Jackie Bouvier (Kennedy Onassis) was born 90 years ago today in Southampton. We will go through the houses she lived in as well as those of her ancestors in this post and look at the decor styles they liked. The Bouviers were allegedly an old noble family in France. In an article from the '60s by The New Yorker, we learned the family was of the house of Fontaine. However, we have not been able to find any pegidree chart going further back than her ancestor Jacques Bouvier in 18th century France, and the Bouvier name implies the occupational surname of a herder (of cattle, hence it sounds like "bovine"). There is very little information about the Bouviers of France available and it it believed by many that the aristocratic ties were embellished as a PR move on the Kennedy campaign. Eustache Bouvier, whose son came to America, did live in Grenoble the seat of the house of Fontaine so perhaps there is some truth behind the origin story. Whether noble or not, the Bouviers certainly gained noteriety upon the son, Michel's, immigration to America. The man, who began his career in the US in cabinet-making, would have been Jackie's great-great-grandfather and wound up in Society Hill, Philadelphia. He owned three brownstones and Curbed detailed the sale of these recently so we will provide some photos from their article.
The houses are similar and have beautiful architectural details inside and many marble fireplaces, as seen below.
Michel may have had success as a cabinet-maker but he made his fortune in real estate so it is no wonder he had such lovely properties. He was also one of the first members of the NYSE, and future generations of the family carried on working Wall Street. His son would have been Jackie's great-grandfather, the first of the three John Vernou Bouviers. We could not find the home of the first John Bouvier, but the second (grandfather) had a summer house in East Hampton called Lasata. This house has also been covered by Curbed so we can attach some pictures of the inside below.
The house looks like a mix of an Italian villa with typical Hamptons summer cottage style mixed in.
It was last owned by designer Reed Krakoff and his interior designer wife, Delphine so it is no wonder the interiors are so pretty. We do not know who currently owns the house, but more photos can be seen on Zillow. Jackie spent much time at this house growing up. John Bouvier Jr. was father to not only Jackie's father "Black Jack" but also "Big Edie" for any Grey Gardens fans out there. We will save Grey Gardens for another post and skip to Black Jack's houses which would have been where Jackie lived growing up. Jackie grew up in a Park Avenue apartment now owned by Jacob Safra of Safra Bank which was updated to be quite modern, however the following photos from My Lucious Life show it closer to how it would have looked.
The moldings and pediments stand out in this large living area. Judging by Jackie's style in her White House renovations, this photo could have been similar to how her parents would have decorated the apartment- keeping it very traditional. The dining room below has beautiful paneling and sconces.
Jackie famously went on to live with her stepfather, Hugh Auchincloss, a stockbroker and lawyer just like her real father Jack was. Their house was called Merrywood and was in Virginia, setting Jackie up to be near DC and meet the then Senator Kennedy. It appears this house is now owned by the Saudi Arabian Embassy. Again, Curbed has covered this house so we will include their photos of the Georgian style residence below.
We love that the moldings inside continue to evoke that Georgian style.
This house was decorated in somewhat of a transitional style at the time of this listing and looks amazing. Georgian style is so classic and can really meld well with other elements.
When Jackie married JFK, they rented a house in Georgetown. The house was built in the '40s and they rented it for a year like many young couples, including us, do. Ours is also a '40s home however I much prefer the Georgian look of theirs than the craftsman look of ours! Their first home purchase was Hickory Hill, which remained in the Kennedy family for many years, and was featured in Architectural Digest. The following pictures are from the feature except the exterior shot which was found on Pinterest.
The house is decorated in Kennedy family memorabilia.
Jackie famously suffered a miscarriage in the house and wanted to start over back in Georgetown in another Georgian looking town house, but they ultimately moved into another more Federal style Georgetown townhouse (below from Washingtonian).
This was the last house they lived in before The White House and Jackie's famous restorations began. The Kennedys also had vacation houses- one in Hyannis Port. This house was part of the famous Kennedy compound on Cape Cod essentially. This house was also covered by Architectural Digest and images are below.
The following are from House Beautiful's coverage of Jackie's White House decor updates.
Sister Parish was the first designer on the project and she had worked on the prior Georgetown house too. We covered the style in our blog post on Pride & Prejudice regency style. When JFK was assassinated, Jackie moved back to Georgetown into yet another Georgian house (below also from Washingtonian).
This was a true Georgian 18th century house and probably my favorite of the residences she lived in so I will include extra photos.
The house was the Newton D. Baker House, a national historic landmark house, as Baker was Secretary of War during WW1.
Jackie decided quickly to move back to New York to escape the public eye after the death of JFK and got an apartment on 5th Avenue. The building was neo-classical. The pictures below are from is Sotheby's sale. They definitely speak for themselves...
Other houses she purchased alone were in Martha's Vineyard and New Jersey. The New Jersey country house was perfect for hunting. Pictures of both are from Sotheby's.
Here is an exterior photo of the Martha's Vineyard house by Christie's:
When she became Jackie O, she lived in Aristotle Onassis' Paris apartment with him as well as his houses in Greece. They were fairly adept at keeping these properties private and I have not found many good pictures to share but I will update this if I can. Happy Birthday Jackie! You certainly inspired us with your home decor style as well as personal style.