By Rachel Bosworth
The East End has long been a draw for those looking to trade the confines of metropolitan life for barefoot afternoons and fresh, salty air, even if just for a weekend. Many have found the Hamptons as an ideal location for second and third homes, with new abodes serving as destinations themselves. Designed to entertain, there is often a constant flow of family and friends from the Memorial Day to Labor Day weekends. With this in mind, the modern and minimalist trend on the East End in terms of architecture design has been a cornerstone in new construction, which is on the upswing, and renovations for years.
Architect Blaze Makoid and the team at his namesake firm have been creating thoughtfully designed, luxury residential spaces since Makoid founded the firm in 2001. Noting they are often affluent and socially networked world travelers, his clients have visited some of the world’s most interesting places, allowing them to have a viewpoint in their own architecture projects.. Makoid’s methodology takes into consideration that each client has different needs, and that no two projects are ever the same.
“I think that our approach/focus on modernism is in its ability to maximize the informal relationship between indoor and outdoor,” Mr. Makoid says. “This isn’t just a visual experience, it’s a lifestyle. The easy transition from inside to outside and back works with the way our clients want to use their vacation homes. We approach these projects as personal resorts.”
There are two overarching mantras at Blaze Makoid Architecture. The first is that no one should recognize one of their projects just from driving by as they work to create unique individual homes for each client. The second is that no one should be able to tell when a home was built. “I think trends are dangerous in architecture since what we do has to last a long time,” explains the architect, adding that if someone can tell when a project was built that his team probably failed. “We’re looking to do something that is as close to timeless as possible. I’m not sure this is ever completely achievable, but it’s a great goal.”
Minimalist design is achieved through simplicity. Each of the few elements should be functional in its purpose, all while having a clean yet attractive aesthetic. The style should have a sense of timelessness to it, allowing a home or commercial space to transcend the eras and changing trends. “I’m always a bit wary of labels, although minimalist is not a bad one, depending on exactly what we’re talking about,” says Makoid. “I like to reduce, reduce, reduce. At the same time, I think most people who visit our projects feel a sense of warmth and luxury. People can live in our houses.”
Makoid notes that designs made up of many moving parts can result in projects that become dated quickly, something the company always strives to avoid. Thanks to more than 30 years of licensed practice, Makoid has developed a signature style that is tailored to his individual clients.
After graduating Rhode Island School of Design for architecture, Makoid worked for a small firm designing high end custom homes in Boston, later graduating onto larger firms in Philadelphia where he served as a design director. It was a position in which he found little satisfaction as he made the shift from designer to manager. Eventually he carved out a space for himself in the architecture world, opening his own firm on the East End after September 11, with two small renovation projects to start. Today, his 16-person firm in Bridgehampton, which also has an outpost in Lake Tahoe, works collaboratively both internally and externally.
“Some of our most interesting projects are the simplest forms or diagrams,” Makoid says. “They achieve their richness and beauty in the development of materials and details. I also appreciate the flexibility modernism has that allows us to explore the best way to acknowledge what a given site has to offer. Whether it’s a view, a light condition during a certain time of day or a topographic feature I find it a more responsive approach.”
For more information, visit blazemakoid-architecture.com.