WYOMING, Michigan – Hispanic culture is about family and tradition. Wrap these two things in a nice dress, and you have a quinceanera.
But like many things, the quinceaneras were postponed during the pandemic, leaving the businesses that support the cultural life event without any businesses.
Fortunately, today these events are picking up again and businesses are taking advantage.
“We opened the business in 2018, I mean, so a year before the whole pandemic started,” said Pamela Flores Garcia, director of family business Princess Paradise.
Princess Paradise is a Wyoming boutique specializing in christening, christening and quinceanera dresses and services.
Garcia says their bestseller at Princess Paradise is the quinceanera dresses.
“The big poufy dresses, much like wedding dresses, but in different colors,” Garcia said.
As extravagant as a wedding, quinceaneras are a Hispanic tradition that every young girl dreams of.
“A quinceanera is a Hispanic tradition, where a young girl passes from a little girl to a woman,” Garcia said. “It’s like their transition from a little girl to a woman. It’s really when they come into the church and present her as a true member of the church.”
When it comes to planning a quinceanera, the dress is everything.
“The dress is really what makes any quinceanera a quinceanera,” Garcia said. “Because if you don’t have a dress, it’s a bit like the bride without a dress.”
Princess Paradise opened and thrived in its first year of business in 2018, but like all other businesses, was hit hard during the pandemic.
Forced to close for three months, the family struggled to reopen as they battled Covid within their own family.
“When we tried to come back, family members got sick. And I mean, our sales definitely went down over 50%,” Garcia said. “Usually in a good year we sell around 60 to 70 dresses. And during the COVID season, we didn’t even have half of them. Lots of dresses were canceled.”
Like weddings, homecoming, and proms, most quinceaneras have been canceled, postponed, or held privately outside to meet CDC restrictions.
But today, things are going in the right direction.
Quinceaneras are back and business in Princess Paradise is busier than ever – but this influx of business is not without its challenges.
“The dresses are ordered months in advance,” Garcia said. “So as usual, three to five months is about the average time. Right now we have to order the dresses six to eight months in advance because there is not enough of workers in the companies where they make the dresses. “
Like their distributors, Garcia and her family struggle to keep up with their customers.
“They spend hours here and we don’t have enough people to, you know, help. So I guess you could say we’re busier than we expected because we obviously don’t have enough help here to. the moment. “
But Garcia and her family hope that with the support of their clients, they can make the young girls’ dreams come true – one dress at a time.
Princess Paradise is located at 654 28th St SW, Wyoming, MI 49509.
To learn more about Princess Paradise schedules and services, click here.