America’s popular first lady is bringing her impeccable style and elegance to the White House.
President Trump and wife Melania are getting ready to host their second state dinner at the White House and will be able to show off some needed improvements and restorations.
In keeping with the museum-like quality of the rooms that are accessible to the public, the first lady has had everything from wall fabric to furniture repaired or replaced, Time magazine reported.
First lady Melania Trump gives the White House a makeover https://t.co/e5FiM42DHL
— TIME (@TIME) September 17, 2019
“Those rooms should always look their very best and it was just very faded and really, really needed to be done,” Stewart McLaurin, president of the White House Historical Association told Time.
The White House Historical Committee works closely with the Association and typically receives $1 – 1.5 million for restoration projects every year. Mrs. Trump has been working with a team of curators, the Historical Association and Historical Committee, as well as White House staff to determine what restoration projects need priority.
“The White House does get a lot of wear and tear,” McLaurin said.
The people’s house sees approximately half a million visitors each year, excluding dignitaries and special guests of the President and first lady.
In a thrifty move, Mrs. Trump refreshed the Green Room’s draperies by flipping the material from the backside to the front, Time reported. The fringe on the curtains was the only thing that needed to be added, saving time and money.
Sunlight had reportedly stripped the Red Room of some of its color, fading the wall fabric until it had become “so faded it was almost pink.”
She’s also added her own personal touches where appropriate while respecting the history of the famous rooms.
A new rug was designed by the first lady for the Diplomatic Reception Room after a path was worn by foot traffic, McLaurin said. The border of the new rug showcases flowers of the 50 states, and is a touch that is all Melania, according to Time.
A preview of the renovations can be seen in the video below, where the first lady is praised for her taste and respect for the White House’s history:
Perhaps Mrs. Trump’s most notable contribution to the White House restorations was last year’s addition to the Blue Room.
The first lady was able to recover and return several “restored pieces from a historic 53-piece set know as the Bellangé suite,” Time reported.
The famous furnishings were brought to the White House in 1817 by President James Monroe. One hundred years later Jacqueline Kennedy arrived and was shocked to learn that they had been replaced in 1860 and the room was filled with “reproductions from a New York department store,” McLaurin said.
The late-first lady had the wherewithal to create the committee and a curator to recover, restore, and protect historical pieces in the White House.
Thus far, the White House has reacquired 10 pieces of from the original suite, but the rest of the collection is “lost to history,” McLaurin said.
That doesn’t mean that first ladies can’t put their signature style on certain pieces like Mrs. Trump did with the flower-adorned rug.
Mrs. Obama replaced carpets, rugs and furnishings as did most of her predecessors, Time reported.
But perhaps no restoration has been more fun than the updated bowling alley. In January 2017 liberals had a fit when the Trump family dared to have a good time in the newly renovated play room.
“Family bowling session at the White House,” Donald Trump Jr. happily tweeted with now ex-wife Venessa Trump.
Family bowling session at The White House. @MrsVanessaTrump doing pretty well considering she’s in heels? #bowling pic.twitter.com/tfPCmpDliG
— Donald Trump Jr. (@DonaldJTrumpJr) January 21, 2017
BPR reported at the time:
The bowling alley is used more by White House staffers, Secret Service and the occasional party loyalist than presidents. It’s not clear if former President Barack Obama ever used the lane, though he reportedly spent his 48th birthday bowling at Camp David.
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