Inside the White House: The Blue Room

The Blue Room is one of the most recognizable symbols in the world. It’s one of three state parlors that can be found in the White House. It’s most famous feature is probably its oval shape. Since the 1880’s, the Blue Room had been decorated in shades of blue. The room has undergone many different renovations over the years, but it has maintained its current style in some form or fashion since the 1960’s.

A little known fact about the Blue Room is that it has six different doors. The three floor to ceiling windows look out on the South Lawn of the White House. The furniture that is currently used in the Blue Room follows the French Empire style. The current suite of furniture was made in Paris in 1812, and the famous marble top table that can be seen in the center of the room has been in the White House since 1817. The gold mantel clock, which has always adorned the fireplace, also follows the French Empire style, and it was also made about 1817.

(post via Home Decorating Blog )

the white house blue room

One of the crowning pieces of the Blue Room is the 19th century French chandelier. It is made from gilded wood and hand cut class, with decorations of acanthus leaves. The chandelier was first purchased by First Lady Kennedy. The acanthus leaf pattern is repeated at various points throughout the room, as is a recurring pattern of medallions. An 1859 portrait of John Tyler hangs on the west wall of the room, just above the famous Monroe sofa.

The blue satin drapes are another easily recognizable feature of The Blue Room. They are modeled after early 1800’s, French patterns. Archive materials from the Society for the Protection of New England Antiquities were used as patterns for the drapes. The fabric used in the drapes is a sapphire blue silk, and the silk is also used in the upholstery for the furniture. This fabric was chosen by First Lady Clinton during the mid 1990’s.

barack and michelle dancing in the blue room

The walls in The Blue Room have been decorated with a chamois colored wallpaper, and the wallpaper features burnished gold medallions. The upper border of the wallpaper is created from a blue fabric, drapery swag. During the 1990’s, a new oval style carpet was introduced into the design scheme, and its inspiration was derived from neoclassical English designs, which were produced around the same time as the period furnishings.



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