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21 Creative Quinceañera Decorations and Activities

Quinceanera Decorations

Updated on: Feb 17, 2024

So, your girl's special day is coming up: a day of elegant dresses, ceremonies, dancing, and a court of family and friends to escort her into womanhood. No, we aren't talking about her wedding. It's time for her quinceañera!

If you've clicked on this article, you probably don't need us to explain what a quinceañera is (but if you are lost, here is a great resource). Of course, a young lady's 15th birthday is a momentous occasion, and momentous occasions call for extraordinary quinceañera decorations. Not sure where to start? We got you covered: here's our list of unique quinceañera decorations and ideas that are sure to get your creative juices flowing as you plan the party of her dreams.

Choosing Quinceañera Decorations

1. Pick a Theme

Does the young honoree have a favorite color, interest, or movie? Incorporate that into the theme of the evening and in her quinceañera decorations! Carefully pick out a color scheme and stick to it, because it gets integrated into everything – tablecloths, the ribbons on the chairs, the dresses of the damas, tuxedos of the chambelanes, even the food! Popular colors these days include rose gold, lavender, Cinderella blue, and deep purple. Pick one and accent it with white/cream, silver, or gold throughout your quinceañera decorations. The contrast makes for elegant and striking decorations. There are also a variety of themes that have grown in popularity over the years, these include Mascarade, Paris, and Western themes.

2. Invitations

Once you have chosen your theme and chosen the colors that are going to be integrated throughout your quinceañera decorations, it is time to make the invitations! Making invitations can be fun and can come in all sorts of different styles. When making the invitations, one can choose the color, the type of font, and the overall theme of the invitation. Some may choose to include a photo within the envelope of the invitation or a personalized letter to the guests, the options are endless!

There are a few different ways that you can make these invitations. You can print personalized ones at home or at a printing shop, you can use email to send personalized e-vites (check out various options here), or you can fully customize them by hand. No matter which option you choose, here are some cute ideas for your quinceañera!

A blank paper on top of a letter wrapped with a very large, pink ribbon


3. Choosing the Location

Choosing the venue is one of the biggest factors in planning the theme. There are certain themes that can go with certain venues, for example, if the theme was Western, it could be a great idea to host the celebration on a ranch because it could potentially add to the effect! Halls are great options as well. Depending on the number of guests that are expected to attend, choosing the location can vary. There are many venues that offer special amenities and it is especially important to take advantage of these deals whether it's with your quinceañera decorations or your meals.

4. Dazzling Centerpieces

This is a formal event - don't be afraid to go all out on your centerpieces! These will be looked at the most throughout the evening, so pick your designs carefully based on the quinceañera decorations. We're big fans of vases or glassware filled with beads, flowers, or fairy lights. If your color scheme is warmer, consider a false tree strung with fairy lights! Such a large statement piece is usually appropriate for decorative tables (as opposed to dining tables). Faux ice sculptures are popular centerpieces for quinceañera decorations and can come with a wintry of color schemes. Whatever you decide, get creative!

5. Light the Night

Lighting is everything, dear readers. Pick a venue with beautiful and adequate lighting: many event venues have elegant chandeliers that integrate well into a formal event like a quinceañera. To create a dainty yet elegant atmosphere, use twinkling lights to outline the venue's entryway and windows. You can also purchase paper lanterns from any party suppliers to hang from the ceiling, especially in outdoor areas. There are many options on how to use your quinceañera decorations. As always, make sure the colors fit the theme of your quinceañera decorations!

Hundreds of fairy lights and paper lanterns hung in the night sky


6. Colorful Tableware

If appropriate, use fun colored plates and glasses to add flair to the dinner table but remember to match with the quinceañera decorations. If you'd rather opt for glassware, many vendors offer multicolored glassware in exciting shapes. Make sure to research ahead of time how to set the table properly, as a formal table setting adds to the elegance of the evening. Adding name tags and designated seating for guests is another way to keep count and ensure every guest is being taken care of. Depending on the type of meal distribution the family wants, giving the guests multiple plates for multiple courses can be a great idea!

7. Little Lamps

Purchase miniature lamps from craft or department stores. If you can't find lamps that match your quinceañera decorations, pull out your crafty side, and purchase plain lampshades to dress up yourself. You can use ribbon, sequins, beads, and flowers to add accent pieces to the lamps. Set the lamps on decorative tables and around the room to make the space feel brighter and more inviting.

8. Fine Flowers

Flowers are popular quinceañera decorations, but they feel especially perfect for a special young girl's coming-of-age party. Flowers can be an excellent addition to centerpieces, chairs, wall decorations, or even just strewn on the table. For a twist, pull the petals off the flowers to use instead. Sprinkle petals in the entryway to create a grand entrance. Remember to get creative when coming up with your quinceañera decorations!

A large table set with plates, silverware, and flowers


9. Memory Frames

Purchase colorful picture frames that match the quinceañera decorations from any craft or department store. Fill the frames with pictures of friends, family, and important moments from the honoree's life. You can scatter the pictures around the room, or place all of the pictures from one year in a specific area. It's a simple and classic way to celebrate the young princess's accomplishments in her first 15 years.

Quinceañera Decorations and Guest Activities

10. Creative Guest Book

Guest books are a great way to keep track of who's who and what's where, especially for the reminiscing days to come. Though traditional write-in guest books are elegant and appropriate, consider different options for guests to write notes. One retailer is offering a Connect Four-style guest book, where guests write their names and a note on a wooden circle and add it to the game board as if they were playing Connect Four. Other ideas include writing notes to hang on a tree (remember the centerpiece suggestion from earlier?) or leave in a card box.

A pencil atop a journal


11. The Waltz

The Waltz is a choreographed dance routine that requires months or practice and can be very time-consuming. The Court of Honor is usually composed of the closest family and friends of the quinceañera. She must hand select these individuals to join her and commit to her ceremony. Because of how important this ceremony is to the young lady, her parents could either teach the Waltz themselves, or hire a professional choreographer to help. The Waltz is typically elegant and graceful while its being performed and allows the quinceañera to remain the main focus.

12. Surprise Dance by the Court of Honor

The Court of Honor, damas and chambelanes, can perform a choreographed dance. This dance can vary from Tango, Hip-hop, Bachata, etc and is mainly for the entertainment of the guests. The purpose is to give the Court of Honor the chance to invite guests who are close by to join them on the dance floor for a group dance.

13. Card Box

Speaking of card boxes, who said it had to be a box? Depending on your theme, you could opt for a wooden chest, an old suitcase, a birdhouse, or a converted fishbowl! It all comes down to color and theming – if it goes, then go for it. Card boxes can be a great opportunity for guests to engage and connect with the young woman. Carefully using similar quinceañera decorations, decorate the box and the area it is surrounded by. Once the party is over, she will return to read all of her letters which can be an emotional moment for her!

14. Photo Booth Fun

This is her special day, and guests will want to remember it. Consider getting a photographer and setting up a photo booth. The photo booth must have excellent quinceañera decorations to catch the eyes of the guests. Because the occasion calls for an elegant setup (and not just some cloth background and props), carefully construct your backdrop for your photo booth. Some quince photo booths feature a wall completely adorned with flowers that compliment the honoree's dress. Others feature chiffon curtains hung with fairy lights and decorated with beads and garlands. The possibilities are endless.

A white couch inside a furniture store


15. Girls-ask-Boys Dance

To keep the ambiance light-hearted and fun, the DJ can be asked to announce that all girls must ask a boy of their choosing to dance. This does not need to be based on boyfriends and girlfriends, more so just someone to dance with. A good idea would be to have the woman of honor, the quinceañera, to ask her brother or father to dance with her.

16. Surprise Gift Card

Prior to the arrival of the guests, tape a gift card of some sort to one or two of the guest seats. As the night goes on and time passes, ask the DJ to ask all of the guests to check under their seats to possibly uncover a gift card! This is a fun way to bring excitement and engage everyone's enthusiasm.

17. Father and Daughter Dance

Halfway through the evening, it is a tradition that every quinceañera has a moment alone on the dance floor with her father. This is a special moment between the two individuals and usually a special and meaningful song will play which shows the young woman's coming of age.

A man and a woman in formal attire dancing together


18. Gift Reception

The gift reception is a moment where the guests can give the birthday girl her gifts. Typically, the gift reception area will have beautiful quinceanera decorations to catch the eye of the guest Because the ceremony's purpose serves as a reminder that the young girl is now a woman, the gifts can vary in styles. Most gifts received are gifts that can be given to older children rather than younger children. One of the more popular gifts that are given to the young girl, usually by her parents, is a beautiful porcelain doll. This doll usually resembles the quinceañera by what she is wearing and serves as a reminder that she is growing beautifully. This doll is used to constantly remind the young women of their big day. Other gifts can include more religious items such as a bible or a rosary.

19. Slide Show

Include a slide show of moments prior to the quince. These photos can include cute baby photos of the quinceañera as well as those of her growing up. Including photos of the family, goofy or not, are also options to include in the slide show. This is also a great quinceañera decoration. court of honor could also be included in the slide show, (Dance rehearsals must have been funny as well)!

20. The Toast

The toast to the daughter is a very personal and empowering for the young woman. The parents of the quince are usually the one's who give their young girl a toast. The toast is typically used to applaud their daughter for all of the hard work she has done and all that she has achieved. This moment can be very meaningful because it allows those around her to see and understand how great of a person she is. This also gives family friends the opportunity to get to know her a little bit better.

Several people clanking wine glasses together


21. Music and Dancing

When such a huge event is taking place, it is only appropriate that there be loud music throughout the evening to engage the guests and increase the likelihood of them having fun. There are a variety of options when selecting what types of music can be played. These include but aren't limited to a live Mariachi Band, Classical Music, or hiring a DJ to liven the crowd. If at all possible, the DJ could also release fog from those fog machines which adds fun and excitement!

Quinceanera Decorations: Conclusion

There you have it – a list of quinceañera decorations and activities that will kickstart your creativity and give your girl the night of her dreams. It's going to be amazing! If you're looking for more, we can help with budgets, planning guides, and party favors as well.

Written by Jessica Clark, Jillian Smith and Tiawnie Castrejon

Tiawnie Castrejon

California State University Stanislaus

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