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Quinceanera Planning: How to Dodge the Top 15 Don’ts

There are so many details involved in pulling off a truly fabulous Quinceanera that you’re bound to miss something—unless you have us to help! We’ve gathered the 15 most common things not to do, and what things to do to make your Quince the party with the dance floor crowded to overflowing, and your speech the best Quinceanera speech your guests have ever heard. Stick with us, and we’ll help you have a Quince to be more than proud of!

#1: Don’t Feel Obligated Overdo the Makeup

Just because your Quinceanera is your first party as a young woman, you do not need tons of makeup to look grown up. A little makeup goes a long way and will make you feel much more comfortable. You definitely don’t want to look back at your portraits with all that goop and glitter on your face and say, “What in the world was I thinking?”

#2: Don’t Buy your Gown Before You Book the Venue

Of course, you can wear any beautiful Quinceanera dress you want, but it’s still preferable to book the venue first so that you can get the feel of the place. All venues have some type of style, and you don’t want to look either underdressed in a super-fancy hotel ballroom or overdressed in a simple church banquet hall.

#3: Don’t Crash Diet to Fit into Your Dress

Your birthday will be here before you know it, so just like you’re carefully planning your Quinceanera day timeline, also plan an exercise routine and a healthy diet at least 6 months beforehand. Believe it or not, a healthy body and clear skin are the most beautiful things you can wear on this important day—even more important that your gorgeous Quinceanera dress!

#4: Don’t Underestimate How Long it Takes To Do Hair & Makeup

It’s always better to run early than late, so budget in a minimum of two hours to get gorgeous. Plus you’ll need some time for photos without feeling rushed. Also, do everything you can to arrive at the church on time. If the Quinceanera girl is late, everything will fall behind schedule.

For some great tips on how to plan your Quinceanera day timeline, check out our blog: http://qbydavinci.com/blog/your-quinceanera-day-checklist/

#5: Don’t Wear Killer Heels All Day Long

Even if you’re used to wearing high heels or platforms, you’ll be doing a lot more walking and dancing on our Quinceanera day than you ever would on a regular day. Naturally, you’ll wear flats for the Mass, but even after you change your shoes for the waltz and other dances, don’t wear those heels all night long.

Switch back and forth from killer to comfortable shoes a few times. And to look really smashing after the surprise dance, have a 3rd pair of fancier shoes like low-heel sandals with your shorter skirt rather than wear Converse all night long. Sneaks are fun, but even glitter kicks don’t look as classy as a cute sandal.

#6: Don’t Forget To Eat

There’s nothing worse than being light-headed, dehydrated, and moody on your Quinceanera! Yes, you’re going to have a huge dinner and cake and maybe appetizers and a sweets table, too. But you still need a healthy breakfast before you start getting ready.

Also take a little lunch bag with half a sandwich and a piece of fruit to eat while you’re traveling from the ceremony to the reception hall. Even if there’s a huge spread of appetizers already laid out, you’re going to be busy greeting your guests, so don’t do that on an empty stomach!

Also, make sure to drink plenty of water throughout the day, maybe even put out chilled miniature water bottles at the reception for everybody.

When It Comes to Decorating Your Venue:

#8: Don’t Over-Do the Decorations

A few beautiful and carefully placed arrangements go a long way. You don’t need to include every element of your theme in every piece of decor. Instead, focus on “less is more” and make a few truly individual pieces stand out.

#7: Don’t Hide the Venue’s Best Features

When you’re looking at venues, you want one that can match or blend with your theme, or that can be shaped the way you want it. But you also want to highlight the room’s best features. For example, if your venue has stunning floor to ceiling windows with an amazing view, make those the focal point of your decor.

The biggest advantage of a beautiful venue is that you can spend a lot less money on decorations!

When It Comes To Taking Good Care Of Your People:

#9: Don’t Make Guests Wait Around without Snacks

The longer the delay between your Mass and your reception, the more people will tend to get bored and maybe even want to just go home.

If there’s no way to avoid the wait, see if you can set up a hospitality room either in the church while you have your photos done, or in the foyer of the reception venue. Many upscale hotels and ballrooms will set up tables with snacks and drinks before the doors to the main hall are open.

The best thing, though, is to minimize the time gap by having all of your Quinceanera court photos and your personal portraits completely done with before the Mass. Then the only pictures left will be a few taken in the sanctuary.

#10: Don’t Forget to Provide Food for Your Vendors

Just the same as you need to make sure you yourself have a snack and something to drink, you need to provide for your photographer, videographer, and DJ. Make sure to offer bottled water and tell them to help themselves to the snacks you put out for your guests.

If you can’t afford to serve them the same meal as your guests, you must make sure that the caterer provides a less expensive meal that’s still balanced. And if at all possible, let them help themselves to the appetizers and the sweets table.

Not only will they appreciate your hospitality, but they’ll work all the harder because they ‘ll know you truly appreciate their services and attention to detail.

#11: Don’t Forget to Give Your DJ a Don’t Playlist

It’s reasonably easy to remember to work up a playlist of what you want to hear at your Quince, but just as important is a list of numbers you do not want to be played. Nothing is more annoying—and distracting—to a DJ than for you or your family to correct his or her choice of music during the party.

Also, make sure to work out ahead of time how the DJ is willing to take requests. Maybe instead of guests trying to talk to the DJ personally, put out some paper and pencil for the guests to write requests on, then put those in a jar or container, much like you’d ask for a karaoke number. Then the DJ can work those songs into the set without being interrupted and losing track of the flow of the party.

You could also burn a CD or make a tape for your limo driver to play during the ride between the ceremony and the reception.

When It Comes To Etiquette:

#12: Don’t Forget to Say Hello to Everyone

No matter how busy—and you will be busy and distracted trying to keep track of your shoes and your speech and the dances—you absolutely must find time to say hello to everyone. An easy way to do this is to give your photographer a list of table numbers, then as you go around taking table pictures, you can take a few moments to personally thank everyone at that table.

#13: Don’t Forget Thank You’s in your Toast

It can be tempting to underestimate the value of your Quinceanera toast when it comes to thanking people. So as you work hard to prepare your speech, don’t be afraid to write a few notes on a small card or two.

It’s not easy to talk in front of a large crowd if it’s your first time speaking in public, so write out your entire speech, practice and memorize most of it, then make one or two cards with prompts that include a thank you to each person who helped put your party together, especially your padrinos and padrinas.

It’s also thoughtful to thank your photo, video and music people during your toast, so make a note to mention them.

#14: Don’t Forget to Mail Thank-You Cards Promptly

Some guests will travel a long way to be with you, and others will actually cancel personal plans in order to come to your Quinceanera. The very least you can do is to send sincere thank you notes no less than two weeks after your party. And if you can, send them within one week after the party. This will let people know you’re truly grateful and that you’re the thoughtful, responsible young lady your Quinceanera represents you to be!

And now we come to the one last “don’t” that can prevent almost all of the other 14 Don’ts plus you won’t stress nearly as much when it comes to planning in the first place:

#15: Don’t Rule Out Hiring an Event Planner

You want everyone to enjoy your party including yourself and your parents. So why take on the stress and worry about all those little details when a good event planner can stay on top of everything for you?

A professional Quinceanera planner will also avoid almost all of the mistakes we’ve mentioned here, plus others you’d never even think of. Hiring an event planner is a big decision, but you just might find it to be the best investment you make when it comes to planning your Quince and guaranteeing you’ll successfully dodge all those don’ts!

For some great advice on why and how to hire a Quinceanera event planner, check out our blog: http://qbydavinci.com/blog/Quinceanera-planning-guide-should-you-hire-a-professional-event-planner/