Melania Trump plans to renovate the Rose Garden. See the other changes the first lady has made to the White House.

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This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows refreshed wall fabric in the Red Room of the White House in Washington. AP Photo/Patrick Semansky First lady Melania Trump has plans to renovate the White House Rose Garden, her office announced on Monday. Under her direction, the Red, Blue, Green, and Diplomatic rooms […]

This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows refreshed wall fabric in the Red Room of the White House in Washington.
This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows refreshed wall fabric in the Red Room of the White House in Washington.

AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

  • First lady Melania Trump has plans to renovate the White House Rose Garden, her office announced on Monday.

  • Under her direction, the Red, Blue, Green, and Diplomatic rooms have all had touch-ups, as has the bowling alley in the White House residence that dates to the Nixon administration.

  • Previously, she let the AP see refurbishments she requested for the White House, ahead of the Trump’s second official state dinner with Australia in September 2019.

  • Visit Business Insider’s homepage for more stories.

She’s done a lot with the place.

Like anyone who has ever spruced up their home, Melania Trump had a few new touches to showcase when guests visited the White House for only the second state dinner of the Trump presidency in September 2019.

And she hasn’t stopped there. On Monday, the first lady announced plans to renovate the Rose Garden, including technical updates to make it easier to broadcast press conferences and other events on TV.

There’s also refreshed wall fabric in the Red Room, repurposed draperies in the Green Room, and restored furniture in the Blue Room. And those are just some of the home improvement projects the first lady has overseen to keep the well-trod public rooms at 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. looking their museum-quality best.

Some of the projects were long overdue. Here’s a look at some of the specific changes she requested for the “People’s House.”

Sunlight streaming into the Red Room had left some of the wall fabric “so faded it was almost pink,” said Stewart McLaurin, president of the White House Historical Association, which helps finance upkeep of some rooms in the 132-room mansion.

This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows refreshed wall fabric in the Red Room of the White House in Washington.
This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows refreshed wall fabric in the Red Room of the White House in Washington.

AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

First lady Jacqueline Kennedy founded the private, nonprofit organization in 1961.

“Those rooms should always look their very best and it was just very faded and really, really needed to be done,” McLaurin said.

Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his wife, Jenny, and guests for Friday’s three-course state dinner in their honor should have an opportunity to check out the spiffed-up public rooms.

In her role as caretaker, the first lady — whoever she is — meets regularly with the chief usher, the head curator and other White House staff to figure out what improvements should top the to-do list.

Trump, who keeps a relatively low profile as first lady, has put her interest in history to use overseeing the restoration projects.

This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows refreshed wall fabric in the Red Room of the White House in Washington.
This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows refreshed wall fabric in the Red Room of the White House in Washington.

AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

“Our family is grateful to live in this true symbol of our nation’s history, but we are even more honored to play a part in restoring and enhancing our country’s sacred landmark,” she said at a May 2019 reception.

The first lady designed a new rug for the Diplomatic Reception Room, the main entrance off the South Lawn, after foot traffic wore a path across the old one, McLaurin said.

President Donald J. Trump addresses his remarks on the humanitarian crisis on our southern border and the partial government shutdown Saturday, January 19, 2019, in the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House.
President Donald J. Trump addresses his remarks on the humanitarian crisis on our southern border and the partial government shutdown Saturday, January 19, 2019, in the Diplomatic Reception Room of the White House.

Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead

The replacement has a border showing the flowers of the 50 states, a touch added by the first lady.

The White House also refreshed draperies in the Green Room by switching material from the backside to the front, eliminating the need — and cost — of replacing the curtains entirely, McLaurin said. Only the fringe had to be replaced.

This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows repurposed draperies in the Green Room of the White House in Washington, which are among the improvement projects that first lady Melania Trump has overseen to keep the well-trod public rooms at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue looking their museum-quality best.
This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows repurposed draperies in the Green Room of the White House in Washington, which are among the improvement projects that first lady Melania Trump has overseen to keep the well-trod public rooms at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue looking their museum-quality best.

AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

In 2018, Trump returned to the Blue Room several restored pieces from a historic 53-piece furniture set known as the Bellangé suite.

This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows restored furniture in the Blue Room of the White House in Washington.
This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows restored furniture in the Blue Room of the White House in Washington.

AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

Decor upgrades are a bit more complicated at the White House than for typical homeowners.

This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows a portrait of former first lady Edith Roosevelt, right, wife of President Theodore Roosevelt, in the Green Room of the White House in Washington.
This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows a portrait of former first lady Edith Roosevelt, right, wife of President Theodore Roosevelt, in the Green Room of the White House in Washington.

AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

Renovation ideas are shared with the Kennedy-created Committee for the Preservation of the White House, which provides advice on preserving the public rooms on the Ground and State floors.

The committee requests funding from the historical association, whose board typically authorizes spending $1 million to $1.5 million on such projects each year.

The White House serves several purposes: It’s an office for the president and his staff, a home for his family and a living museum. Approximately half a million tourists visit every year, apart from dignitaries and others who attend receptions and other events.

“The White House does get a lot of wear and tear,” McLaurin said.

The Bellange suite furnishings were brought to the White House in 1817 by President James Monroe, formerly the US ambassador to France. But in 1860, nearly all the pieces were sold at an auction.

This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows a piece of restored furniture in the Blue Room of the White House in Washington.
This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows a piece of restored furniture in the Blue Room of the White House in Washington.

AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

One hundred years later, Jacqueline Kennedy arrived and was appalled to discover the White House was furnished with reproductions from a New York department store, McLaurin said. She created the historical association, the advisory committee and a curator to help the White House collect and exhibit only the best, McLaurin said.

The White House has managed to reacquire 10 pieces from the original suite, made in Paris by Pierre-Antoine Bellangé. The rest of the collection is “lost to history,” McLaurin said.

The Bellangé restoration project began during Michelle Obama’s time as first lady and was completed in 2018, costing the historical association more than $450,000 since 2013.

This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows a restored chair in the Blue Room of the White House in Washington.
This Sept. 17, 2019, photo shows a restored chair in the Blue Room of the White House in Washington.

AP Photo/Patrick Semansky

The wood, brass, and lighting inside an elevator that takes the president to and from the private living quarters has also been refinished.

Next up? New upholstery on chairs and benches in the high-traffic Diplomatic Reception Room.

Trump also renovated a bowling alley in the White House residence that dates to the Nixon administration.

First Lady Melania Trump watches her bowling ball travel down the lane during a Be Best bowling event with children of Secret Service agents Tuesday, April 30, 2019, in the bowling alley of the White House.
First Lady Melania Trump watches her bowling ball travel down the lane during a Be Best bowling event with children of Secret Service agents Tuesday, April 30, 2019, in the bowling alley of the White House.

Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks

It was last renovated in 1994 under President Bill Clinton. The Bowling Proprietors’ Association of America paid for the renovation.

During the Obama years, the red carpet in the Cross Hall, or hallway, on the State Floor was replaced.

First Lady Melania Trump reviews the Christmas decorations Sunday, Nov. 25, 2018, in the Cross Hall of the White House.
First Lady Melania Trump reviews the Christmas decorations Sunday, Nov. 25, 2018, in the Cross Hall of the White House.

Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks

Obama also oversaw projects with an eye on leaving her family’s mark on the White House, as is the case with every president and first lady. She replaced the rug, draperies and high-back chairs around the table in the State Dining Room.

Obama also updated the Old Family Dining Room, a smaller room adjacent to the State Dining Room, by swapping its sunny yellow walls and drapery and light-toned rug for gray walls, contrasting red draperies and a rug with a contemporary design.

Four works of American abstract art also were added to the Old Family Dining Room, including a work that made Alma Thomas the first African-American female artist featured in the White House collection.

In October 2019, Trump announced plans for a 1,200-square-foot tennis pavilion.

First Lady Melania Trump turns soil with a ceremonial shovel at the groundbreaking ceremony for the White House Tennis Pavilion on Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2019, on the south grounds of the White House.
First Lady Melania Trump turns soil with a ceremonial shovel at the groundbreaking ceremony for the White House Tennis Pavilion on Tuesday, Oct. 8, 2019, on the south grounds of the White House.

Official White House Photo by Andrea Hanks

CNN reported that private donors funded that project.

On Monday, the first lady announced renovations for the Rose Garden, including technical updates to make it easier to broadcast press conferences and other events on TV.

President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump talk in the Rose Garden of the White House Friday, Sept. 20, 2019, prior to the State Dinner in honor of the Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his wife Mrs. Jenny Morrison.
President Donald J. Trump and First Lady Melania Trump talk in the Rose Garden of the White House Friday, Sept. 20, 2019, prior to the State Dinner in honor of the Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his wife Mrs. Jenny Morrison.

Official White House Photo by Shealah Craighead

“The plans include improved Americans with Disabilities Act accessibility, utilities, and support for audiovisual and broadcasting needs that will allow for the continued enjoyment of the garden’s natural beauty and storied history,” her office said in a statement.

Her office released a 241-page report on the history of the White House grounds and their plans to update them.

First Lady Melania Trump's stiletto heel is seen as she walks along the West Wing Colonnade Tuesday, May 7, 2019, prior to welcoming guests to the one year anniversary celebration of her Be Best initiative in the Rose Garden of the White House.
First Lady Melania Trump’s stiletto heel is seen as she walks along the West Wing Colonnade Tuesday, May 7, 2019, prior to welcoming guests to the one year anniversary celebration of her Be Best initiative in the Rose Garden of the White House.

Official White House Photo by Stephanie Chasez

The document outlines how former first lady Jacqueline Kennedy tasked Rachel Lambert “Bunny” Mellon with implementing the Rose Garden in 1962.

“The refreshment of the Rose Garden will return it to its original ’62 footprint and help ensure it will thrive with improved infrastructure, better drainage, and a healthier environment for plantings that reduce the risk of leaf blight,” the first lady’s office said in its statement.

It’s unclear how much the project will cost.

Read the original article on Business Insider

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