Updating Classic America: Ranches

Updating Classic America: Ranches

SKU# 070802

Design Ideas for Renovating, Remodeling, and Building New

Louis Wasserman
M. Caren Connolly


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  • Product # 070802
  • Type Paperback
  • ISBN 978-1-56158-741-4
  • Published Date 2006
  • Dimensions 9-1/4 x 10-7/8
  • Pages 208
  • Photos color photos
  • Drawings and drawings
Transform an ordinary ranch into the home youve always wanted with Ranches, the latest entry in Taunton's acclaimed Updating Classic America series.

The ranch can be found everywhere on both coasts and in Americas heartland too. The ranch is simple, functional, and unassuming -- and homeowners are rediscovering just how flexible and affordable ranches can be. M. Caren Connolly and Louis Wasserman provide a unique combination of outstanding designs and proven ideas for renovating, remodeling, and building a ranch-style home. Featuring more than 20 examples of updated homes and new ranches, the book is illustrated with inspiring original color photography and before and after floor plans.

In this book youll discover:
  • a wealth of successful design solutions to problems faced by the millions of people who own or build ranch-style homes
  • options for a variety of budgets, styles and sizes
  • a history and overview of the form as well as a glossary of typical design elements/details for people who want to restore their homes
About the authors
Landscape architect M. Caren Connolly and architect Louis Wasserman, AIA, share an architectural practice in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. Their work, including research funded by the National Endowment for the Arts, has been nationally recognized. Their first book, Bungalows, was published in 2002 by The Taunton Press.
Table of Contents

1. Return of the Ranch
Ranch Appeal
Ranch Hallmarks
Origins of the Ranch
A Classic Contemporary
Ranch Options

2. Ranch Revival
Ready for an Update
Expect the Unexpected
California Dreaming
Two into One
Surprise Package
Santa Monica Pier
Empty Nest

3. The Complete Ranch
The Building Boom Meets the Baby Boom
Before You Add On
Courtyard Living
Ranch with a Mission
Refined and Simplified
Back to the Ranch
Stretching the Envelope

4. Ranch Makeovers
From Grand to Bland, and Back Again
Capturing the View
Out to Pasture
All in the Family
TV Dinner to Fusion Cuisine
Learning to Relax
Total Transformation
Cool and Deliberate
Making the Headlines

5. New Ranches
Why Build New?
A Modest House
Belonging to the Land
The Ranch Rides Again


Ranch houses. These two words immediately conjure up a definitive image of American suburban homes, childhood stories, and mixed emotions. For a long time, Ranch houses were the homes everyone loved to hate. In the 1980s and '90s, America went on a wild residential building spree, resulting in ostentatious homes sitting alone on huge lots. In contrast, the closely knit, cul-de-sac Ranch neighborhoods of the '50s, '60s, and '70s began to look pretty good. They provide the opportunity for community many of us seek and that mini-estate living cannot provide.

Homebuyers are giving Ranch neighborhoods a second glance and a second chance. They are discovering that the Ranch style is a lot more flexible than anyone ever gave it credit for. The growing interest in Ranch homes is not about nostalgia, it's about the continuity of modern design principles: simplicity, functionality, and clarity. We think American residential design is now at the stage, like a child moving from adolescence to adulthood, when the frenzy for following the latest trend and impressing people is less important than it once was. Many house hunters today are coming to the realization that as one of the all-American housing types, the Ranch provides quality living experience over quantity of elaborate finishes, fussy details, and excess square footage. Opportunities to suit a variety of housing interests, from historic renovation to remaking the Ranch into a totally different style to building brand-new, can be found in most Ranch neighborhoods.

The Ranch has not only survived, it's on its way to timelessness.

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