Decorating the White House for Christmas

Themed holiday trees, glittery branches and lots of Bo — here's what goes into turning 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. into a spectacular White House Christmas.

  • The Christmas tree for the Blue Room arrives by horse-drawn carriage.

  • First Dog Bo was on hand to welcome the arrival of the Christmas tree for the Blue Room.

  • At the White House there are 37 Christmas trees to decorate, with more than 10,000 ornaments.

  • This year's theme, chosen by the First Lady, is \"Shine, Give, Share.\" Here, the tree in the China Room displays the theme.

  • The gingerbread cake is under construction in the Chocolate Shop, and a band saw is involved.

  • Creating the gingerbread house requires carpentry and baking skills.

  • The windows, fashioned in white chocolate, are attached to the house with melted white chocolate.

  • The gingerbread house takes shape. Here, the cutaways for the State Dining Room, Red Room, Green Room and East Room.

  • This year's gingerbread house weighs a whopping 400 pounds. A new feature this year: some of the windows are transparent, and you can see into the State Dining Room, Red Room, Green Room and East Room.

  • The gingerbread house is accompanied by a replica of the First Lady's Garden.

  • The eight large windows in the East Colonnade are usually decorated with enormous wreaths. This year, in honor of the First Lady's theme, artists used recycled paper to bring new holiday spirit to the space.

  • The trees in the East Room are decorated with gold leaves.

  • The Christmas tree in the Blue Room is dedicated to military families.

  • Each of the ornaments on the Blue Room tree is dedicated to a military family.

  • The \"cranberry tree\" on the table is the focal point of the Red Room. Covered with faux cranberries and pepper berries, the beautiful striped urn is filled with fresh roses, hydrangeas and peonies.

  • Smaller cranberry urns finish out the space.

  • To complement the \"cranberry tree,\" faux cranberry and pepper-berry wreaths adorn the Red Room.

  • Five First Dog replicas can be found throughout the White House. The Bo in the Red Room is made solely of buttons — 318, to be exact.

  • This Bo, in the Library, is made out of trash bags.

  • First Dog Bo mingles with the children of military families at a reception.

  • Could First Dog Bo be admiring the Green Room Christmas trees?

  • First Lady Michelle Obama decorates cookies with military children alongside White House chefs.

  • The faux Bo near the East entrance is made out of pom-poms.

  • The faux Bo in the Green Room is covered in black licorice and marshmallows.

  • The east visitors' entrance will be the starting point for holiday tours and receptions at the White House. More than 85,000 visitors will tour 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. this Christmas.

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