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BLAINE architects puts honesty at the heart of their holistic approach to modern design
Fridays on the Homefront
The Eichler Network welcomes BLAINE architects and its principal architects, Megan and Keith Blaine (pictured above), a new addition to our roster of preferred service companies. BLAINE architects serves the Eichlers of Marin County and San Francisco with architectural design and consultation. Photo: James Fanucchi

Ask most people what they like about modern design and they say something about admiring the clean lines. The principals behind BLAINE architects prefer another adjective: honest.

"We believe in honest design, and these homes are really honest," says Megan Blaine, half of the husband-and-wife team who also happen to own and reside in an original 1951, Anshen and Allen-designed Eichler. "We were looking for a really long time before we got one."

"For us, honesty is an holistic approach to design and construction," adds Keith, who is 2020 president of a local chapter of the American Institute of Architects. Of the firm's admiration for Eichlers, he adds, "I feel mid-century modern homes are more honest in what they are...They're not trying to be something they're not."

BLAINE architects opened their doors in 2015, when the couple was working for London-based Foster + Partners on designs for the new Bay Area campus for Apple. Five years after moving back to California to begin their practice, they moved the firm to more spacious quarters in San Jose in 2020.

"We accept other projects, but we're pretty specialized [in mid-century modern homes] at this point," admits Megan, who says they have worked on Mackay homes of this style along with more than a dozen Eichlers. "They're not built with joists, everything's exposed. I really like that about Eichlers…You have the structural grids and then from there, everything else sort of falls into place."

  Fridays on the Homefront
The Eichler Network's ‘Home Maintenance Directory 2020'—where you're able to meet additional companies you can trust for your next home improvement project. For the current 2020 edition, click here.

"The honesty really comes down to the materials and the way they're used, their expression, and the structural components," concurs Keith. By design, he says, "They're kind of reducing the amount of mental noise."

Material vendors favored by the Blaines include several Eichler Network participating service companies, Eichler Siding and Dura-Foam Solar Center among them. They also like Kerf wooden cabinets for the kitchen, and tile from Fireclay Tile and Heath Ceramics.

Pointing out that modern homes use "inherently safer materials," Keith says this helps establish a permanence of style: "There's this kind of timelessness to Eichler homes."

Although the couple recently expanded their staff to five with two new designers, Megan said, "Keith and I are the lead architects, so we drive all the design."

"I think we're pretty true to the mid-century style, with some clever upgrades that make the home more functional," Megan says confidently.

Keith agrees, promising, "We design in a way that pays homage to the homes' design and materials."


BLAINE architects
Architectural Design & Consultation
Serving Marin County & San Francisco
[email protected]

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