You might opt for Arts and Crafts oak or Frank Lloyd Wright red, depending on your plan for your home’s overall look."Ranch houses were built as entire neighborhoods," says Hess.
"We’re not just talking about an individual building." That’s one reason he cautions against changing the fundamental shape of the ranch house.
• Create a welcoming entry by adding graceful curves to your driveway, walkway and landscape.
• Provide an intimate sheltered entry in an inset porch.
She advises renovators to expose the beams and add ceiling fans."Because ranches were low and horizontal, it meant that they could easily be added onto," says Hess.
"Not only does it look elegant, it breaks up the monotony of long horizontal architecture," she says.Q My husband and I have been living in our ranch home since the 1970s, and we are finally ready to do some upgrading to make it a little more current. The earth-hugging prairie-style houses pioneered by Frank Lloyd Wright and the popular California bungalow styles paved the way for the ranch. The informal ranch style evolved from several 20th century styles.Katherine Ann Samon, author of "Ranch House Style," suggests replacing a kitchen window with french doors that open to a front patio."It makes the room feel bigger, and you don’t have to go through the living or dining room to get to the outside," she says.If it's in your budget, she says, take down the separating walls and add an island.
“The minute you do that you’ve extended the entire feeling of the house,” she says.