In honor of President's Day (and because you all know how much I love entertaining!), I thought it would be fun to do a quick, little post on Presidential China. Here's a brief look at some presidential "firsts" and some of my personal favorites. Enjoy!
While James Monroe china was the first to be designed specifically for an American president back in 1820, it was James K. Polk's china some twenty years later that was the first to be designed with a shield of stars and stripes, rather than the usually featured eagle motif. Produced by the Parisian firm Edouard Honoré, Polk's rococo-style dinner and dessert pieces are considered to be among the most beautiful of all presidential china. Personally, I love geraniums, and this color palette is gorgeous!
And how chic was the china that the infamously gracious Dolley Madison chose? Unlike most presidential china, this design has no central motif, but is decorated with a border of wheel patterns in white and black on a mustard band. Unfortunately, there are very few original pieces of this china remaining, since the Madisons were in the White House when it was looted and burned during the War of 1812! What a shame! But with this stunning set, can't you just see a lavish state dinner with herbed roasted rack of lamb? I want an invitation! Don't you?
This bright red pattern from James Monroe I love because although it does have the traditional eagle motif, there's a Chinoiserie feel to it that's totally modern.
In fact, if you look closely, you can find modern designs today that have similarities to presidential china. For instance, Thomas Jefferson used this beautiful blue and white set which totally reminds me of a current pattern called Blue Lace from Mottahedah.
Can't wait to see what the Obamas pick! Any suggestions?