An article in the June issue of Southern Living literally stopped me in my tracks.  And y’all.  I have to say this – that rarely happens anymore.  I just don’t often see a house in a design magazine or on a real estate site that makes me gasp or smile or makes me even just a little jealous. 

These days, it’s the odd houses that do that.  The old ones.  The renovated ones.  The charming ones.  The rare ones.  There has to be something truly unique about a house for me to say, “Yes.  I’ll read this article.”   Sometimes I wonder if the editors don’t feel the same way.

  Anyway, I experienced that WOW feeling with a house in the June Southern Living (which is turning out to be a favorite magazine again! Who knew?)  You probably already saw the house that I loved in Southern Living, but – I’m going to make it worth your while to give it a second view today. 

But, before we look at that house and dissect it and compare it to all the newly discovered BEFORE photos – let’s talk about WHERE the house is located.

Pass Christian, Mississippi!

You know Pass Christian, don’t you?

A beautiful Pass Christian, Mississippi house before it was destroyed in Hurricane Katrina.

Years ago, Ben, Elisabeth and I drove our brand new car! to Seaside, Florida for a few weeks vacation.   It was my idea, I wanted to see all the charming beach houses there.

                   At our little clapboard rental in Seaside!!                   

At the time Seaside was famous for being one of the original New Urbanism towns and I was desperate to see it in person.  Rosemary Beach was so new there were only a few homes built when we were there.  Today, it’s all built up.  

We drove out from Houston and stayed a night in New Orleans so that I could antique, visiting all the fabulous stores on Magazine Street – pretending I could afford anything there! 

The next day we headed back out towards the Panhandle of Florida, but I had just one more request of Ben – let’s drive through Pass Christian!!!

Please! !!!!

Live Oaks and a Southern mansion in Pass Christian

I had spent years reading about the charming town of Pass Christian in  Southern Living magazine.  The sleepy town was filled with antebellum mansions that overlooked the Gulf of Mexico – their front yards were shaded from centuries old Live Oaks.

Ben wasn’t thrilled to stop yet again, but he pulled the car off I-10 and drove onto Highway 90.  Just as we came upon the sleepy town, the skies opened and a torrential downpour made it impossible to see within an inch out the window.  Ben was furious with me as if it was my fault it had rained, but I was more than upset.  My one chance to see this charming town up close had been ruined.  Truth be told, I never did, unfortunately, make it back there.

Pass Christian is 50 miles east of New Orleans.  In between is Bay St. Louis where designer/blogger @visualvamp just moved to.

Unfortunately, two horrendous hurricanes nearly destroyed Pass Christian, Camille in 1969 and in 2005, Katrina damaged or demolished all but 500 of its 6000 homes.  Amazing that the town was able to rebuild,  which it has.


Pass Christian has a rich history.  Indians were the first to live there, of course, and next came the Spanish in the 16th century.   The French Canadians settled there in the late 17th century.

One piece of history about Pass Christian seems most interesting reading it today:

The entire peninsula was owned by one Julia de la Brosse, the Widow Asmar.  The widow operated a cattle and dairy farm on her land, which she had owned since the 1740s.  Her slaves operated her plantation, along with a few overseers.  When she died in 1799, she left downtown Pass Christian to her former slave, Charles Asmar – a free person of color.  He and his wife Madelon in turn left the land to their nine heirs when Charles died in 1835.  The Charles Asmar property was approximately 680 acres, today it covers most of Pass Christian’s commercial district.

It made me wonder – did this ever happen again?  A former “master” leaving such a large amount of valuable land to a former slave.  Was it because the master was a woman instead of a man?

Today, descendants of Charles "Charlot" Asmar have these last names:  Charlot, Ausmer and Azemar.

Pass Christian was comprised of mostly wealthy people visiting from New Orleans and the poor who worked for them.  Fine houses were erected along the beach by those from Louisiana.  Mississippi plantation owners built the fancy Antebellum mansions hoping to outdo their neighbors.

Before the Civil War, tremendous growth happened in Pass Christian.  Sixty houses on the beachfront were built during 1849 and 1850 alone!   Grape orchards were planted in order to make wine.   In 1849, the first yacht club of the south (and the second in the United States) was established in Pass Christian, before it was later moved to New Orleans in 1857. 

By 1860, Pass Christian was considered the Queen City of Mississippi’s Gulf Coast.

In 1868, Pass Christian became an official town.


The large Pass Christian hotel was built to house all the visitors to popular beach town.   Opening in 1831, it was the first hotel on the Mississippi Gulf Coast – and it stayed open just for the season.   Later, it would remain open all year long.   The hotel was the center of social life in the town.

In 1848, a ball was given at the hotel in honor of the Mexican War hero General Zachary Taylor.  The next day, thousands attended a BBQ at the hotel.  Two months later  – Taylor was elected President of the USA.

The next year, the hotel was the scene of the first racing regatta on the coast.   This Yacht Club is the second oldest in the country although the yachting club was later moved to New Orleans.

     The Pass Christian Hotel closed for the Yellow Fever !QUARATINE! and again, in 1861 with the onset of the Civil War.  Its final end came in 1877 when it burned to the ground.


Another notable hotel in the Pass was the Mexican Gulf Hotel.   The hotel was overbudget when it was built in 1883 and it never recouped its losses through owner after owner after owner.  The basic design was flawed, there were only four suites with views of the water!   There were a few major renovations, the last one was finished a year before the entire hotel burned down in 1917.

   A view of the hotel after one of its remodels.

              This renovation showed a new White House Portico façade on the hotel.  It looks nothing as it once did, but you can still make out the same four front guest rooms that plagued the hotel.

Pass Christian & Oysters.  Pass Christian was known for its prolific oyster beds.   In fact, when the Canadian French first discovered the Pass in 1699, they named it Passe Aux Huitres – Oyster Pass. 

he first French colony in Old Biloxi in 1699. French-Canadian explorers named the nearby channel Passe aux Huitres, or Oyster Pass, because of its plentiful oysters. Pass Christian has produced some of the best oysters in the whe first French colony in Old Biloxi in 1699. French-Canadian explorers named the nearby channel Passe aux Huitres, or Oyster Pass, because of its plentiful oysters. Pass Christian has produced some of the best oysters in the whe first French colony in Old Biloxi in 1699. French-Canadian explorers named the nearby channel Passe aux Huitres, or Oyster Pass, because of its plentiful oysters. Pass Christian has produced some of the best oysters in the wr the first French colony in Old Biloxi in 1699. French-Canadian explorers named the nearby channel Passe aux Huitres, or Oyster Pass, because of its plentiful oysters. Pass Christian has produced some of the best oysters in the wo

But behind all the romantic stories about Pass Christian and its successful oyster business, there is heartbreak and tragedy. Here is a series of photographs that give a glimpse into the child labor that permeated the United States and continues throughout the world.   A photographer was hired to document the child labor there but the superintendent of the Pass Packing Co. refused to let him photograph inside the building.  Instead he caught the children as they left to go home.  Notice the babies.  Mostly likely these were their little brothers and sisters whom they were responsible for throughout the day.

The work day was from 4:00 am until 5:00 pm.

Shown here, is a 7 year old girl returning home at 5pm.   Those are probably her two brothers who also worked as oyster shuckers. Shucking is not a glamourous job and I’m sure their hands were scarred by numerous knife injuries.  Sad to think that child labor like this still occurs today.

Why show all these photos when one might prove the point?  Their little faces haunted me and I can’t imagine how tragic their lives were.  Don’t you think they deserve to be remembered?

Here is Lena Krueger, 7 years old (in the middle) who had shucked 6 pots that day; Annie Kadeska, 9 years old on the right, had shucked 10 pots; and Rosie Zinsoska on the left (she did not know her age) had shucked 6 pots.

Little Teeny, one of the smallest oyster shuckers at Pass Christian.  Like some of the others, she also did not know her age.

In 1956, shucking machines took over for hand shucking.

Besides its oysters, Pass Christian is known for its old Live Oaks, many of which were unfortunately destroyed during the hurricanes.


The Live Oaks line the streets along the beach.    These trees are so old, they are truly amazing!

The scenic beach route retains its southern feel with Live Oaks,  pink roses and white pickets!  Darling!

But no Like Oak on Pass Christian could compete with Mammoth!   It was considered the largest and oldest oak in the south. 

Notice the surrey with the fringe on top!!

The Mammoth tree died of natural causes, old age, in the 1950`s.

More about Mammoth, further down.

Nothing has altered Pass Christian’s course more than nature. The small town barely survived two horrific hurricanes - Camille in 1969 and Katrina in 2005.   Camille was a killer storm – in a famous incident a group of partiers rode out the storm in a motel, only to all perish in the surge.  In the years following Camille, the town worked hard to recover, which it did.  The population doubled to 6000 by 2000.  But then Katrina happened.  More than 90 percent of the houses were either damaged or destroyed.  The devastation was unimaginable.  After touring the damage, then Governor Haley Barbour called it “sickening.”

Today, the population of Pass Christian is back to where it was before Katrina.  There are still empty lots, but new homes are being built.

After Katrina:  The bridge between Bay St. Louis and Pass Christian.   Something about this photo shows truth to the destruction more than empty lots and twisted trees.   Look at those huge pieces of concrete lifted off their piers.   The force of a hurricane is unimaginable.

Before, during and after – the visual story of one house.


And restored!

Let’s look at the some of the notable houses in Pass Christian:

President Zachary Taylor wasn’t the only president to stay in Pass Christian.  A plaque was erected where President Woodrow Wilson and his family visited in 1913.


   The house was called Beaulieu but became known as the Dixie White House.  The once owner was a famous cavalryman of the Mexican War and the Indian Wars who in 1880 invited President U.S. Grant to visit his home.  Later in 1913, yet another owner hosted Woodrow and his family, who spent two weeks at the house so that he could play golf every day.  He probably is the president who has spent the most time at the game!  Woodrow was suffering from the flu when he arrived and wanted only peace and quiet and golf.   He celebrated his 56th birthday at Pass Christian.

The house was considered a beauty on Scenic Drive. It was set on massive arch columns in the old Spanish architectural style.  Each of the six bedrooms had a fireplace, high ceilings and wide windows.  The many fireplaces resulted in a riot of chimneys on the roof.   One bathroom had a marble tub from Italy which weighed several tons.   The dinner table was set each night for 25 people!!!  Pass Christian was never a real beach town, it was an elegant Southern town designed for socializing. 

The town gathered for a glimpse of the Woodrow's at a garden party in their honor. 

US President Teddy Roosevelt also came to visit Pass Christian.  He was the guest of John M. Parker in 1915.  Later, Teddy nominated Parker as his running mate when he ran for the Bull Moose party for President!!

Beaulieu was built in 1854, but in its final days it became neglected.  It was heavily damaged during Hurricane Camille but was later rebuilt.  Katrina demolished it completely.   A replica now stands in its place.  The house is so hidden behind the Live Oaks it is hard to see from the street, but the characteristic stairs and arches remain.

And here is another famous house on the Pass no longer standing:

This house was where the writer and personality Dorothy Dix spent the season at Pass Christian.  Such a charming house with its scalloped trim and cross X railings.

And the back side of the house which is even more romantic with its addition.  And as usual, all the Live Oaks shading the house from the hot summers.

Another famous woman from Pass Christian is Robyn Rogers who grew up there.  Here she returns after Katrina to look at all the work that had been accomplished. 

And more beautiful houses on the Pass, some which survived the hurricanes and some which did not:

This is the Parham-Katz house, 1909,  located at 800 Scenic Drive West.  It was destroyed by Hurricane Katrina and never rebuilt.

The Breaux-Clay House:

The Breaux-Clay house was built in 1895.   It was heavily damaged by Katrina – but it was rebuilt!

Here, the remains of the house.

And today!

Inside – the house is absolutely gorgeous.  What an entry!  I would love to decorate this house!!!

The living room.You will see that these houses – although they are built right across from the beach – are not beach houses.

Instead, most are elegant homes that might be found in the most tony of neighborhoods, certainly not right across from a beach.

Gorgeous winding stairs.  The jib door opens to a powder room.

The back of the house – with its huge Live Oak tree.  Those trees!!!!  Amazing!!!

Not all fences on Scenic Drive are white pickets.  Many are black iron – covered in roses.

The Legier-Frye House:

Built in 1910 – the house had a distinctive front porch.

After Hurricane Katrina, the house was damaged and then restored:

Today – the newly restored Legier-Frye house.    


Legier-Frye - Here is the new front porch, meant to be a replica of the original porch.

The view from inside the house out towards the beach.

The front entry with the piano where hired pianists entertain during parties and events.

 And the dining room, overlooking the beachfront.   Again, you can see this is an elegant house more at home in a neighborhood like River Oaks or Highland Park in Texas.  Here, on the beach, the houses are fancy and are more mansions than beach houses. 

The Legendre House:

This house at 709 E Scenic Drive, The Legendre House, was built in 1840.  Amazing that it still stands after two devastating hurricanes.  This was the first home to have lights in Pass Christian and one of the first to have an artesian well.

It is fascinating to realize this house was built 21 years before the Civil War!  The wood floors and marble fireplace are believed to be original, having been placed in the house more than 175 years ago.


The beautiful view of the beach.

The foyer.  I think would decorate this as sort of a library with short bookcases filled with antique books on both sides and a long, large antique library table in the middle of the room with rugs up and down the room.

The living room.  Yes.  I would love to decorate this house!  Wouldn’t you????

This could be a combo study/dining room or sitting room/dining.  The rooms are so big.   You could put a banquette in the window with a skirted table and a few chairs and use it as a second dining area.

And another:

This house on the beach is a new build. The guest house is actually the original residence which was built in 1840 and is on the Historic Registry.   There is a third original house on the property.


Another “beach” house that is more dressy and elegant than most beach houses seen in the south.

The enclosed porch is wonderful!!  Love the rattan furniture.

The back of the house with the long den built to appear as if it was added on, as if it was once an open air porch.

The master with its sitting room through the glass doors. 

I love the bathroom with the marble counters, wood furniture and rug.

In the back yard are the two original houses from the 19th century.  The white house was built in 1840.  The other yellow house is also original and it, too was renovated.

The white house, from 1840!  Love those chairs and the dough table.  Speaking of dough tables, I really miss mine!  My sister-in-law is giving it a place to call home until we move to a bigger place. Maybe.

The tiny yellow house is redone in darling striped sofas and vintage curtains.

See all of these three houses HERE

The Bailey House:

The Bailey Home was built in 1850.   This is just such a beautiful home with its lush shade trees that frame the white house.

Its distinctive crab claw stairs were added in 1938 along with a second story.   It’s hard to  imagine the house with these stairs!


The view from the front balcony.

This house was owned by Audry & Sherwood Bailey, Sr, who with the Bailey brothers founded and owned the Bailey Lumber & Supply.  Originally the Baileys were building on another lot when Este Lauder super model Karen Graham convinced her friends to move next door to her on Scenic Drive.  The Baileys added a guest house to live in while they remodeled the main house.  They hired Jim Westerfield of Westerfield Antiques and Interiors to decorate the house which they filled with Georgian furniture, antique rugs, Oriental porcelains and accessories.  

Last year, the New Orleans Auction Galleries had a sale featuring the late Houston socialite Pat Breen and the Baileys.  The house was also put up for sale – the photos give a glimpse into how those on Scenic Drive lived and decorated in the later years of the 20th century.

Such a pretty foyer!!

If I was decorating this, new blue and white wallpaper with flags.

This reflects how the Pass southerners lived in the 19th and 20th century, with grace and elegance.


I love the dining room  !

I wonder how the new owners decorated this house.

I know what I would do – I would leave the wallpaper but use whiter paint (everywhere), use blue and white check on the chairs, use upholstered host chairs, get a huge mirror above the console and a Swedish or Russian antique crystal chandelier, new straight panels with textured shades, no shutters, and add a patterned textured rug. 

Beautiful landing.

View of the beach.

Well, this rug kills the master.  It looks too big and too empty.  Needs more furniture and wallpaper and a textured rug with several layered over it.  And a canopy.

Love these beds and the luggage racks, a must for guest rooms!

An Original Creole Cottage Enlarged:

This original Creole cottage was built in the 1840s.  Today it is over 3500 sq ft and includes a guest cottage with a pool.  Love the pattern on the porch railing and the light green shutters.

In 2013 the house looked like this:

2013:  The major difference is that the shutters are painted black instead of the more trendy and prettier aqua.

What a difference this one detail makes!


Today:  White picket fence, an American flag and the beach.  The only thing missing is a Beach Boys record playing on loud speakers off the front porch!!

2013:  Just a bit of tidying up made the front lawn look so much better today.

Lawn Appeal.  You shouldn’t neglect this when remodeling.  Don’t leave the front lawn for last.

Today:  This century old cottage is not nearly as fancy as some we have previously seen.

Today:  The rooms are large –this overlooks the back porch.   The furniture looks a bit sparse.


2013:  I like the scale of the furniture better here.   It fills out the room. 

Don’t let a large room overwhelm you.  Just think more furniture in different seating arrangements etc.  An empty room feels cold and uninviting.

Today:  The charming back porch overlooks the new courtyard and the cottage,  which is a former school house.

The new owners put in trim around the screens and a new door with an X motif all of which dresses it up a bit.  


2013:  Before the new trim and screened door was put in place. 

Notice the back yard – bare.  This will be totally renovated.

Today:  A new fireplace was built between the old school house and the main house.  The large patio was landscaped with plants and trees and umbrellas.


Today:  The drone view of the new courtyard with the outside shower.  The pool is around the corner.

Before:  2013  Same view before the courtyard and fireplace were installed.  What a difference!!!

Today:  Isn’t this the cutest thing ever?!?!?!   I love the railings that mimic the main house.  Darling!!!   And again, the aqua shutters make all the difference.

Inside the old school house.

Today:  White paint and a good clean up spruces up the bathroom.

2013:  How it looks before.  How many kids actually fit in this schoolhouse?!?!

And, here is another house, newish:

This newer home is beachfront in the historic district.  Lots of Gaines’ Shiplap!!  Concrete floors.

New with old world Pass Christian charm.

The porch has front row view of the Sister Oaks.  The realty brochure proudly mentions the “Sister Oaks” so I googled them and googled over and over and nope!  Nothing on these famous Sister Oaks!

                                                                                                                                                                           Maybe these are the Sister Oaks at the end of the front yard on the Drive? They do look like they come in pairs.

This house seems more beachy than the others – finally!!!

An antique island counter mixes with the industrial kitchen and concrete floors.

The large porch was enclosed to make a nice sized dining area.  Love!

The bedroom is a mix of rustic and industrial. 

Want to visit Pass Christian?  There a few charming boutique hotels in town and a large amount of Airbnbs in Pass Christian and nearby Bay St. Louis  HERE. 

First, the new boutique hotels:

There are only a few hotels in town, such as this one downtown, Hotel Whiskey which includes a fine restaurant.

The Pass Christian marina is bustling again.

Another new boutique hotel located across from the marina is the Hotel Pass Christian.  HERE

This particular house HERE is huge and is perfect for large family reunions.  It’s not on the beach but there are many beachfront on Air BnB.

The main living area of this house is on the second story, safe from rising tides.


The double living room faces the front yard.  The décor is more casual than some of the other Pass Christian beach houses we’ve seen today.

                                                                                                                        Off the open kitchen is the breakfast room with its long benches.  This house is very casual but it is not typical beach-y.  Of course not!  This is Pass Christian!

And so we come to the cottage in Southern Living magazine. 

I was just hooked from the first photo – of the front of the “Pink Cottage.”   How absolutely charming, how southern, how cute!

Located in the historic district of Pass Christian, the restored cottage is located on a lane that ends at the beach.  It is a National Trust cottage with 1250+ sq. feet in the main house and an additional 430 sq.ft in the guest house. 

The beach cottage survived both major hurricanes to hit Pass Christian – Camille and Katrina.

What really attracted me was inside, the house was made of Mississippi cypress and pine which was left as it always had been since the 1900s.  Others might be tempted to paint the interior wood, but it’s what makes it so attractive.

The owners, from Houston, Texas bought the house so they could spend summers and holidays there.  The cottage had already been renovated and landscaped, so they turned their energies to the décor.  Their daughter’s friend, Grace Kaynor, is a designer from New Orleans who owns Sotre on Magazine Street.    Grace furnished the cottage in the exact style the owners wanted – with a refined comfort.  As we have seen, beach rustic is not found often in Pass Christian.  Instead it is “casual elegance” as Grace says:  “After spending all day out in the sun, people are still entertaining with their china and silver.”  You won’t find many red solo cups filled with beer here.  

Photos by Dane Tashima.

As the Southern Living story begins with this photograph of the Little Pink House sitting behind a white picket fence, you think – “seriously, could it be any cuter?”  Notice the brick walk and the screen doors!   Don’t miss the fence posts with the bird houses atop them.   The house is named Kiskadee after a native Texas yellow and black flycatcher.   Since the owners live in Texas and they kept the house’s name.


BEFORE:   2015 – This is how the house looked when the current owners bought it.  There are no shutters yet.   The landscape has not yet grown in.  Notice the birdhouses are still here. 

Built in 1930, the cottage is one the better preserved  houses on its lane which is filled with other cottages. Kiskadee once housed the town’s telephone switchboard!!!  It is noted for its 6 over 6  windows and double front doors.


And earlier in the 2000s, the house is shown before the charming picket fence was installed and the new lantern was put in.   It looks like the house is still the same cute pink color.

BEFORE:   From the 2015 sale,  an overhead photo shows the house with the front parking space, the second gate leads to the back guest house.  It’s like a mini compound!!!  Down the lane at the left is the ocean.

                                                                                                            The house is noted for being on a street right off the main Scenic Drive and 2nd Avenue.   This intersection between the street and 2nd Avenue was once known as Hog Alley.  But why such an illustrious name?

The Mammoth Oak was located at the corner of the 2nd Ave and this street nicknamed Hog Alley.  Hog Alley?  Its name came from all hogs who lived around the area stealing the acorns that fell to the ground from Mammoth Oak.


FROM SOUTHERN LIVING:   The gate leads to the koi pond garden and the guest house.

                                                                                                           Most deserving!    

SOUTHERN LIVING:  View of the “secret gardens” between the main cottage and the guest house.

FROM REAL ESTATE BROCHURE 2015.   The brochure shows much more of the luscious secret gardens between the two cottages.  The brick path meanders from one side of the cottage to the back of the cottage and up to the other side of the cottage.

Notice how the façade of the guest house mimics the main cottage.  Instead of two front doors, there is just one – but the doors and the windows and front porch remain.

Real Estate Brochure 2015:  At the rear of the property between the guest house and shed is the koi pond.

And today, from Southern Living, another view of the koi pond from the opposite direction.  A new pergola was added to the side of the guest house, in front of the koi pond.  The fountain must sound wonderful back there!  More plants were added to create even more lusciousness.

Real Estate Brochure:  Shows the back of the main house.  At the front side is the addition of the screened porch.   A pergola sits in the back right garden.

2015:  The screened in porch on the side of the house. 

Real Estate Brochure:   The screened in porch without styling.

Today:    The side porch styled.  Wicker sectional and rattan rocking chair.   The console is from Noir Furniture, available at .

The owners call the Pink Cottage – peach, saying it reminds them of the inside of a seashell they might find on the beach.  The blue is gray.

Hmmm.    In the photos – the house looks peachy-pink and sky-blue, not gray at all.  I’m not sure what the true colors are.

The peeling paint shell console is styled for dinners or as a bar, as needed.  Love the mixture of antiques here!!

Here the walls look like a taffy pink. 

I just LOVE this house!!!!!!

At the opposite side of the screened porch is a dining table and rattan chairs – all available from the designer’s store:   @Sotre

Southern Living:    The brick stairs lead up to the front porch with its two double doors with their shutters. Just like on the screened in porch, the ceiling and floorboards are painted a vivid sky blue or gray.

Let’s go inside!!!!!!

Southern Living:    The entry was turned into the dining room.   The designer says that the owners wanted to keep the original paneled walls since they were one of the things that made them fall in love with the cottage.  The designer says to keep the walls dark, she decided to use white furniture to lighten up the décor.

Love the Swedish clock and the striped rug, along with the Kubu chairs.

The designer had her cabinet maker make the white table – a copy of an antique.  The chandelier is an antique found in Woodbury Ct.   The chairs are from Sika Designs through her store Sotre.


2015:  The entry as it once was, now it is the dining room.   Notice how right the designer was to lighten the furniture and bring in white pieces.  Here before the furniture was the same color of the paneling and it just blended into the walls!   Beautiful fireplace – too bad we don’t see that in Southern Accents. 

2015:   Past the foyer is the living room with the kitchen where the open door is.  At the left is the bathroom.

Again, boring brown leather furniture blends into the walls.  The fireplace is another beauty!

2015:  Another view of the living room with the fireplace showing. 


Today!  Hard to believe this is the same room!!!  OMG.  I love this!   French design at the beach!!!  LOVE the rug, of course, shades of Something’s Gotta Give.

Love the French chairs with the chintz and check patterns.  Just beautiful.  Love the lamps which comes from these designer’s shop as does the club chair.  The white coffee table is a also available from Sotre.    I love the juxtaposition between the French furniture, the English fabrics, and the rustic wood paneling – it all works together and it looks fab-u-lous!!!!

I just want to say this.   I see so many houses in magazines, ones that cost millions of dollars, and they just bore.  Here – you have a 100 year old cottage, tiny, made of wood from the area, and the house could not be any more attractive, warm, inviting, and charming. 

It just made me so excited to get excited about about décor magazines again!  Shout out to Grace Kaynor for this cottage!!

2015:  The master bedroom is off the front, right next to the entry/dining room.  It is a twin to the entry.   I think the house was actually once a duplex with the two front doors and matching fireplaces in the front rooms.

Southern Living.  Again, white furniture brightens the room.  Here, the designer used a bed by Noir Furniture.  To give it patina, an extra layer of white paint was added to the bed.   The night table are custom and the lamps are from Ro Sham Beaux through Grace Kaynor’s Sotre.

2015:  This room is another bedroom/sitting room.  Again – all this Arts N Crafts furniture just melts into the paneling.  Let’s see what Grace did with the same space:

AND TODAY FROM   Southern Living:   AWWWWWW.   More French antiques, this time a daybed which makes the room versatile.  Use it as a sitting room for TV guest bedroom.   The French tufted mattress was custom made for the bed.

The Guest House.

The side door to the guest house.

BEFORE 2015:   The guest cottage was built sometimes after 1930 when the main cottage was built.  You can see the subtle differences in the two houses.  The floors in the guest house look like a tile of some kind, not wood.  The ceilings are also differently stained woods.  But, there are many similarities.  The exteriors are remarkedly the same with the guest cottage looking like a miniature version of the main cottage. 

Here the tiny sitting room of the guest cottage is shown with its winding staircase up to the loft bedroom.

TODAY:   Grace, the designer, used brighter, more fun colors in the guest cottage.   She chose a nautical theme in bright blues and reds.  The room is so tiny that her thought was the bold colors and prints would make it seem somewhat larger.  It does!


Before:  The bunk room.

Southern Living:  Grace created a nautical theme here.  All linens are from her shop @Sotre.

One more look at this precious Pass Christian cottage by Grace Kaynor.

Be sure to visit her web site and shop’s web site!

I hope you enjoyed this!!!  Major thanks for Southern Living for being here!!!!



  1. Joni I no longer subscribe to Southern Living but this little charmer tempts me. I can see why you fell in love with it. I agree I am so often not inspired with the homes that are so often featured in the shelter magazines. This is a little jewel. Thank you so much for featuring it and giving us a history lesson on Pass Christian!

  2. Beautiful homes! FYI, that's Robin Roberts from Good Morning America, not Robyn Rogers. :)

  3. Joni, let me just start out by saying bravo! You have outdone yourself, my dear. I absolutely love your posts and have missed you so much because yours is the only design blog worth reading. I'm astounded every time you post something new because you are meticulous with details, facts as well as history. I know if must take days, no--weeks, to gather details and pictures. Thank you again for your dedication and enlightening work. xxoo Ashley

  4. Great post! I’m with you...very little excites me these days! Thanks for sharing! Very sweet cottage! Much to learn about how furniture and colors can brighten natural woodwork!?!

  5. This was a lovely post to read. No doubt, the homes are gorgeous. I thank you for all the research and time you must have put into this post. There is a but coming.It is my opinion, and I am not alone, that places along a beach like these, subject to storm and hurricane damage, should not be rebuilt. After Hurricane Sandy, many communities were not allowed to rebuild, or if they were, they had to be built to a much higher standard, hopefully mitigating total destruction. Yes, it would be a shame not to have these avenues of lovely homes, but in each rebuild the historical context is diminished. I am also a bit weary of seeing my insurance rates climb every year, and feel like I am subsidizing those huge payments in order for coastal home owners to rebuild. As well, taxpayers pay for the roads and utilities and other major infrastructure that need rebuilding, time after time. It is time to let beaches and coastlines return to their natural state of shifting sands and wildlife.

  6. so agree - everything looks the same in the American magazines (and too many celebrities!). I'm so sick of them. The brit magazines ARE THE BEST! House & Garden, world of interiors, Cabana, etc.

  7. Thank you for another fantastic tour. I thoroughly enjoyed the respite from some of the craziness going on now. I especially was intrigued when you mention Karen Graham living there. I think she is the most beautiful model to grace the cover of Vogue. I also remember her as a spokeswoman for Estee Lauder. Thank you.

  8. Another amazing story you weave! I sure hope you know that the amount of time you put into researching, writing and adding pictures is something I truly look forward to. Because I know it will be so interesting and I will learn something new. Thank you, thank you Joni!

  9. This may sound crazy, but is that a Zuber wallpaper mural in the dining room? It reminds me of the mural in the White House diplomatic reception room, Views of America.

  10. Really enjoyed the photos and history lesson

  11. Not sure how you got her name so wrong since she have been a very famous broadcaster on ABC's Good Morning America for many years. Her name is Robin Roberts.

  12. Joni,

    I enjoyed this post immensely. I have driven through Pass Christian a couple of times, a passenger in a car with others and was unable to stop. One trip as a small child my heart swooned at the sight of the beautiful homes and oaks, while my imagination conjured up of ladies in long dressed with big hats walking upon the arms of fine gentlemen. The detail you shared today makes me want to go see! Like you, I think it would be much fun to decorate one of the gorgeous homes in Pass Christian (or a cottage). Our 30th anniversary is in two weeks, we planned a trip to France that is cancelled due to COVID, maybe instead we'll go to Mississippi! Thank you very much for this lovely post. As always beautifully written, incredibly informative, a lovely few moments spent reading this morning -

  13. What a great post, Joni! I always learn so much from your blog. Enjoyed the historical approach peppered with all the beautiful visuals.

  14. Loved your post! In 1970, my younger sister traveled to Pass Christian from Alvin, TX with her gospel singing group to a Gospel Singers of America convention. A year after Hurricane Camille, the devastation was still entirely evident--mattresses and refrigerators in the trees, completely bare apartment and house slabs, etc. My sister bought a book titled, "Camille, She Was No Lady", which was being sold to raise money for the rebuilding of the town. The pictures were amazing and simply unbelievable. People who live on the Gulf Coast are so resilient. They love their towns and the people who live there. The rebuilding of these beautiful homes is evidence of that.

  15. Loved this post about Pass Christian and the Little Pink House. Your blog is better than any magazine!

  16. I read and re-read my Southern Living!! Your COMPLETE breakdown of this beautiful area was...just...beautiful!! My one regret...that you never went back...fingers crossed you do. THANK YOU!! franki

  17. I do believe you meant to recognize Robin Roberts not Robyn Rogers.

  18. I enjoyed this post, Joni, but you need to read it over. Maybe you accidentally posted your first draft...?
    Or early morning covid drinking? I always blame stuff on my computer; that usually works. Ha!

  19. I got completely lost in this and didn't come up for air for hours. Many thanks to you, Joni, for a riveting journey of the mind, senses, and imagination. I will probably never get to Pass Christian, either. But I placed myself in every photo and simply enjoyed. Oh, the stories that I could conjure. Thank you, thank you, thank you!

    I never know where inspiration will come from. Now you can add to your long list of artistic and historical contributions to life, that also of 'inspiration giver.' I loved the design, color combinations, juxtaposition of shapes and textures, and the warmth of it all. I loved the historical context and the connections between people. But way beyond those lies the gift of inspiring me, and presumably others, to keep on--keep on being creative, keep on moving forward, and keep on being optimistic. How can I ever thank you for gracing me with so much

    I know,I know--you're only doing your job as a blogger! I hope you got as much out of it as I did!

  20. Oh Joni! What a wonderful wonderful trip to this magical place! Thank you so much!

    Again, you have exceeded your finest posts! In these dark dark days of this dreadful pandemic, you have given a window into beauty and taste and all of it completely off the beaten path! I am so grateful.

    Thank you so much for this lovely gift!

  21. I know about Robin Roberts - omg! I think it was part autocorrect. But I do want to call her Rogers not Roberts for some reason. Sorry!!

    And thanks for all your sweet comments. !!!!! The date on the blog ws backdated and they were all waiting to be accepted!!! Weird. Computers are so weird!!!