POLITICS

White House Unveils Obama's State China

04/27/2015 12:11 pm ET | Updated Apr 27, 2015

The White House has unveiled the Obama state china service, which will be used at a state dinner for Japanese Prime Minister Shinzo Abe on Tuesday.

The china features a color called "Kailua Blue" inspired by the waters of Hawaii, according to the AP. The Chicago Sun-Times reports the settings were manufactured by Pickard China in Antioch, Ill.

The china service was unveiled to the public Monday, with several websites, including Design*Sponge, Architectural Digest and Apartment Therapy, getting a sneak peek last week.

The AP reports:

A fluted band of Kailua Blue, framed by a textured gold rim and a simple gold inner line, inner line, appears on all pieces of the service, except the dinner and serving plates, according to a description provided by the White House. The solid white dinner plates are edged in gold; the service plates have a wide gold rim and the presidential coat of arms at the center.

...

It consists of 11-piece place settings for 320 people and was being unveiled Monday at a preview for the Abe dinner.

The cost of the china service was not disclosed, but it was paid for from a private fund that is administered by the White House Historical Association. The state china service that then-first lady Laura Bush unveiled in January 2009 cost $493,000.

Planning for the Obama state china began in the fall of 2011 when Mrs. Obama and family friend and designer Michael Smith began gathering feedback from the White House residence staff, including the chefs.

Three years ago, in the spring of 2012, Pickard China, of Antioch, Illinois, was brought in to consult on the project. The company has made dinnerware for use at the Camp David presidential retreat in Maryland and aboard Air Force One.

To see more of the White House china collection, go here.

Below, photos of the Obama state china:

  • Danlly Domino/Architectural Digest
  • Danlly Domino/Architectural Digest
  • Danlly Domino/Architectural Digest

Christy Havranek contributed to this report.

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