While the outsized personality of U.S. President Donald Trump seemingly commands an entire news cycle unto himself, far less is known about his quieter wife. Here are six fun facts about the erstwhile model turned First Lady:
Melania Trump was born Melanija Knavs in Novo Mesto, Slovenia, making her just the second First Lady to be born overseas. Her predecessor, Louisa Adams, was born in 1775 – before the United States technically existed – to Catherine Nuth, an Englishwoman, and Joshua Johnson, the American consul in London. She also had an uncle who served in the Continental Congress. In other words, President Trump himself would have celebrated how Adams's family made America great . . .for the first time.
Hold Me Closer
The First Lady's first concert? Elton John, of course! She watched the Rocket Man bring down the house in Zagreb, Croatia, at age 16, commencing a lifelong love for his music that continued through his performance at the Trump wedding in 2005. Trump often played John classics like "Tiny Dancer" on the campaign trail, but alas, politics has a way of tearing apart the bonds of friendship, as Sir Elton announced there would be no dancing, tiny or otherwise, at the 2017 Presidential inauguration.
For Richer or Poorer . . . or Richer
As weddings are a prime time for the rich and famous to flaunt their fortunes, Mrs. Trump made sure to hold up her end of the deal. Her Christian Dior dress, which included a 13-foot train, a 16-foot veil and some 1,500 embroidered crystals, required a reported 550 hours to put together. At $100,000, it was said to be the most expensive wedding dress in history to that point, though its price has since been surpassed by the weddings of other hopeful First Ladies, like Kim Kardashian.
Freedom of Speech
We've all heard Melania talk in her accented English, but few are aware of the scope of her linguistic ability; along with her native Slovenian, she speaks French, Serbian and German (with some sources saying Italian, as well). She's begun passing her gift for languages on to her 11-year-old son, Barron, who heard his first French words at an early age and reportedly holds his own quite well in Slovenian. No such luck with the Donald, however, who steadfastly refuses to learn anything besides good ol' English.
As part of her finely honed sense of fashion, the First Lady has demonstrated a keen eye for accessories. Her Melania™ Timepieces & Jewelry line, developed from her own sketches, reportedly sold out on QVC within 45 minutes of its 2010 release. Sadly, her "caviar-based" anti-aging skin care proved far less popular with the masses.
While Mrs. Trump has always been a homebody, hers was a more public presence not long ago. You may have noticed her hovering over Times Square on a Camel cigarettes billboard in the 1990s, or caught her later appearances as guest host of The View. But her true claim to fame was a starring role in a 2005 Afflac commercial, in which a mad scientist transfers her brain into the head of the infamous duck. Undoubtedly anticipating the buzz the spot would generate, she was quoted in a statement with "Donald is known for saying ‘You’re fired’; maybe I will be known for saying ‘Aflac.'"