What is a Quinceañera?
What is a Quinceañera? The term quinceañera is a Spanish term, derived from "quince," or 15" and is a special, milestone celebration of a girl’s 15th birthday. This 15th birthday marks her passage from childhood to womanhood; the term is also used to refer to the celebrant herself, or "la quinceañera." The quinceañera is also called quinceaños, or quince años, or often, simply quince. It is also often written as XV.
Because the Aztec and Mayan cultures also had similar rite-of-passage customs and traditions, it is thought that the quinceañera may have originated during this time, with the Spanish cultural influence (including Roman Catholicism) combined with the indigenous tribes that the Spaniards colonized.
The quinceañera celebration is both a religious ceremonial event (usually Catholic) and a social event that emphasizes the importance of religion, family, community, and society in the life of a young woman. Quinceañeras are celebrated in Mexico, Latin America, the Caribbean, and in Latino communities in the United States and around the world. Though these celebrations are often for young women, parents can also have a quinceañero for a young man's 15th birthday. Additionally, sweet 15's and sweet 16's are celebrated throughout the United States, and are very similar to a quinceañera, except that they do not have the religious mass.
Quinceañera Ceremonies & Traditions
The typical quince celebration begins with a mass attended by the girl and her family and godparents. The mass is followed by a reception, or party, to which family and friends are invited. The reception features food, music, dancing, and other entertainment, with the birthday girl accompanied by her “court” of damas (“maids of honor”) and chambelánes (“chamberlains” or the maids of honors' escorts).
There are a few symbolic traditions at the quince that are still done, today. One tradition is the presentation of "the last doll," or "la ultima muñeca" that is given to the to quinceañera. If she has a younger sister, the quinceañera will give the doll to her, to show that she is giving up her childhood. If she does not have younger siblings, the celebrant will keep the doll as a last doll, to remind her of the transition.
The crown or tiara, "la corona" is also given to the celebrant, as well as jewelry, such as a necklace, bracelet, or earrings. The tiara/crown symbolizes that the celebrant is a "princess" before God and the world, and that she has transitioned from childhood and now has the ability to face the challenges ahead.
A bible and a rosary are also gifts that la quinceañera may also receive. The bible will be an important resource that the celebrant can use to always keep the word of God in her life. The rosary is also a religious symbol that helps remind the celebrant to keep her faith in God and in herself.
The final ceremony and gift that is presented before the dance or reception starts, is the shoes. The "changing of the shoes" ceremony is done to symbolize the transition from childhood to womanhood. These are supposed to be the first pair of high heels that the celebrant has ever worn.
The Quinceañera Reception
Traditionally, the dance portion of the quince begins with an introduction of the court of honor and la quinceañera, escorted by her chambelan. The celebrant may also choose to be introduced with her parents, instead of a chambelan. After the introductions, a choreographed waltz-type dance is done with the entire court. The court and la quinceañera usually work with a choreographer well before the date, to prepare; this is is considered one of the main events of the evening. The choreographer, planner, or parents usually work with their band or DJ, to determine the song and when the song is to be played. "Tiempo de Vals," by Chayanne, is one of the most popular quince waltz songs we play; however, more and more, we're seeing less traditional Waltz dances and more quinces choosing to create their own mix of songs or use a non-traditional song.
After the court waltz, the celebrant usually does a father/daughter dance, and sometimes a mother/daughter dance. In more traditional quinces, la quinceañera will dance with all of her uncles, after the father/daughter dance. Later in the evening, there is usually a "baile sopresa," or surprise dance. This dance is usually done to a mixture of music of any genre, but often it is done to more current, Pop or Latin music. The choreographer also works with the court to prepare them for this moment. The choreographer, planner, or parents usually work with their band or DJ, to have them create the special mix of songs for this surprise dance. Sometimes, the choreographer or planner will offer to create the mix, as well.
Later in the evening, toasts are often done by the parents of the celebrant, and often grandparents and uncles, too. Cake is also normally served, as well, during this time. The celebration is generally very elaborate and very similar to a wedding! Years ago, the quince signified that a young woman was ready for marriage; now, many parents will allow their daughter to begin dating, after their 15th birthday.
Today, some girls choose a trip abroad rather than a party, and others now choose a car, or may not celebrate their 15th birthday in the traditional manner. The tradition of the quinceañera continues to evolve, today. What are your thoughts? Feel free to comment on traditions or customs that you may have seen, that we forgot to mention.
- Austin's Best DJs & Photo Booths
The "Austin" and San Antonio Quinceanera Expo will be happening this year, in San Antonio. To our knowledge, there will not be a Quinceanera Expo in Austin, TX. The next expo will take place on Sunday, January 13, 2019, from 12pm - 5pm. The expo will be at the Freeman Coliseum, located at 3201 East Houston Street San Antonio, Texas 78219. You can get advanced tickets, online, for $8, here. The tickets will be $10 at the door, on the day of the event. Also, be sure to register for FREE prizes, for your Quince, at QuinceaneraExpos.com
Austin's Best DJs & Photo Booths will actually not be at this event, this year, but we know a lot of our clients and perspective clients are searching for Quinceanera info, so we wanted to share this info with you. You'll be able to talk to all the vendors you will need, in person, at the expo. If you're looking to hire a great Austin Quinceanera DJ, or a great Austin/central Texas photo booth rental, contact us!
At the Quince Expo, You can meet and chat with Austin and San Antonio:
Photographers, videographers, Quinceanera DJ's, bands, caterers, cake or bakery
decorators, mariachis, jumping balloons or inflatables, limo services, party buses, tuxedo shops, bridal stores, jewelry Stores, choreographers, makeup artist, bartending services, florist, anything and everything else you can think of that you'll need for your Austin or San Antonio Quinceanera! Additionally, if you're searching for a great place for Quinceanera dresses, be sure to check out Mary's Bridal, for unique, affordable Quinceanera dresses! Be sure to check out our interview with Austin Quinceanera Dress shop, Ceremonias 15 and Bridal.
We are always happy to help clients plan their Quince and/or Sweet 15, Sweet 16. Business owners, Jason & Diana, are certified wedding/event planners and gladly offer great tips and advice to help you plan the big day. If you need day of coordination and choreography, we often work with Elba, from Quince Mundo. Be sure to contact her for all your coordination and choreography needs. Elba does a great job and is truly passionate about what she does!
As always, contact us if you have any questions and we'll be happy to help! Be sure to check out our Top Quinceanera Trends article, or 8 Great Planning Tips for Your Quinceanera article!
- Austin's Best DJs & Photo Booths
Where do you find Quinceanera dresses in Austin/central Texas?
If you're planning a quinceanera in Austin or central Texas, then you definitely need a quince dress, formal wear, tuxedos, etc. If you're just starting to plan your quinceanera or even a wedding, be sure to stop by and visit Ceremonias 15 & Bridal, for all your formal wear needs. They also carry wedding dresses, too! We got the chance to talk to the store owner, Copitzy Vazquez, and we did a brief interview, discussing the store and other details. Here's the interview:
It's great to be here, today. Thanks for taking some time to sit and talk with us. So how you got your business started?
It was a lot of events that got me started in my business. The store I was managing decided to close it's doors, here in Austin, and at the same time this was happening, I was offered a chance to buy the boutique. I had previously thought about starting my own business, since I had been working in the business for over 10 years. It all worked out in my favor and we took over the business in April 2014.
How long have you been in business?
April 1st, it would be 4 years.
What items can people find at Ceremonias 15 and Bridal?
They can find the ideal dress for Quinces and even custom made dresses.
What do you like most about what you do?
Being able to help girls find the perfect dress for their occasion and seeing them smile at that moment!
Who should people contact if they have questions or would like to know more information about your business?
Sure, they can email firstname.lastname@example.org or call the store at: 512-832-6763 or even my cell, at: 512-573-6278
Lastly, what kind of great deals or promotions can you offer our blog readers and social media followers?
Sure, we can offer a free peticoat rental, with a purchase of a quince dress or ball bridal gown. We can also offer free grooms/chambelan tux with 6 regular rentals!
Thanks, again, for taking some time to do a brief interview with us, we really appreciate it!
If you're planning a Quinceanera, Sweet 15 or Sweet 16 in the Austin/central Texas area, or anywhere, then you have probably noticed that there is far less information available for Quince planning, than say, wedding planning. Fortunately, we're here to help!
As the leader in our Austin and central Texas Quinceanera, Sweet 15/16 and school events (dances, fundraisers and proms), we get to be a part of numerous Quinces and sweets! We also help many families plan their events. We already have several events booked for 2018 and we've seen some trends. Here are the top 3 trends we're seeing for 2018.
1. New Quinceanera Dresses & Theme Colors
For most quinces and sweets, we usually see the more traditional pastel colors and lighter colors, like Pink, Tiffany Blue, Emerald Green and often Red. For 2018 events, we're noticing changes. More people are breaking the traditions and going with new, different colors! We're seeing Burgundy theme colors really taking over! Darker colors are definitely a new change. New dress colors are also trending. Especially Rose Gold and now, Mariachi style Quince dresses!
Rose Gold Quinceanera Dress
Mariachi/Charro Style Quinceanera Dress
2. Beauty and the Beast & Other Disney Themes
We're also noticing that Quinceaneras are now opting to have themes, paired with music from the theme. We recently did a Quince with a Beauty and the Beast them. The Chambelan de Honor (the Quinceanera's escort) even dressed up exactly like the beast, with a Beast mask/headpiece! It was awesome! We played most of the Beauty and the Beast soundtrack, as well, for the different ceremonies.
Other Quinces are also discussing other Disney movie themes, like Cinderella, The Little Mermaid (the court is even dressing up as characters from the movie), and Frozen!
3. More Entertainment Options & Decor
We're noticing that more and more Quinces and sweets are choosing to go "all-out" and add as many options as they can. As we previously stated, Quinces and sweets are like weddings, but for 15 year olds, now. Most Quinces are planned 12-18 months in advance, and have many of the same options. From us, they'll now add a photo booth, uplighting and a personalized monogram, game systems and giant games, glow sticks and balloons, projector and screen (for slideshows and/or videos) and even now, Karaoke!
Additionally, many quinces will have limo service or a party bus, sparkler entrances/send-offs, and even choreographed father/daughter and now, mother/daughter dances, too! Things are changing for 2018 and we're excited!
Still have more questions? Be sure to contact us, today, and let's celebrate, together!
- Austin's Best DJs & Photo Booth
As certified wedding/event planners, we often work with many families to help them plan their event. Besides the timeline, ceremonies, picking the right songs for each moment, and announcements, we often get asked by people: "What do I tell female guests to wear to the quince?" It's a very popular question and not an easy question to answer.
If you haven't been to a Quince, Sweet 15 or Sweet 16 lately, then you wouldn't know that they're more and more becoming "mini-weddings!" The planning and preparation, the decor, the food, the outfits, and many other things, often take just as much time and effort as a wedding. Most quinces and sweets are planned about a year or more, in advance, just like weddings. That being said, the rules for attire are similar to weddings. Let us explain.
If you're a guest, be sure to ask what the theme colors are, or at least what colors the court will be wearing. As a male guest, you don't want to wear a tie that's the same color as what the chambelan (person who escorts the guest of honor) or members of the court will be wearing. As a female, definitely be sure to not wear the same color(s) as the dresses of the court or the guest of honor (La Quinceanera). Male or female, you can certainly wear similar colors, but not the same.
Many people don't know what to wear to Quinceaneras or sweet 15/16s. Again, a quince and/or sweet 15/16 is similar to a wedding, so it's a formal event. Leave the chanclas (flip flops) at home. :) Though you can wear "dressy" sandals, since you should be comfortable. Anything you'd wear to a wedding is suitable to wear to a quince or sweet.
Conventional suggestions for men are to wear darker colored suits or tuxedos. For women, evening gowns or cocktail dresses work well. Women should try to stay away from puffy dresses or clothing, since most quince and sweet dresses are usually puffy. To be honest, the rule for weddings is the same as quinces and sweets, people don't want to "upstage" the guest of honor.
We have seen many younger guests wear jeans and a dress shirt (men and women), which is okay, as well. Formal works best, but if formal clothing isn't available, just dress up as you see fit.
When it comes to Quinceaneras, we've got Austin and central Texas covered. We are Austin's #1 Quinceanera, Sweet 15 and Sweet 16 DJs. We also provide our DJ and photo booth services to school events and proms for every district in Travis County, and many surrounding areas. The more school events we do, the more teen events we do, and vice versa. It's a great thing for us and we're proud to be the leaders in our market! As certified wedding/event planners, we'll gladly help you plan the quince or sweet and have created our helpful forms to make it easy for you!
We hope this quick article has been helpful. As always, contact us with any questions and we'll be happy to help!
- Austin's Best DJs & Photo Booths
If you're planning a wedding, quinceanera or event, chances are, you have already created a Facebook invite, maybe an Instagram hashtag, and perhaps a wedding website. Though we're in the Austin & central Texas area, we know that this is the case for most weddings and events, worldwide! Cell phones have become such a major a part of our lives that most people simply cannot attend an event, or even go through a regular day or two, without texting, or using social media to post about their daily activities. It's the norm and it's just what we've become used to.
Believe it or not, there was a time before cell phones, where people attended weddings or events and did not take pictures with their phones (remember the old disposable cameras), did not text people, did not post on social media, etc. People simply enjoyed the event and lived in that moment. We actually attended a comedy show, with Dave Chappelle, a few weeks ago, here in Austin, Texas. Dave Chappelle created a no-phone policy and had everyone get a "Yonder" pouch upon entry. Everyone placed their phone in the pouch, and it was locked by a staff. You could keep your phone with you, but you had to have it on silent or vibrate and could not access it, until after the show, when they opened the pouch for you, at the exit. I thought wow, he must be very concerned about people taking video of the show and sharing it online; however, I also thought, wow, this is the first time I've come to an event in a while, and did not use my phone! What a brilliant idea!
Well, why not "unplug" your wedding or event? You'll already hire a photographer and possibly a videographer, so there will be plenty of great pictures and videos. If you want to share those pictures and videos with your guests, you can always post them on social media, later, or send them via email or Google drive, etc. You don't have to go and buy lockable phone pouches, but simply ask your guests to turn their phones off (or on silent) and to please not take pictures or post on social media. Then, you and your guests can fully enjoy the moment, with no distractions, just like the days before cell phones! All thanks to Dave Chappelle or to our blog! :) Just kidding, but really, it can be done!
- Austin's Best DJs & Photo Booths
If you're having a wedding, quinceanera, party or event, you'll need a "save the date" card or reminder. Sure, you can certainly make an online only version, to send to your friends and family, but it's best to send out actual cards. Why? Well, not everyone is tech savy or uses the internet well. Think about older relatives, grandparents, those who may not have internet access, etc. Plus, it's very nice to have a nice, printed version of your special event! :)
If you really want to save, then just do the online version for everyone that you know has internet access and only print invitations for those who may not, or your immediate family and close friends. You can certainly print your own, but they may not be the same quality as having them printed with a high end printer. We chose to do magnets for our save the dates, so no one misplaces them. They'll simply put them on the fridge and have a reminder! Here's a link to vistaprint. A very good option, that is also pretty economical!
Good luck and feel free to comment with other ideas!
- Austin's Best DJs Team
When you're planning a wedding, quinceanera or party, one thing you may have already found out, is that it's a lot of work! It's almost like having a part time job! We meet with clients who are having their wedding or event in the Austin or Central Texas area, every week, and they tell us exactly this! We know, from experience, just how much goes into planning, since we planned our own wedding, too! We always appreciate any helpful tips and great websites, beyond the usual Pinterest and other sites. This is actually why we write this blog, too!
One great website for all the DIY Brides and clients, is Oriental Trading. They have all types of decor and supplies for nearly any type of event. They have decor and supplies for weddings, birthdays, holiday themes, etc. For weddings, you will find wedding decorations, cake toppers, centerpieces, knife and cake servers, champagne flutes, candy for a candy bar, candles, sand for a sand ceremony, arches and columns, aisle runners, and just about anything you may need for your own wedding or event. The prices are very reasonable and the quality is good! Visit www.OrientalTrading.com and get all your supplies for your wedding or event! Good luck!
- Austin's Best DJs Team
So it's 2017 and we're still providing the same great DJ and photo booth services for Austin and central TX weddings, quinceaneras & events! Everyone wants to be "new and improved" for the new year, and though we always strive to improve, we still want to continue providing great services and wedding planning tips to all of our clients and even those who don't book with us, though we can't imagine why they wouldn't! :)
This January is our busiest January we've ever had. January tends to be a "slow" month for most DJ companies, but more and more, we're seeing weddings and events taking place in the "off season." Why? Well, you can save a lot of money! Everyone is slow in January and February, so take advantage and have your event during this time and reap the benefits! If they don't offer you a discount, simply ask! Most venues and vendors would much rather be booked at a discounted rate, than not booked at all! So go ahead, ask and see what happens. The worst that can happen is that they say no, and you decide to book somewhere else or with someone else! Good luck!
- Austin's Best DJs Team
Weddings, quinceaneras, parties, and any event where you may need a DJ or entertainment require a lot of planning and preparation. We often tell our clients that wedding and event planning can be like having a part time job! We certainly recommend that you start planning as soon as possible, to ensure you get to have the wedding or event that you want to have!
Planning 12 months or at the least 9 months, in advance, is ideal for booking your DJ, photo booth and other vendors. However, in the Austin area, you may want to plan 12-18 months in advance (if possible), to pick your wedding venue. There are only so many venues in Austin, and there are nearly 1 million people living in Austin; as we all know, more and more people moving to Austin (about 125 per day), every day! A recent study showed that Travis County netted more people moving here in 2015, than the other top 10 counties, combined! So as you can imagine, planning your wedding or event and having an available venue requires planning well in advance, especially if it's a Saturday event! Most venue owners/managers have told us that there is an 18 month wait-list for a Saturday event!
We're seeing more and more people planning 18-24 months in advance, for their event. The struggle with this, for us, is having the staff who are willing to commit to being available for an event, more than 12 months in advance. Our general rule is that we only book out up to 12 months in advance. Due to the increasing demand, however, we may change it to 18 months, since we're seeing the trend of early wedding and event planning!
So overall, the earlier you plan, the better! Don't forget, we offer wedding (ceremony and reception) and event (parties, quinceaneras, etcetera) planning assistance, FREE! Don't take on this task, alone! We're here to help you plan and we also offer FREE day-of-event-coordination, too! We want our couples and clients to simply show up, the day of their event, and have fun! Leave the stress to us! :)
- Austin's Best DJs Team
Austin's Best DJs
We've taken our decades of experience and compiled it into a few helpful articles, to help you plan your wedding or event!