New Bush China Cost $550,000

First Lady Laura Bush unveiled the new set of $500,000 china she commissioned for the White House—an expensive bet, considering she and her hubby move out in two weeks. What if the Obamas hate it?

AP, via ABC News: The $493,000 set was inspired by a few pieces of green basketweave-patterned French china in the White House collection believed to have come from James and Dolley Madison. It was paid for by a privately funded trust of the White House Historical Association, which also purchased a second, less formal set.

Laura Bush said the china has been in the works for several years and the family had hoped to be able to use it, but the process took longer than expected.

…Laura Bush said she commissioned the dinnerware because of breakage and a need for more settings for larger events, and added a second Magnolia-patterned set for $74,000 for use at private family dinners and smaller events.

But not to fear: You didn’t buy the plates. The china is being paid for by a private foundation. The White House Historical Association was created for the exact purpose of footing the bill on the expensive dinnerware.

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