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'50s Rancher Gets Artful Makeover

An outdated 1950s suburban tract home goes contemporary with a design emphasizing clean lines, earthy colors, and a unique mixture of tropical and modern landscaping.

Homeowners Mark Anderson and Christian Oberhauser can't wait to modernize their boxy '50s tract home, and hope to bring their love for modern design into the project. Designer Kimberly Rider helps them incorporate contemporary shapes, styles, and accents to help bring the home up to date, while landscape designer Brad Frazier uses a variety of complementary plants and stone to dress up the yard.

Here's how they accomplish it:


  • replace the old 50’s style diamond windows with new clean modern ones
  • redo the roof with new asphalt shingles
  • paint the house a warm gray, with white trim
  • install a new wooden front door
  • new paths made of modern square paving stones
  • modern pavers at the entryway
  • build out the porch posts with more wood, and give them a low-cost finish that resembles stucco
  • give the concrete on the porch & steps a salt finish
  • lay down fragrant cocoa mulch in landscape beds
  • new plants: grass palms, laurel petalum, purple princess flower and photenia
  • boulders go in near the entry area
  • accent features: new aluminum mailbox, and a modern nickel and glass porch light

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