Getting the download link through email is temporarily not available. Please check back later.
To get the free app, enter your mobile phone number.
Ranches: Design Ideas for Renovating, Remodeling, and Buil (Updating Classic America) Paperback – March 1, 2006
See the Best Books of the Month
Want to know our Editors' picks for the best books of the month? Browse Best Books of the Month, featuring our favorite new books in more than a dozen categories.
Frequently Bought Together
Customers Who Bought This Item Also Bought
About the Author
Top Customer Reviews
I have no connection to this book or the author, but it bugs me when I'm trying to decide whether to get a book, based on the ratings, to have them intentionally weighted like this.
The first thing you notice when flipping through the book is the sheer number and beauty of the color photographs. There is a color photo on just about every page. When there's not, then there is a diagram, such as "Fireplace Options," which shows you several ways to design an updated fireplace. Other diagrams show "before and after" floor plans, and a plan showing the early roots of the original ranch homes. Thus, it's not just pretty pictures presented here--there's a lot of nuts and bolts information.
The authors start off with a history of the ranch style, since it helps when updating to keep within the original concepts that the style evolved with. I learned that the current ranch design was originally popularized by designer Cliff May in California. But May drew inspiration from the traditional ranchos of the southwest. These ranchos in turn had evolved over the millenia from the atrium houses of the Romans. These ancient houses were "closed off" from the streets, whilst providing a private outdoor space for family living, the same as many ranches today.
The authors discuss how in ranch houses form follows function. For instance, typical ranch houses have been built with large windows to allow for passive solar heating--thus these were the some of the first energy efficient houses. Also, there were often more large windows and glass doors in the back of the house than the front.Read more ›
The photo lay-outs are certainly a bit overpowering, but I find the text as well as the photos give somewhat a practical quality to this book.
I bought a ranch some 13 years ago, and have been making the improvements that seem called for. Most of this time my only resource materials were magazines from the late '50s and early '60s (and I had to buy them in antique stores).
As I think back, had I had this book when I moved in, I wouldn't have spent so much time with the "should I or shouldn't I" dilemmas that go with major remodeling.
For instance, it took me over a year just to decide on adding a 300 square foot sun room. The authors showed examples how well this upgrade works when done to maintain the basic integrity of the architecture.
New windows, room make overs, bathrooms, kitchens and on it goes, but with an insight you seldom get from another source.
There are plenty of TV programs devoted to remodeling . . . ripping off old dark paneling and snatching up shag carpeting, but considering the rampant "real life" examples of bad remodeling projects, due in some measure to a lack of clear conceptual assistance, I argue this book should be "standard equipment" with the purchase of any ranch.
A note: This book is not for someone looking to DIY a project on the weekend, and there are other books that are more appropriate for those who can live with particle board and $5 "oops" paint from Home Depot as their "home renovation." The updates in this book are beautiful and of architectural quality, ideal for someone who wants to make a solid investment in their home.
I recommend this book - easy and interesting to read and lovely photographs.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
More floor plans would be nice. Also, we all don't have huge budgets.Published 6 months ago by Christine D.
Lots of fun ideas for any of us with a mid century home. Many of the ideas, however take too much money or are better suited for a western styled ranch home. Read morePublished on March 18, 2014 by Teresa Duke Holimon
This book has great ideas and inspiration for owners of mid century houses. It is a good starting point for researching remodeling ideas that do not compromise the integrity of the... Read morePublished on March 2, 2014 by Canuckmom
Not exactly what I had been looking for but nice layout. Wanted something with ideas for renovating a rancher. Interesting, but didnt meet our needs.Published on July 18, 2013 by Kay Medford
This isn't even a new book but it's delightful to read about the old ranch-style houses that were remodeled / updated. Read morePublished on June 10, 2013 by VRO
Good resource for evaluating MCM styles, furnishings and colors. Definitely worth the price and even better as a retro resource.Published on April 8, 2013 by KDBilly