Consider fashion. She wore Christian Dior and shopped at Neiman-Marcus, and Elizabeth Arden ordered up seven-point instructions for out-of-town hairdressers on how to produce the first lady's trademark bangs. She also started the practice of using antique furnishings from donors. An equally frugal move: She used old drapes to cover furniture and beds and once "secured parachute silk from a local Army base at 10 cents a yard and instructed the White House seamstress to fabricate curtains."
By Paul Bedard