On Monday, Melania Trump unveiled this year’s White House holiday decorations, and they are strikingly different than the “Time-Honored Traditions” theme we saw in 2017. According to reports, more than 20,000 feet of lights were strung and 12,000 bows were put up over the past few days with the help of 225 volunteers. But what’s perhaps most prominent is the bright red color palette used throughout.
The East Colonnade is lined with 40 towering crimson topiary trees and the color also appears on ornaments and wreaths in the Grand Foyer and Cross Hall. “The choice of red is an extension of the pales, or stripes found in the presidential seal designed by our Founding Fathers. It is a symbol of valor and bravery,” the First Lady said in a statement. However, it’s not the traditional setup and has come under scrutiny on social media. The Internet is chock-full of memes comparing the decorations to the likes of The Shining and The Handmaid’s Tale.
This year’s official theme is “American Treasures,” and the rest of the décor centers more around this idea. The Green Room celebrates the country’s harvest, with tablescapes of fruits and vegetables, while the East Room highlights the skylines of cities like New York, St. Louis, Chicago, and San Francisco. In the Red Room, the First Lady chose to focus on her Be Best campaign, which encourages “positive social, emotional, and physical habits,” with pencil wreaths and painted ornaments.
Other decorations include gingerbread replicas of the Capitol, the Lincoln Memorial, the Jefferson Memorial, Washington Monument, and the White House, which are on display in the State Dining Room. And the official White House Christmas Tree — an 18-feet-tall Fraser Fir from North Carolina — is displayed in the Blue Room. It’s decorated with blue velvet ribbon embroidered in gold with each state and territory’s name.
“This is a joyous time of year when we decorate the White House for the Christmas Season,” Mrs. Trump said. “Our theme honors the heart and spirit of the American people. Thank you to the many volunteers and staff who worked hard to decorate the halls of the People’s House in Christmas cheer. On behalf of my family, we wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.”
See more of the White House Christmas decorations below.