Designer Candace Rein nails small space style for the Director of Content at Parachute. Check out her client's light-filled Los Angeles casita, full of organic materials and smart tricks.
Photos by Amy Bartlam.
One would think that a New Yorker moving to LA would yearn for a sprawling space, but Rebecca Prusinowski, Director of Content at Parachute, was willing to make an exception for something special.. After relocating to the West Coast and subletting in various neighborhoods with various roommates, she landed in a totally adorable (and totally tiny) Frogtown home. How small you say? Small enough to carry the moniker “casita” with pride.
Thankfully Homepolish designer Candace Rein isn’t daunted by a petite (only 500 square feet) footprint.
“The casita has a quiet luxury about it,” Candace gushes. “The goal was to select pieces that could accommodate the floorplan, but also exude sophistication, natural luxury, and warmth,” Candace explains.
About that floorplan…The casita is blessed with amazing light, privacy, and a classically LA yard (complete with citrus trees, bougainvillea, etc), but it’s also “blessed” with an unusual layout. The living room, office nook, dining nook, and kitchen are all one open space, meaning Candace and Rebecca needed to get creative. It helps that they were working from a blank space.
“There was nothing in the space when we started the project—nothing!” Candace explains.
Minus a bed (she works at Parachute after all), Rebecca had moved to LA nearly possession-free. Candace sourced quality pieces with maximum functionality, balancing vintage and contemporary furniture while threading it together with a plethora of plants and artwork.
“Rebecca has a very busy life with a fast-paced startup schedule, so it was important for her to come home to something cozy and neutral.”
To create the zen vibes, Candace leaned on organic and textural materials—balancing the concrete floors with leather, cowhide, sheepskin, linen, tweed, walnut, marble, linen, brass and lots of ceramics.
With the material palette locked, Candace chose furniture that gives the small space gravitas.
“I enjoyed playing with proportion on this project,” Candace said. “Some of the furniture is leaner to accommodate the space, but the desk is huge—functioning as an office nook with books, records and ample work space.”
In the kitchen, a bistro table and custom wrap-around bench create a cozy dining nook. A matching floating shelf, also swathed in white with an exposed walnut stripe, helps maximize the vertical space. A vintage chair keeps the look grounded.
“The kitchen chair and living room chair were great finds on Craigslist,” Candace said. “They’re both walnut with nice silhouettes, and we reupholstered them in a neutral linen.”
In the living room, Candace knew finding a sofa with a shallow depth was essential to avoid overwhelming the small space.
“Rebecca sent me a few sofas she loved, and they were so deep that they took up half the room,” Candace said. “It was comical.”
They landed on a slim, elegant sofa from Article and outfitted it with sumptuous textures (again, she works at Parachute!), but the biggest dose of personality comes from the gallery wall. Rebecca had shipped her art collection cross coast, and Candace enlisted the help of Poster Child Prints to arrange, frame, and install the living room’s focal point. (Editor’s note: in the office we couldn’t get enough of the Georgia O’Keeffe “Women Who Rode Away” print, nabbed on Rebecca’s travels to Santa Fe.)
“I especially love the gallery wall because it incorporates artwork from my friends and travels, which makes me feel like I’m home,” Rebecca gushes. “Plus it makes the room feel larger than it is!”
That illusion of grandeur comes through in the whole project, something Rebecca is thrilled about.
Our goal was to create a relaxing and inspiring space that transcended its square footage—and we nailed it!” Rebecca says. “Each piece serves a purpose but is also super comfortable and inviting. Partnering with Homepolish was a breeze. Starting from scratch felt daunting, but we divided the space into different functional areas, which made the project feel way more manageable.”