Sunday, October 26, 2008

The White House Bedroom of Jackie Kennedy Onassis

Jacqueline Kennedy, 31 entered the role of First Lady by declaring that her priorities were her young children and maintaining her family's privacy. Nevertheless, during the weeks before the inauguration, she began her plans to not only redecorate the family quarters of the White House but to historically restore the public rooms. She created a committee of advisers led by Americana expert Henry Dupont, with sub-committees led by experts on painting, furniture and books. By March 1961, Jacqueline Kennedy was scouring government warehouses in search of displaced White House furnishings, and soliciting the nation to donate important historical and artistic items.
I love Jackie Kennedy's clothing style!

As part of this effort, she successfully pressed Senator Clint Anderson and the 87th Congress to pass what became Public Law 87286 that would make such donated items the inalienable property of the White House.
Since the restoration project was privately funded, she helped to create a White House Historical Association, an entity which was able to raise funds through the sale to the public of a book she conceived, The White House: An Historic Guide. She also successfully pressed for the creation of the federal position of White House Curator to permanently continue the effort of protecting the historical integrity of the mansion. Her legacy of fostering an national interest in historic preservation extended to her own "neighborhood," when she reversed a previous federal plan to destroy the historic Lafayette Square across from the White House and helped to negotiate not only a restoration of old buildings there, but a reasonable construction of new buildings with modern use.
Personally, I love the bedroom Jackie Kennedy redecorated while first lady of the White House. She retreated there frequently to read articles, her favorite books and write letters to family friends. Her bed comprised of two single standard sized beds, with a seat overlooking the bed, used by family to visit her while recuperating with one of her miscarriages. At the end of the bed you can see many books, magazines and inspirational writings that she kept nearby to read in the sitting area. 

Above: The Master Bedroom around 1963, looking west (Kennedy Library)

Above: The Master Bedroom in 1962, looking southwest (Kennedy Library)
The sitting area’s focal point is a fireplace, adorned with pictures and a bust on the mantel. Surrounded throughout the bedroom are family photos and beautifully upholstered furniture in romantic prints.

Above: The Master Bedroom in 1962, looking southeast (Kennedy Library)

Often sketching designs for her clothing as First Lady, Jacqueline Kennedy fashion immediately drew international attention; more than any other First Ladies her style was copied by commercial manufacturers and a large segment of young women. While she appeared largely in the media in unauthorized wire service photographs and "paparazzi" snapshots, White House photographs were more frequently issued to the press than ever before and the role of the official in-house photographer was instigated as a result of Jacqueline Kennedy's own interest and instruction. She also made several television appearances, the most prominent being A Tour of the White House with Mrs. John F. Kennedy, aired on CBS on February 14, 1962. It was the first glimpse into her restoration project and the most sustained exposure the nation had to this youthful and unique First Lady. The television special only further fueled media attention on her and she soon became the first First Lady to find herself on the cover of thousands of popular magazines. The first First Lady to also have her own press secretary, her visibility would permanently forge the media interest in the activities of the presidential spouses.

Wednesday, April 2, 2008

The Past Is How I Wandered To My Future

I was born and spent the first few years of my life in Germiston, South Africa before moving to a 22 acre farm in the middle of nowhere, now known as Centurian. Our home was referred to as The Broken House, and I have fond memories of going to the dairy farmer across the road to buy milk and to visit our neighbors the Swanepoel's who had a cattle farm and many children to play with. My parents along with several other partners, an investor and their wives started Inter Avionics, an avionics aviation business which to this day has also florished to Australia and the States.

At a young age I was very enthusiastic to start school. My parents enrolled me in St. Ursula's Convent, but during the countries political unrest, my parents  moved to Rivonia. I attended Rivonia Primary until my mother, sister and I moved to England when I was eight, where it was a lot safer. My mom, who had been a bookeeper and internal auditor for Price Waterhouse, found work assisting the aged as a mental health carer.

My childhood in England was idyllic. We lived in a quaint village along the river Sowe. Growing up my sister and I would play for countless hours, we'd also run to the meadows to pick flowers and onetime we went to St. Mary's Church along Vicarage road and placed flowers atop several gravestones. 

My passion for design started as young as eight, when I'd make houses out of the building materials left on our land. Later on, while living in England we often visited historic castles and estates. Summers were spent with my Nanna, mom and sister and we'd travel to the Peak District, South West England, or France. After attending Woodles Primary, I went to Kenilworth High at age eleven where I made many friends and sat on student council as well as the Warwick Council's town planning board. I was selected from just a few pupils in our county. I enjoyed town planning, and design so much I'd spend my time creatively drawing floorplans.
{I need to scan in photos from my mom's home, she has lots of eight to fourteen years photos}.

My first job was at age fourteen. I had a small newspaper route in Stoneleigh, and my mom would help so I could catch the bus in time for school. Also, I worked as a companion to Mrs. Spires, who was an elderly lady in the village. I'd visit her every Saturday and we'd share tea. She had no children, or grandchildren, so she enjoyed having my mom, sister and I visiting. That summer, was also the first time I went back to South Africa, and every summer thereafter, my grandmother, sister and I would spend time with my dad in the States. Over the years we've travelled to Yellowstone, Hawaii, Salt Lake, Las Vegas, Bryce Canyon, Los Angeles and British Columbia.

At sixteen, I took an art trip to Paris where we studied the likes of Rodin, Picasso and toured The Pompadour, Musee De Orsay, Monet's Gardens, Van Gough's resting place as well as other popular attractions. Then after graduting high school, I attended Warwickshire College and worked in both a bank and at a small local chocolate shop where I learned to master the art of giftwrapping. Birthdays are very special in my family. So every year, my sister and I would have a party to celebrate. My sixteenth was a joint celebration with my friend Cari, and my eighteenth was celebrated with all the family on my mom's side as well as my dearest school friends at The Ardencote Manor. It was a memorable day.

Just before I turned nineteen my dad, offered to pay for my college in the States, so that's how the two suitcases and sixty dollar story arose. I started my associates in Interior Design at Spokane Falls Community College that year and from then on, instead of summer travels, I worked each summer at my dad's business, so I could purchase a ticket to spend the Holiday's in Germany and England to visit with family and yes, I arrived to the States with only two suitcases and sixty dollars.

{Need to download more photos from my photo CD's} 
After graduating, I decided to get my bachelors of fine arts in Interior Design, and so I moved state to attend Marylhurst University. A small Catholic liberal arts university. I graduated with two degrees, in two states, after having moved to another country all by the age of twenty-four.

That year I had my first ever break-up, and within eighteen months I'd lost not one, but three of my grandparents. After college I moved in with my dad, and my life was just like the movie Post Grad. Sadly, after less than just eight weeks after my grandmother's death, my dad was diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. He passed away after a two and a half year battle in May 2013.

Cory and I met for the first time on Labor Day 2010 for a picnic. I was twenty-four had just graduated college for a second time and moved home with my dad. Cory was twenty-eight and had also graduated twice, but had moved out by himself. We had decided on BBQ, and ordered it from Famous Dave's and ate out in Columbia Point Park. We soon realized we both had a lot in common. Our first trip together was to Las Vegas for my 25th birthday.

~Our first Christmas together with Cory's parents and his maternal grandparents 2011~

~Las Vegas 2012. My mom was with us on this trip~
After twenty months together, Cory proposed, to me on my twenty-sixth birthday at the beautiful Davenport Hotel. On our way to Spokane, my Sobe bottle had 'marry me' under the lid. Maybe, just maybe it was meant to be. Later, we had a delicious dinner by the fire, before I was guided by the hostess into the Marie Antoinette Ballroom, where at the end stood Cory with petals, shaped into a heart. He proposed, and it was the bestest birthday ever. Later that year we traveled to New England for the first time.

~Christmas 2012 with my mom and sister~

~Virginia Beach~
We decided if we were going to have a large family, we'd need to secure a better financial future. So we moved to the South. We luckily rented out our home within  a week, and drove over 2,500 miles cross country. We spent the year living in Tennessee, Florida, Georgia and Coastal North Carolina before choosing to settle in Charlotte, North Carolina.
~We got married in Florida on July 31st, 2013 after nearly three years together~


~Coastal North Carolina~

The rest, my unwritten.
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