As not only the first female vice president but the first Black female vice president, Kamala Harris is blazing her own path in government. During every vice presidential term, that officeholder takes over the vice president’s residence in Washington, D.C., and redesigns it to fit their personal preferences.
As previously reported by theGrio, Harris tapped renowned interior designer and fellow Black woman Sheila Bridges to design her official residence. Recognized for her vibrant and intricately layered design perspective influenced by architectural and historical cues, Bridges combined the home’s traditional look with Harris’ modern aesthetic. Among the many changes made in the home, the library is one of the most notable.
“This room, for many years, had a very dark forest green and then a lime green striped wallpaper,” Harris told People magazine. “And I decided to change it up a bit. I think that this color, which is almost a fuchsia pink, is also a color of power and it’s also warm. And so, in some ways, I guess we’ve been challenging notions about what power looks like.”
The vice president also shared that the pink office is one of her favorite rooms in the home, especially for family bonding. While some may think the room’s color choice was inspired by Harris’ ties to Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc., Bridges explained that the pink was inspired by the property’s crepe myrtle tree blossoms.
“The trees are right outside the library and I wanted to bring that color inside,” Bridges told the Washington Post. “It’s important to have a dialogue between the landscape, architecture and interior.”
Despite that room’s vibrancy, the rest of the home’s walls follow a neutral color palette chosen to reflect Harris’ hometown, California, and modern aesthetic. Given that the residence is used to host events and world leaders, the two worked together to create a space that not only reflects the current vice president’s multicultural family but also the diversity of America.
“I wanted it to have a modern feel and lots of interesting details reflecting the vice president’s cultural heritage from India and Africa,” said the designer.
“I have been very purposeful about bringing a real variety of American art with a lot of young artists. So that we’re not only having art from the 1800s, but contemporary art [too],” Harris added. “It is important to make this house reflective of who we are as America,” she says, “and that we make it accessible to the variety of people that we are.”
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