According to the press, modest changes (at a cost of $590,000) were done to the room compared to the dramatic makeover earlier this year of the family dining room. Seeing as the State dining room decoration dates back to 1998- was it time for a change or is it better left alone? I’m not a fan of the color scheme or the drapery fabrication or dressing and what’s up with the brown horsehair dining chairs?
What was Done
The chairs were switched out; new custom draperies at the windows and two new custom woven rugs which anchored the makeover.
Mahogany side chairs and arm chairs, custom-made in North Carolina, replaced a set that was upholstered in a golden yellow fabric. The new chairs are done in a brown, grid-patterned ‘horsehair’ fabric and trimmed with brass nail heads. They were modeled after arm chairs that President James Monroe acquired for the East Room in 1818 from a cabinetmaker in Washington’s Georgetown neighborhood.
The new custom-made, wool rugs arrived in 2012 spurring the rest of the refurbishing. The rug design used elements of the room’s ceiling to create a border of continuous wreaths and a blue-green mottled field designed with oak leaves. Two rugs were made so they can be switched out for cleaning.
The silk draperies and valances in stripes of peacock blue and ecru echoes the “Kailua” blue that trims the modern-inspired china service the first lady unveiled in April . A blue woven tape is down each leading edge and what looks like unlined cream silk make up the under draperies. The Kingston valances hang from gilded poles and replace scalloped valances and curtains made of ivory silk brocade and designed with flowers, baskets and ribbons.
The $590,000 tab was paid by the White House Endowment Trust.