Everyone who reads Cote de Texas knows how much I adore the magazine that is based out of Houston.  MILIEU is one of the most beautiful and thoughtful design & garden magazines, providing endless inspiring material for all design aficionados.  MILIEU is the brainchild of Pamela Pierce and she continues to impress as Editor in Chief, traveling the globe to bring back the material that fills its pages.

And so awhile ago, I was both excited and humbled to get a phone call from Pam who excitedly wanted to share news of MILIEU’s newest endeavor.   Next April, MILIEU will be hosting a design showhouse - in Houston!    Knowing Pam’s aesthetic, I knew immediately it would be a visual feast.  And as she shared the details, I got even more convinced.

Pam said the designers would hail from Texas, the United States, Canada and Europe.  There would be a specific color palette that would guide the individual designs.  With all the designers using this palette, the showhouse would have a cohesive look that would make visual sense.  The plan is that someone will be able to move into the house, bringing just a toothbrush.

The showhouse itself is being built in River Oaks, one of Houston’s most beautiful and historic neighborhoods.   Its design was inspired by the legendary architect Edwin Lutyens.

The rendering of the MILIEU Design Showhouse 2020,  inspired by Edwin Lutyens.

The Lutyens influence is most evident when you study his famous 1899 Deanery Garden home, located in Berkshire, England:

Can you see the influence when looking at Lutyens’ Deanery Garden?  Today this home is owned by Led Zeppelin’s guitarist Jimmy Page!

The showhouse is being constructed by Jennifer Hamelet of Mirador Builders.  Hamelet has been quietly improving Houston’s neighborhoods with her distinctive houses.  They are charming and inviting, a description that fits even her more modern designs.

Here are two of Mirador houses that I find especially beautiful:

This Spanish Colonial’s charm starts at the stucco and iron wall that surrounds the property.  A brick path beckons visitors up to the front door.

The backyard kitchen evokes Spain with its brick terrace and aqua doors.  An outdoor lighted stair winds up to the second floor.


This French Provencal design by Hamelet is my favorite.  Excuse me, but this is Houston?!??   I adore the gravel drive which is something found in the south of France, not Houston.  Just fabulous!


Hamelet’s interiors are as inspiring as her exteriors.  Just beautiful!

It’s no wonder that Pam chose Mirador Builders to construct the showhouse.   Her choices for the interior designers are just as fabulous.

Ready to see the list?

First on the list of interiors designers are Houstonians Carol Glasser and her partner Becky Cooper.  OK – I confess I did a somersault when I saw this pair on the list!!!  Alright, alright – maybe I just jumped up and down.  I can not wait to see what these two design for the showhouse !

Another Houstonian is the uber talented Eleanor Cummings.

From England and California is interior and fabric designer Kathryn Ireland!!!!!!  I TOLD you this was a great list of designers!!!

And, drumroll please, from Washington D.C., the one and only Darryl Carter!!!!!!!

Wait, there’s more.

Fabric designer and author of my favorite design book published this year – the incredible Lisa Fine!!

A former Texan, now from NYC, Jennifer Vaughn Miller is returning home to design a room for the showhouse.

From Dallas, fabulous interior designer and Editor-at-Large at MILIEU is Shannon Bowers.

All the way from Canada, comes Colette Van Den Thillart.

From England, one of the world’s most well known designers, Mr. Nicky Haslam!!!  Seriously?!?!?!  Nicky Haslam!!! 


And finally, from Houston, coming out of her self imposed interior design retirement is Pamela Pierce – one of my idols.  I don’t think there are many people alive with better taste than Pam.

With an ensemble of designers like this, the MILIEU Designer Showhouse 2020 promises to be one for the record books.  It’s a true testament to MILIEU’s reputation and to the respect and admiration that Pam has earned from the design community that so many wonderful talents will be contributors.


There will be a preview party at the showhouse on Thursday, April 23, 2020 hosted by Clayton Dabney for Kids with Cancer.

The showhouse will be open both Saturday and Sunday on two weekends:  April 24-25 and May 2-3,  10am – 4pm.  Proceeds will benefit Clayton Dabney for Kids with Cancer HERE.

And, as a treat to you, this is the beautiful cover of MILIEU’s upcoming winter issue where you can find more information about the showhouse inside!  Gorgeous Swedish furniture mixed with a simple striped fabric – a subtle vignette that makes me even more excited to see the showhouse!

If you don’t subscribe to the actual print version of MILIEU, you should.  The digital version just does not compare to actually holding the printed magazine in your hands. When planning the design of the magazine, Pam was concerned with details that would make it both a pleasing visual and physical experience.  I remember her describing the not yet published magazine to me:   The paper would be heavy and thick.   The photos will be large, often spilling across to two pages.  The commentary would be sparse and wouldn’t block out the beautiful images.

And here, six years later, these details, along with the interesting and inspiring content, continue to make MILIEU one of the most beautiful design & garden magazines.

And while I am here extolling the virtues of the print version, I must confess to you that I actually subscribe to the digital MILIEU!

To subscribe to either version, go HERE.

See you at the MILIEU Design Showhouse 2020!!


  1. As I won't be able to attend the showcase home, I look forward to seeing pictures!

  2. Wow - I just might have to fly over from Atlanta to see it!

  3. IT is by far my favorite magazine!! This is a "Big Designer Star" list even be Texas standards!! franki

  4. oh mmmmm geeeeeeeeeeeee! I want to buy the house NOW. Are those ALL of the designers? Renee? Ginger? How exciting. Do a vlog post and give us sneek peeks of the during...I'll send you a camera crew!

  5. What a lineup (most of whom I recognize thanks to you)! Bravo to Milieu. I have to agree on print vs. electronic--print can deliver images in a way that a screen can't, even with zooming. Also, you get a better idea of the cohesive whole.

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  7. Wow! They brought in the A-team!! Wish Ginger Barber was included. Can't wait to see!

  8. A showhouse with some of my all time favorite designers! Steve and I are definitely going to visit, and it's for such a wonderful cause.
    Thank you, Joni :)


  9. I CANNOT wait! I subscribe to the print edition

  10. What an impressive lineup! Without a doubt, some of my absolute favourite designers. As a Canadian, when you said a designer from Canada was included, I found myself thinking "I'll bet it's Colette Van Den Thillart." I am beyond excited!

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  13. So the designers will be from Texas and the United States...Ha! That's funny!

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  16. Very excited to hear this news. I am driving from Tennessee to attend. Just wish it was open to the public more than two weekends.

  17. I am excited to see that Darryl Carter is one of the featured designers. I love his work, and have a soft spot for him because I’m from the DMV. Another great designer from that area is Patrick Sutton (from Baltimore). I don’t know if you’ve ever featured his designs. If not, he’s worth a ‘look see.’ Anyway, I can’t wait to see your coverage of the showcase house. Thanks again for another fabulous post.

  18. This is so exciting Joni!! What a fabulous crew of designers!

  19. They really should have you cover the Showhome for your blog!
    You have been so supportive of these designers and decorators over the years!
    P.S. BTW - Tara Shaw has a book coming out in the new year!

    Cheers! Jan at rosemary cottage

  20. I love Pam Pierce too!! This is going to be so beautiful!

  21. OMG this will be fabulous and worth driving to Houston to see! Exciting!

  22. this is best artical You have been so supportive of these designers and decorators over the years! (

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