Before and After: A 1950s Brick Ranch’s Redo Gives It Contemporary Curb Appeal
If you have an older house, you might also have a carport — and you might be looking for ways to update it without having to totally demo the whole thing. Designer Sav Gordon has proved it’s possible. Her curb appeal refresh for this 1957 brick ranch home took the the driveway from dated to defined, all without losing the signature feature of this mid-century house.
“This 1950s brick ranch already had so much charm when I first saw it,” she says. “I loved the idea of breathing life into an old home that felt ready to become someone’s dream home. It felt like I was a historian digging out a perfectly preserved artifact.”
Sav says she wanted to keep the red brick of the house, but she was looking for a way to modernize the overall exterior and to reinforce the carport beams. “I had been really inspired by some of the old craftsman homes in the area,” she says. She decided to paint the trim and non-brick exterior details black, and then she searched for a craftsman-style beam design that “still felt modern and would complement the mid-century vibe of the rest of the house.”
“I spent HOURS (days?) on Pinterest… and this is where we landed!” she explains. In addition to widening the beams of the carport, Sav also wanted to make the porch area more substantial.
“The biggest hurdle with the front porch was that the original, smaller porch was made with concrete, which had settled over the years,” she says. “So, we first had to level it out before extending the porch. I had originally planned to tile its floor, but after fixing the original concrete pad, it was too close to the threshold of the front door, so we had to paint and stain it instead so it was all one consistent color.”
Sav says the porch (now more pronounced and more visible thanks to the cleared hedges) is her favorite part of the “after,” along with the light pink paint shade (Behr’s Cockleshell) she used on the doors. “I was hesitant to do a pink tone but I’m SO GLAD I did,” Sav says. (And fun fact: The front door was a $50 Facebook Marketplace find, vintage solid wood, that was custom cut to fit the house.)
“I love that I really created an indoor/outdoor living vibe,” Sav says. Her other changes that modernize the space include the poured concrete driveway, the removal of the shutters to “streamline the exterior look and make it less bulky,” and the new mulch in the yard.
If you’re looking to start a curb appeal project this summer but don’t know where to start, use Sav’s revamped property as inspiration — then check out these 22 other outdoor project ideas.
Inspired? Submit your own project here.