Katie's Charming Venice Beach Bungalow

Katie's Charming Venice Beach Bungalow

Marcia Prentice
Jun 27, 2012

Name: Katie Bernhisel
Location: Venice - Los Angeles, California
Size: 450 square feet
Years lived in: Almost 9 years

Living by the beach is the ultimate California dream! When Katie was looking for her own place she had a pretty steep list of requirements. She didn't want roommates, definitely wanted a house and had to live by the beach - after all, if she was going to move to California, then why not completely indulge in the lifestyle? She was very lucky to find a very cute bungalow in Venice. It's small, but perfect for her needs.

What I find so impressive about Katie's home is how she really maximized the space. She obviously loves clothes, so both her bedroom and living room closets are used to store her extensive wardrobe (who would know what was behind the door in the living room?) She also managed to create two separate seating areas in her tiny living room. Everything in the house is scaled to the size of the home, so the space doesn't feel cramped.

Apartment Therapy Survey:

My Style: I would describe my style as eclectic and comfortable. I buy things that I believe I will love for a very long time and it ends up being a conversion of many different styles.

Inspiration: I'm working with a very small space, so it takes a lot of thought and planning to bring any new items in. I take a lot of inspiration from vintage pieces, particularly from the 60's and 70's and Mexican, South American and Navajo textiles and ceramics. I will end up decorating a room based on the accessories. Lamps lamps lamps!

Favorite Element: It feels like home. It's cozy, but not too crowded and the porch/yard gives the illusion that it's more spacious.

Biggest Challenge: The small size of the rooms, I couldn't get my dresser into my bedroom! Also the lack of electrical outlets. I love lamps, but I don't get to use them in every room.

What Friends Say: It's charming and cozy. The yard is a big draw for parties.

Biggest Embarrassment: I don't have space for a dining table. It's nice to entertain out in the yard, but it would ideal to have a place to sit and eat inside other than the couch. I haven't figured a way to work that in yet.

Proudest DIY: I did all of the interior painting as well as the porch stools. Nothing too complicated, but it definitely was a process.

Biggest Indulgence: The couch and the antique rug in the living room

Best Advice: Don't be hasty. Take time to find pieces you really love; you have to live with it. I guess that's an easier concept when you're only working with 450 square feet! Also, when you come across a great surprise... go for it!

Dream Sources: HD Buttercup is a go-to spot for me. They have plenty of designers all in one location.

Resources of Note:



  • HD Buttercup - Couch and Mid-Century dresser
  • Stansbury Collection - Black dresser in living room
  • Vintage - Coffee table
  • From my grandparents home - Chairs (although they were recovered) and bookshelf
  • Pier1 Imports - Patio furniture





  • All the flooring was here when I moved in





Thanks, Katie!

(Images: Marcia Prentice)

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Re-edited from a post originally published. 6.13.14 - AB

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