How to Wear a Graduation Sash

By Whitney Elaine
Mario Tama/Getty Images News/Getty Images

Graduation sashes are a decorative part of your college graduation cap and gown ensemble. They are long pieces of fabric that represent aspects of your college life, like membership in a Greek letter organization, some aspect of your heritage (like a Kente cloth sash) or a symbol of your academic achievement. Along with hoods and cords, sashes are often optional and used to add a bit more personality to the traditional commencement wear.

Step 1

Steam or Iron your sash. Depending on where you purchased your sash, it might arrive a little wrinkled. Smooth it out by ironing it face-down (never iron the stitching on the front) on low heat. Or use a steamer to gently straighten wrinkles.

Step 2

Place your sash around your neck, over your gown. The sash should be the second decorative piece that you put on, before adding a hood or cords.

Step 3

Align the sash so that each of the ends are even and flatten it across your chest. If you are having an outdoor commencement ceremony, consider lightly pinning the sash to your gown so that it doesn't move around in wind.

About the Author

Whitney Elaine is a freelance writer in the Washington, D.C. area. Besides contributing to Web sites like, AOL and, she's worked for magazines like "Essence," "Heart & Soul" and "Sister 2 Sister." She holds a Bachelor of Arts in print/online journalism from Howard University and has been writing for since 2004.