Tuesday, January 20, 2009
It's Inauguration Day and I'm feeling patriotically optimistic. In that spirit, I thought I'd put up a link to two posts that the Daily Dose over at domino did recently on White House interiors, pitting the decorating styles of Nancy Reagan against those of Jackie Kennedy, WWE-style. While I think blogger Nick Olsen is perhaps a bit too hard on Nancy (I have to forgive the woman the era in which she decorated), her heavy-handed use of peach is, admittedly, almost unforgivable. While Nick ultimately crowns Jackie as the victor, I was left cold by many of her rooms, which seemed rather sparsely furnished to me. I was, however, impressed by how timeless many of Jackie's spaces felt. They didn't scream 60s in the way that Nancy's scream 80s -- though the 80s are (like it or not) making a comeback. Click here and here to see and judge for yourself.
For each of these first ladies, my favorite space was her private sitting room/office. And thankfully for Nancy, there's no peach in sight. While these rooms are more formal than anything I would put in my own home, they're perfect for the White House. Each of these spaces is relatively monochromatic, lending it a serene quality. The comfortable but not crowded furniture arrangement further enhances the relaxed mood. I'm also a big fan of the dramatic art arrangements in each room, which demonstrate that multiple small works can be arranged together to create a big impact, particularly when they are of a similar subject matter (birds and flora, respectively). The chandeliers in the spaces are also lovely. I've been thinking about replacing the nondescript light fixture in the sitting area in my master bedroom for some time now with a small chandelier and I think it would definitely up the "glam factor", just as they do in these rooms.
Jackie O.'s master sitting area
Nancy Reagan's Office