the file and tutorial.
I can't wait to make this for my neice
Rosemary Perry says
All of these are lovely ideas. I don't own a Cricut but I know someone who does. I will share all these ideas with them.
So cute!! My daughter is a senior ‘24 ☺️. Thank you for sharing!
Brook T. says
This is so cool.Thank you for the great ideas
Nancy D says
Theresa Jenkins says
Another great idea!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Kelly M. says
This is so much more thoughtful and creative than just giving a card with money in it!
Karen Petrychko says
This would make a great gift! Makes me wish I had a circuit!
Cute cute cute I have only two graduations this year
John Gusswein says
Requires way too much time for the busy parents.
Catherine Lee says
Susan P. says
A lot of work but a great idea!
Love the idea. You can fill mine with 20's lol
Kathy S. says
I love this unique idea!
Sheila Hutchinson says
I love your ideas! So many useful things that family and friends would appreciate.
Madison Sprinkle says
Such a cute idea!
liz minx says
That is so neat! I'd do this for a birthday
Cynthia C says
This is super cute and so much more memorable than a simple card!
What a great graduation gift
Sheila Hutchinson says
Thank you for a great idea. You could change it up a little for so many things!
Awesome gift idea
This is so cute!
Betty S says
what a cool way to give a monetary gift
What a cute gift idea....I may need to try and make a birthday version!
Linda S. says
Definitely a cute idea!
Laura Cuthbert says
Such a clever idea!
Kim Ferrugia says
Good grief I need to get a Cricut! Cute idea!!
What a neat idea!
Lee McKelvey says
Great idea!! You could also swap out the bills with handwritten messages from friends and family to commemorate the important date - especially from friends or relatives from afar that might not be able to attend the celebration!
Such a cute idea! I wish I had a cricut!! I love all the cool stuff you can make with it!
Love this so much! What a great idea!
Rebecca Bishop says
This is great, I love it, thank you!!
Jodi Hunter says
This is so cool.
Brian D says
Really GREAT idea!!
jeanne pellin says
The video gave me such a cute idea for cards.
patricia caradonna says
Perfect idea for my husband's 62nd birthday June 10th.
Melanie C says
Fun! About how long does this take to make from start to finish?
Kaitlyn Walas says
The Cricut Graduation Gift Money Cake Holder offers a creative and personalized way to present monetary gifts for graduates, adding a fun and memorable touch to their special day.
Paula Gillespie says
Love this idea