My First Ladies: Twenty-five Years as the White House Chief Floral Designer by Nancy Clarke, Matheson Contributor | | Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
My First Ladies: Twenty-Five Years as the White House Chief Floral Designer

My First Ladies: Twenty-Five Years as the White House Chief Floral Designer

4.6 3
by Nancy Clarke, Christie Matheson
     
 

View All Available Formats & Editions

In this book Nancy Clarke reveals the touching, funny, and illuminating story of what it was like to serve under six presidential administrations and to help each first lady find her own personal style when it came to planning flower designs, state dinners, and holiday festivities in the White House. You'll learn how Nancy gave comfort to Nancy Reagan when she

Overview

In this book Nancy Clarke reveals the touching, funny, and illuminating story of what it was like to serve under six presidential administrations and to help each first lady find her own personal style when it came to planning flower designs, state dinners, and holiday festivities in the White House. You'll learn how Nancy gave comfort to Nancy Reagan when she discovered she had cancer and how she helped Laura Bush to gain the confidence to select bright, bold flower arrangements over the more conservative palettes she had used in her first years as first lady. You'll see the deep bond that developed between Nancy Clarke and Barbara Bush and you'll feel what it was like to be standing in a bunker right next to President Bush in the days following 9/11. Only Nancy Clarke can reveal the inside story of what it was like to work for more than 30 years in the White House she called her second home.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this light-hearted memoir, retired White House Chief Floral Designer Clarke shares her memories of working for first ladies from Rosalynn Carter to Michelle Obama. For 25 years, Clarke worked with the presidential spouses and their staffs on a daily basis, creating floral arrangements for everything from the president's private quarters, to elaborate state dinners fit for a queen. Clarke writes in glowing terms about all the first ladies, but she also paints an intimate portrait of each. Her success as chief floral designer depended on her being a careful student of their idiosyncratic tastes and temperaments. Readers may also be interested in learning how national events, such as the 2000 election uncertainty, the Clinton impeachment, and the terrifying events of 9/11, were experienced by the behind-the-scenes White House staff. There are no shocking revelations in these pages, but Clarke's memories will entertain those who would like a glimpse inside America's most famous house. 29 color photographs.
(c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
ForeWord Reviews
Nancy Clarke reveals a treasured glimpse into the social life of the White House in My First Ladies. With help from Christine Matheson, she recounts thirty years of experience arranging flowers there. As chief floral designer, Clarke served under six first ladies: Michelle Obama, Laura Bush, Hillary Clinton, Barbara Bush, Nancy Reagan, and Rosalynn Carter. Nancy's stories of life in the White House are an interesting and rare look into domestic life in America's most prestigious household, and will satisfy readers' curiosity of what it's like to be a staff person, day in and day out.
Library Journal
Chief floral designer at the White House for 25 years, Clarke regales us with stories that place a special emphasis on the First Ladies she knew. Beginning as a floral volunteer during the Carter administration, Clarke worked her way up, getting to know the women of the White House, from Rosalynn Carter through Michelle Obama, along the way. Readers gain insight into the experience of working in the White House, the tremendous planning that goes into events, and Clarke's relationships with the First Families. Overall, her observations are compelling, though details about a First Lady's jewelry or the distance Clarke commutes to work seem like fluffy filler. This memoir is not a tell-all. Though people sometimes seem demanding, no one mentioned in anecdotes, whether a First Family member, another staffer, or a volunteer, ever appears in a negative light, as happens in Roland Mesnier's All the Presidents' Pastries or Connie Mariano's The White House Doctor. VERDICT This is an enjoyable peek behind the scenes for those who can't read enough about our First Families.—Bonnie Poquette, Milwaukee

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781416206392
Publisher:
Sellers Publishing, Inc.
Publication date:
10/01/2011
Pages:
191
Sales rank:
464,176
Product dimensions:
5.90(w) x 8.80(h) x 1.10(d)

Meet the Author

Christie Matheson is the author of Green Chic: Saving the Earth in Style and coauthor of Wine Mondays, The Confetti Cakes Cookbook, Confetti Cakes for Kids, Tea Party, and Vineyard Harvest.

A renowned floral designer, Nancy Clarke has created thousands of beautiful decorations and floral designs. For thirty years, her exquisite floral designs brought beauty, grace, and elegance to White House historical events.

Customer Reviews

Average Review:

Write a Review

and post it to your social network

     

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See all customer reviews >