A Quinceaneras Party Fit For A Princess The big white dress. The attendants. The limo. The reception. The cake. It's the milestone you've been dreaming about since you were little. The day when, dressed as a princess with all eyes on you, you mark your entry into womanhood. This rite of passage, full of music, pomp, circumstance and family, is rich in tradition and culture, and is one of the few Latin American occasions celebrated from Mexico to Argentina. Although the tradition dates back to the 1500s, your mom didn't put her invitations on a Web page or shop for a band at a quinceañera party expo or take a quinceañera cruise or watch the most outrageous quinceañeras on MTV. Chances are , she didn't have a quinceaneras party planner to convince her not to start out playing the reggaeton music she loves. And we bet she didn't invite Mickey and Minnie to join the event as special guests, dressed in elegant attire. While some parents still hold their parties in a church hall, cook their own food and make their daughter's dresses, they are a minority. Today, families spend an average of $5,000 to $10,000 on their daughters debutante balls. Even among families with modest incomes, quinceañeras have become pricier and more flamboyant than ever. So how can you and the other 400,000 chicas celebrating their quinceañera this year make it the best coming-of-age party ever? We've compiled some tricks and tips to get you started. First, remember that no rules are written in stone. If any of the traditions don't fit with the way you would like to celebrate, there's no reason they can't be adapted to work with your plans. Don't be intimidated by what you see on reality TV. Bring your imagination and creativity to the nearest dollar store. They are great sources for boxes to put mints in, baskets for table arrangements, party favors and decorations. It is more important to honor those you feel close to than adhering to the book. Don't leave out stepfathers, grandfathers, or other special family members. Ask people really important to you to contribute, not just in a financial way but in helping you plan. Get an aunt to be the godmother of the dress or the music. What makes quinceañeras so special is that they're such community-oriented occasions. If you're inviting a lot of friends who are not Latin, think about having a salsa lesson for everyone early on in the quinceaneras party. When it comes to the father-daughter dance, you can put on your favorite Top Ten song as long as the lyrics are appropriate, and your father agrees, of course. While it's traditional to have a court of 15, it's no longer the rule. Just keep the number of guys and girls even. Instead of giving your court jewelry as a gift, think about a meaningful book like by Julia Alvarez. How the Garcia Girls Lost Their Accent Throw a great quinceaneras party with helpful tips and advice from BeingGirl.com.