Style Tips: Wish They All Could Be California Bungalows

A California bungalow is a style that appeals to a wide range of tastes. They're perfect for modern remodelling or for a traditional restoration.
California bungalow

What Is A California Bungalow?

A California bungalow is so named because it became popular in California as a result of sociological changes in Los Angeles and Pasadena, where single-family housing was increasing, at a time when they were growing rapidly.

Bungalows in Australia have sloping roofs – they are typically a single-storey house with a wide verandah, especially with the roof covering the verandah. 

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What Inspired The California Bungalow Trend?

The bungalow derives its name from the Indian province of Bengal, where bangla means “house in Bengali style”. British administrators built bungalows based on the native thatched roof huts of the area. The bungalow style was refined and popularised in the United States during the late 1800s.

During the 1920s, the California bungalow became the preferred design for homes, with influences from the Mediterranean and Spanish Mission styles as well. 

As early as 1913, California bungalows became one of the most popular types of housing in Australia, a trend that lasted until the 1970s and even into the 1980s. 

It remains a much-loved architectural icon, but now requires updating and some of them even have a heritage listing.

Colour Palettes Of The California Bungalow

A sophisticated monochromatic neutral palette subtly highlights the architectural features of the California bungalow in Australia.

California Bungalow: Interior Ideas

While wooden floors are historically used inside California bungalows, there is a strong argument for patterned tiles to emphasise the home’s heritage characteristics. 

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California Bungalow: Exterior Ideas

The external colour schemes are usually red, or livened brick-colours, but they can also feature greys, rendered, roughcast and weatherboard finishes. Pathways, entrances, verandahs and walkways can be tiled or finished with stonework for dramatic effect.

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California Bungalow: More Design Ideas

The design considerations for a California bungalow are geared towards being elegant, classic, comfortable, homely and simple. Stained glass windows, antique furniture, a stylish front door and verandah pylons are typical additions to emphasise its character.

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(Pictures: Pinterest, realestate.com.au, theinteriorsaddict, lampsplus, wattyl)

Related Link

Californian Bungalow – National Trust of Australia (PDF)


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