360° Painting 101: Painting & The Presidency

360° Painting 101: Painting & The Presidency

Did you know that 360° Painting continues a long historical tradition of painting houses? In fact, our noble profession has even been tied up with the presidency! The White House may appear to be a monolithic, unchanging symbol of the presidency, but it is actually an ever-evolving reflection of the stylistic zeitgeist. Each presidency not only changes the interior of the house, but some earlier presidents even revised and added portions to the exterior, including painting the walls and wallpapering important rooms. 

The first president to live at the White House was actually John Adams; President George Washington was based in New York and, according to the White House website, the cornerstone wasn’t laid until 1792. So, in order to include all the presidents, we’ll also look at President George Washington’s personal home, Mount Vernon, just outside the city of Washington, D.C.

House painting in the White House

Washington used a variety of bright, bold colors in his wallpaper and paint choices throughout his home. According to the Mount Vernon website, these colors signified wealth. Two of the most vibrant examples of the home include the West Parlor, painted an expensive “Prussian blue” and the Small Dining Room, with an elaborately detailed plaster ceiling and a “verdigris-green paint”, added in 1785. Washington believed this outrageous green was “grateful to the eye”!

One of the most iconic rooms in the White House was restored under First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy in 1961.

According to the White House Historical association, The Oval Room on the Ground Floor boasts impressive wallpaper that was created by a French firm in 1834. The wallpaper was not originally made for the room; entitled “Views of North America”, the paper was widely used in American middle and upper-class homes. The wallpaper currently in the room was salvaged from a nearby home and installed in 1962. Today called the Diplomatic Reception Room, it offers as an impressive welcome to the White House for the many diplomatic meetings that take place there.

Another iconic White House room is the Red Room, whose name comes from the 1845 redecorating by the President and Mrs. Polk, exchanging the sunny yellow instituted by the Madisons for a deep crimson. This color scheme survived even President Theodore Roosevelt’s major 1902 renovations and currently maintains the “American Empire” style, furnished under First Lady Kennedy. The bold color choice in this room is reflected in the sumptuous furniture choices.

And finally, a lesser-known, but still-stylish room, the China Room displays the china used by the Presidents. First Lady Wilson began using the room in 1917 to host china, and the tradition continues to this day. Archived pages from the Clinton White House detail the history behind the red color scheme in the room; the 1924 portrait of First Lady Coolidge, where she wears a red dress, has determined the theme of the room. The shelving, painted in a deep red, offers a pleasing contrast with the white cabinets and predominantly light colors of the china displayed within.

Our time-honored profession has a time-honored place in American history!

360° Painting takes their role very seriously and that's why all our painters and crews are trained professionals with bonding and insurance. Premium Service Brands offers an initial training bootcamp and intense business coaching to ensure that all owners and operators are up-to-date with the latest technology, techniques, and safety standards of the profession.

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