Everything we do is grounded in empowering you to live your life to its fullest potential. Our unique approach and vision has enabled us to adapt a diverse range of homes for distinctive people, all with one goal, an inspired life.
We believe that every building holds the power to engage, support, and enable its community to thrive. The stories that lie within the walls of buildings should be cherished and honored as they are essential links to our history and our past. While we do not live in the past, we find inspiration, knowledge, and value in the builders and designers that came before us. We learn from the ingenuity of their day and find delight in offering our clients honest, unexpected and refined design.
We currently specialize in reclaiming mid-century modern, modest, and ranch homes in greater Phoenix. Every project begins by sifting down to the essentials. Equipped with industry knowhow and our Client’s desires, we mine existing structures to uncover the original elements and character of the space. We carefully consider each building’s history, environment, and unique surroundings to create an outward facing space that truly improves the larger pattern of its neighborhood. Our aim is to provide you with a unique space that you will be proud of while at the same time contributing to the betterment of our cities and the preservation of their history.
Cavin Costello received his Masters degree and made the drive to Phoenix, Arizona sight unseen. The inspiration he found in work done by the Desert School of Architecture paired with the complexities and opportunities to be had in the rapidly urbanizing southwest sealed his commitment. He had not yet been a full day in Phoenix when he met Claire Aton, a Phoenix native looking to make the most of her recent move back home. The two quickly bonded over their ideals of the built environment, how to improve upon it and its ability to influence. Not settling for a hard hit economy to dictate their next move the duo decided to act. After looking at several houses, Claire and Cavin realized that their best asset was seeing past the current and seeing the potential in spaces. So, they bought a fixer upper and experienced first hand the trials and tribulations of redesign.
The two continued on their own path developing the First Phoenix Green Construction Code project, designing for realtor and investment groups, and creating inspired homes for unique homeowners. This year, Cavin and Claire are looking forward to new opportunities and challenges. 2013 marks the first year that one of The Ranch Mine’s homes will be featured on the loved Modern Phoenix Home Tour. We hope you’ll join us at the event come April! We have many more exciting updates to come so, stay tuned and visit our Blog!
Re – Claim [ri - kleym]
verb used with object
to bring back to a preferable manner of living, sound principles, ideas, etc.
Cavin Costello, Chief Designer
Cavin Costello is the son of a civil engineer who endeavored to build his own house in rural Connecticut. It is safe to say that this exposure to building systems mixed with a “go get ‘em” attitude laid the foundation for Cavin’s bright future. Cavin pursued his childhood passion at Northeastern University in Boston, a Co-op school, from which he received a Bachelor of Science in Architecture, a Master of Architecture, and 2 years of invaluable full-time employment in leading architecture firms. His enthusiasm for design lead him to Phoenix, Arizona where he is devoted to revitalizing neighborhoods through the redesign of homes and hangouts within the Valley of the Sun. Now, Cavin has three years of residential design experience in the Valley, has been honored as a featured speaker at engagements at Arizona State University, Northeastern University, Phoenix Urban Design Week and Modern Phoenix Week, and will be sharing his expertise in an upcoming publication from the University of Georgia Press.
Claire Aton, Chief Executive
Claire Aton is a native Phoenician who received unique exposure to rambling ranches, mid-century modern and desert architecture. Claire was young when she was asked to pick up a shovel and do some dirty work at her aunt and uncles in Tucson. This “dirty work” was digging dirt to build the first rammed earth house Claire had ever known of. Leaving the desert behind, Claire ventured to the University of Colorado at Boulder where she received concurrent Bachelor of Science degrees in English and Communication. Her time away from Arizona led Claire to travel the world, fueling a desire to make real change and igniting a belief in the power of action. Upon returning to her hometown, Claire sought to make a familiar place new, exciting and her own. Emboldened with an entrepreneurial spirit Claire is committed to reclaiming her hometown of Phoenix one home & hangout at a time. Today, Claire embraces a hands-on approach to design and development and works toward shaping a more vibrant community through the Carriage House, a modular concept that is taking large strides at the highly acclaimed incubator Seed Spot.
How We Work
Have a home or hangout that could use some redesign? Interested in moving your home or hangout? Follow the steps below to get started with us!
1. Visit our Contact tab, tell us about your dreams of renovation or relocation and upload pictures of your home or hangout.
2. We’ll call you once we receive your completed form and schedule an on-site consultation to speak face-to-face about the scope & goals for your project.
3. After the on-site consultation, we will draft a Design Agreement that will outline our fees and services specific to your needs.
4. With the paperwork signed our process will look a little something like this:
Existing Conditions: photographing and measuring the site needing some redesign
Schematic Design: exploring new floor plan & layout options
Design Development: stylizing materials including lighting, flooring, color schemes, & all other finishing details
Construction Documents: specify, draw & print plans to be used in the redesign of the home or hangout as needed to meet City Permitting &/or Contractor use
Bidding: we can work with you while you meet with your prospective contractors in order to clarify the provided construction documents to ensure comparison is “apples to apples.”
Construction Administration: throughout the construction of your dream we are available to continue any troubleshooting necessary to ensure your satisfaction.
In The News
Check out some of our newsworthy successes below!
URBAN RENEWAL by The Arizona Republic
A WINDOW ON HISTORY by The Arizona Republic
MODERN RANCH MAKEOVER by The Arizona Republic
A SPLASHIER BATH by The Arizona Republic
COOL HOME: THE REA’S MIDCENTURY MODERN IN PHOENIX by AZ Central
STYLISH BATHROOM REMODEL FOR LESS THAN $5,000 by AZ Central
HAVER SAVER by AZ Magazine
HOME REDOS & DON’TS by AZ Magazine
DWELLING OF THE WEEK: THE CASTAWAY HOUSE by Desert Living Today
AWARD-WINNING ENERGY EFFICIENT G HOME IN PHOENIX by Inhabitat
HISTORIC REVIVAL REHAB IN CENTRAL PHOENIX by Jetson Green
NAHB GREEN REMODEL OF THE YEAR 2012 by Jetson Green
CASTAWAY HOUSE IS A COOL GREEN RENOVATION by Jetson Green
BEFORE AND AFTER: PHOENIX RANCH REMODEL by EcoBuilding Pulse
THE RANCH MINE TRANSFORMS OLD HOUSES INTO CUSTOM HOMES FOR GENERATION Y by New Times Best Urban Blog winner Blooming Rock
PHOENIX 100 CREATIVES: #69 CAVIN COSTELLO by Phoenix New Times Jackalope Ranch
Check out where we’ve Lectured and Presented below!
HOT REAL ESTATE YOU CAN BUY FOR UNDER $250,000 OR LESS on NBC’s TODAY show with Barbara Corcoran
RECLAMATION NATION: DEVELOPING A RESIDENTIAL TRANSECT at Phoenix Urban Design Week 2012
CASTAWAY HOUSE AND PHOENIX GREEN CONSTRUCTION CODE from the Building Phoenix television program
Lectures and Presentations
Check out some of our lectures and presentations below!
MODERN RANCH MAKEOVERS at Modern Phoenix Week 2013
SUSTAINABLE CHOICES FOR YOUR MID-CENTURY MODERN REMODEL at Modern Phoenix Week 2012
MID-CENTURY TO MID-CENTURY: ADAPT TO PROSPER at Arizona Historic Preservation Conference 2013
ADDING SPACE & SAVING FACE: THE CARRIAGE HOUSE at Arizona Historic Preservation Conference 2013
CASTAWAY HOUSE: THE 1ST EVER PHOENIX GREEN CONSTRUCTION CODE PROJECT at Northeastern University
RECESSION SESSION: DESIGNING YOUR POST-COLLEGIATE CAREER at Northeastern University
Check out some of our client reviews below!
Flying Colors Client
“First I will say that I’m impossible to work with. Partly because I’m new at this and of course I was expecting TV style Property Brothers results (cost timeline etc), and partly because I’m maniacally particular, impatient and stubborn by nature. My taste is ultra modern, simple, and unique and the Team at Ranch Mine gobbled up these challenging conditions and PRODUCED without flinching.
We chose Ranch Mine over Construction Zone (also a local AZ design/builder) because Cavin and his team seemed to specialize more in reusing as much of the existing materials as possible, building in SMART, SUSTAINABLE solutions while hitting style preference. Their genuine interest in getting our concept and desires right the first time amounted to a pretty involved vetting session that made us feel like they appreciate our job and how it will impact our lives moving forward vs. the “ya ya ya we’ve got this covered..we’ll figure it out” lip service that came from the competition.
Their out of the box green additions were a great surprise and we can’t wait to see them in action.
Furthermore, let me say that Cavin’s Construction Documents (final stage in preparing his design for a contractor to put into place) were consistently celebrated with all 4 building contractors we interviewed. All were impressed at the amount of specific detail he included in the docs, and all seemed to independently agree that his efforts up front would surely help the project get completed as quickly as possible.
It’s been a gift to work with Cavin and his team and I’d highly recommend Ranch Mine to anyone looking for the same experience I’ve described above.”
Sun View Clients John and Ann Rea
Creative, responsive, cost conscious, The Ranch Mine was a great find for us. With them we were able to create our dream house, we completely remodeled a 50′s ranch into a modern, livable space. When people walk in to our home for the the first time, they say wow!
At Firefly Living we have had the pleasure of working with Cavin Costello and Claire Aton of The Ranch Mine on multiple projects. They have a unique ability to take old outdated floor plans and refresh them so that they make sense in today’s modern world. The projects we have completed with the Ranch Mine have garnered national attention and accolades. Renovations are complex projects and their insights and experience definitely simplify the process. We would recommend anyone considering taking on a big project work with the Ranch Mine team.
Bath Kit Clients Bryan and Jenny Babich
“We are extremely happy with our experience with The Ranch Mine’s Bath Kit. They were incredibly nice, extremely organized and we are thrilled with their recommendations. We went into this process stressed and overwhelmed about remodeling our bathrooms and thanks to The Ranch Mine, we are excited to get started.”