A Quinceañera is a girl’s 15th birthday party to celebrate becoming a woman. It is often called a a Quince Años. It is a Hispanic tradition and more commonly celebrated in Central America and Mexico. It is many girls’ dreams to have one, so enjoy it! For guidelines, hints, tips, and info on how to have a fun, festive, best, flamboyant, and fabulous Quinceañera of your own, please read on…
- Discuss the idea of a Quinceañera with your parent(s) or legal guardian. You will need their approval and possibly a budget for the party’s finances. You will want to start planning your Quinceañera (or quince for short) in 6 months to a year’s advance, with enough time to make sure that everything can be taken care of. Talk about the prices of the dress etc.
- Choose the party‘s date. You may want your Quinceañera to be near the time of your birthday; however, consider that you may not want to have your party during winter or spring break of school, or near any other holidays in which you feel your friends will most likely be unable to attend if they are out of town. If your birthday is on a weekday, then you could plan your quince the Saturday before or after your birthday. It is common to have your quince on a Saturday.
- Choose the place to have your quince is commonly a reception hall (similar to one used for weddings, anniversary parties, sweet sixteens, etc.) You will want to find out your price range for the reception hall, and how many people the hall can accommodate. Your parents’ should be able to help you out with this. However, before you have your actual party at the reception hall, it is traditional to have a ceremony at a church. This is traditional, but optional.
- Choose the time your Quinceañera starts and ends. This is difficult due to the fact that once the party starts, it’s so fun it seems to never end. Many Quinceañeras do not have a designated end time because how long the party goes on depends on a variety of many different things. These things are commonly how long the church ceremony may take, what time people will leave the party, what time the cake is cut, and others. Keep these things in mind as you decide on your party’s time and date!
- Consider the fourteen or less couples and escort of a Quinceañera. An escort would be the boy to do just that, escort the birthday girl throughout her night. In a Quinceañera there are traditionally the birthday girls’ closest fourteen girl friends and closest fourteen boy friends who will make couples to dance several dances for the Quinceañera, and often a surprise dance as well. If you lack all fourteen friends you may borrow cousins as well, have only seven couples, only have girl friends dancing, etc… This is your party and you should feel comfortable to make any changes necessary. If you plan on having the couples then you will need to ensure that everyone’s parents approve, they are not busy that weekend, will be able to attend most of the dance rehearsals, understand that they will be paying for the cost of their own dress, shoes, jewelry and others. Most importantly is that they are truly people who will not steal your spotlight on your special day. It is also customary to give every individual person who makes up the couples a small present to thank them for helping you in your Quinceañera. If you want, you may also have Damas which are girls of your choice to help with the escorting and/or surprise dancing.
- Choreography is also vital for your fourteen couples. It is traditional for there to be two-three dances dances with the fourteen couples. Start practicing at least two months before the Quinceañera. You may want to think about hiring someone from a local dance studio to come and help you learn the dance for maybe the first four-six weeks. After that you and the other fourteen couples will basically be on your own. There is also traditionally a father and daughter dance. If a father is not present then maybe you could share this dance with your godfather, grandfather, uncle or the most important male authority figure in your life. If there isn’t one then feel free to skip this dance.
- Consider the outfits for the fourteen couples and the birthday girl herself. You will want to have everyone’s measurements, heights, sizes and shoe sizes taken down. Depending on where you live, the dress for the birthday girl may need to be bought as early as six months in advance because it may take a while to make all of the needed adjustments and possibly ship the dress to it’s desired place.
- Send reply cards and thank you notes are also high on the list of things to do. Whether you are ordering or creating these, it is a good rule of thumb to order & create all of the stationary from the same place and at around the same time. Your invitations can be traditional or modern so long as you have the who, what, when, where, and why included. You could also possibly include a schedule of the night, the names of the fourteen couples as well as the names of the people who helped financially, such as godparents, along with a poem or prayer possibly dedicated to someone close who passed away. Invitations now often consist of pictures of the birthday girl (sometimes in her Quinceañera dress.) Invitations should essentially be ordered 3-4 months ahead of the actual party date. The quicker you have those cards in hand, the quicker the outer envelope can be addressed. You should send out invitations six-eight weeks before the Quinceañera (to those close by) and around ten weeks (for those guests not so close by.) Reply cards almost always include a box or place where each guest will indicate how many people will be coming. It is detrimental to have a date for the return of the reply card. If you want to be environmentally friendly and conserve a tree or feel that a reply card is too much to do then you could simply leave an “RSVP to (your phone number here)” at the end of the invitation. The thank you notes should normally be written by hand of the birthday girl. To add a fun twist, you may wish to send a picture card including a memorable picture from the Quinceañera. Thank you notes should be sent out within a month after the Quinceañera.
- Cover the decorations and music. If going with a theme Quinceneara such as masquerade or renaissance then decorations matching that theme would be appropriate. Even if your party is not themed specifically you will not want decorations to clash alongside the colors of the dresses and outfits. Decorations can be as simple as table center decorations to as fancy and extravagant as balloons, streamers, and the whole nine yards. Music should be chosen according to personal taste, if you are playing music with profanity or cursing, it is at your own risk. Just think of the potential young children and elderly people present and try to imagine their reactions when choosing music. If possible, you may want to hire a DJ to play music and announce the birthday girl’s entrance and other things.
- Next to decide on is the food and drinks. As you may not know exactly what should be served, your parents seem to be very handy right now. They should be possibly the most useful people as far as knowing what is commonly served, what is the most popular, what the right portions are etc… As far as alcoholic drinks and beverages go, your parents should have the say on whether or not they are served.
- The most important and best for last is… To have fun! This is your party and your day to shine! Whatever happens on the day of the Quinceañera is not enough to distract you from having the best fifteenth birthday party of your life!
Source Sited: Wikihow.com