Art & Design Alum, Laura Custodie, Hired as First In-House Interior Designer at Cutting Edge Homes

Suffolk University Art & Design alum, Laura Custodie, has been hired as the first in-house interior designer at Cutting Edge Homes Inc. in Massachusetts. According to their website, Cutting Edge Homes is an all-inclusive firm that prides itself, “on a fully integrated architecture and construction approach with an obligation to craftsmanship, creativity, and value.” The addition of an interior design department will allow Cutting Edge Homes to bolster its reputation as an all-inclusive design-build firm.

For more information on Cutting Edge Homes Inc. and Laura’s new role, please see the full press release below.

Congratulations Laura!

Cutting Edge Homes Hires In-House Interior Designer

Builds on Reputation of Single Source Accountability

Boston, MA – Cutting Edge Homes, Inc., is proud to announce Laura Custodie as Senior Interior Designer, a new position within the firm. Laura will be responsible for managing the interior design department of Cutting Edge Homes, while significantly expanding the firms core values of craftsmanship, creativity, and value.  

Custodie joins the Cutting Edge team with expertise in residential interior design with luxury boutique firms across Massachusetts. After receiving her M.A. in Interior Design from the New England School of Art and Design at Suffolk University, Laura worked at notable interior design firms such as Kristina Crestin Design, and Bees Knees Interior Design and Daher Interior Design where she played an integral role in the on-site project management and coordination of high-end residential projects on both the North Shore and in Boston.  

The addition of an interior design department builds on Cutting Edge Homes’ reputation as an all-inclusive boutique firm. Laura’s expertise in sourcing cabinetry, tile, plumbing, and lighting, along with furniture, rugs, and drapery is a major benefit to the Cutting Edge client. Whether they are looking to renovate one room, or custom build the home of their dreams, having an in-house interior designer will streamline the process and create more cohesiveness and a more creative final product.

“Leading the interior design department for an all-inclusive firm gives me the ability to work in a different way with our clients,” notes Laura.  “Having direct collaboration with the architects and project managers throughout the design + build process has such a positive impact on the execution of the final product. I love that every day I am doing something different.”

“We have taken another important step in ensuring our clients an all-inclusive approach to their remodeling and custom home building needs,” comments Sean Cutting, President of Cutting Edge Homes. “We know that our clients’ time is valuable, and this is yet another way we make the design and construction process easier and more satisfying for them. It also opens up an entirely new arena for Cutting Edge where we can offer interior design as a stand alone service where needed.”

Cutting Edge Homes Architects + Builders is an award-winning all-inclusive boutique firm, priding itself on an approach that is unique and personal to each client.  Cutting Edge’s design philosophy is anchored on listening and collaborating with clients, understanding their vision and then transcending it with the utmost in creativity, functionality, and ingenuity to create a truly inspired design where every single detail matters. Cutting Edge provides single source accountability, carefully guiding clients through every step of the process, from site evaluation and permitting to architecture, construction, landscaping and interior design.  More information can be found online at

MEDIA CONTACT: Fusco & Four – 617.363.0405



MAIA Alum working on BPL Re-design

MAIA alum Alison Buckley, currently working at Darlow Christ Architects, has been supporting the re-design for the Boston Public Library’s Johnson building, which was recently featured in the Boston Globe:

The plan, part of the venerable institution’s bid to become more of a public space, will transform the first floor of the Johnson Building into an all-day cafe and WGBH satellite studio. The setup will allow pedestrians to watch live television and radio broadcasts through windows on Boylston and Exeter streets, in a Boston version of the street-level studio in New York’s Rockefeller Center for the “Today” show.

The plan, approved by the library’s board of trustees Tuesday, is part of a $78 million renovation to improve the appearance and functionality of the building, seen by many as uninspiring. The space is expected to open next summer.

“We believe this will help animate the space and provide a gathering spot for patrons of the library, as well as draw people into the Johnson Building,” said David Leonard, the library’s interim president.

Under the direction of Peter Darlow, the main principal of DCA, Alison developed the rendering of the Newsfeed Cafe that’s in the article.

An early rendering of the Newsfeed Café at the Boston Public Library.

An early rendering of the Newsfeed Café at the Boston Public Library.

You can read the rest of the article HERE.

BFA grad Renee Nassar at MIT’s Open Style Lab

Renee Nassar (BFA '14, left) and Diana Smith (right) with their finished protective headgear prototype.

Renee Nassar (BFA ’14, left) and Diana Smith (right) with their finished protective headgear prototype.

NESAD BFA alum Renee Nassar, along with her teammate, BU student Diana Smith, recently participated in the Massachusetts Institute of Technology’s Open Style Lab, whose mission is to create clothes and accessories for clients in the community with disabilities.

Smith and Nassar were asked to design the protective headgear for a school just west of Boston serving children with autism. Last year Open Style Lab had created armbands for the school’s faculty to be worn under long-sleeve shirts to protect against a student trying to bite them. Faculty members were already wearing traditional baseball batting helmets for protection, and this year the school asked the lab to come up with something that would appear less threatening and be more comfortable.

During the 10 week program, Renee and her partner had $500 to develop a prototype of the headgear, which was designed to look similar to a baseball cap and was dubbed they EduCap.

A sketch of an early draft of Smith and Nassar’s EduCap.

A sketch of an early draft of Smith and Nassar’s EduCap.

You can read more about Renee and Diana’s project HERE.

NESAD Alum in the Boston Globe!

MAIA alum Leah Cantor is mentioned in today’s Boston Globe style section!

Michael J. Lee/Globe Staff

Michael J. Lee/Globe Staff

When Waltham interior designer Leah Cantor was tapped by Boston’s Room to Dream Foundation to make over the bedroom of a chronically ill 14-year-old boy named Sean, she jumped at the opportunity. “It was an honor and a thrill,” says Cantor.

After meeting with Sean (Room to Dream does not release last names of families it serves) and his family, Cantor collaborated with interior designer Shalini Sookar to transform the small room with red walls and heavy drapes into a light and airy space with ample area to display Sean’s sports memorabilia. The high school freshman also has room to hang out with his friends, and focus on schoolwork.

“A lot of makeovers for kids’ rooms tend to be based around a theme,” says Cantor. “We didn’t want to do that here — kids’ tastes and loves change over time. We designed something more sophisticated, a space that Sean could grow into.”


Check out the rest of the story here. Well done, Leah!

Alumni News – Marissa E. Borst

NESAD Alumnus, Marissa Borst, has been selected by the Suffolk University Alumni Association and members of our Young Alumni Advisory Group (YAAG) as a recipient of our inaugural 10 Under 10 Award. The “10 Under 10” awards were created to recognize and celebrate young alumni of the past decade who have enjoyed major professional success, made a big difference in his or her community, or have been loyal supporters of Suffolk University.

Nominated by classmate Greg Jones, Suffolk was impressed by Marissa’s company and creativity at All’s Well That Ends Well Designs, as well work done with FACETS, giving back to the community. Entrepreneurship and community service are two very important themes at Suffolk University, and Marissa embodies both so eloquently, making an ideal recipient of this award.

Alumni News – Lisa T. Buyuk

Lisa Buyuk is a NESAD Alumn in the MA Interior Design program and has been helping clients create their dream spaces since 1995.  Since NESAD, Lisa worked for two nationally recognized firms and in 2002, Lisa launched her own company, Buyuk Interiors. She specializes in residential interior design and decoration.   Recently, Lisa gained recognition for her thoughtful and beautiful work.  In Fall 2011, ASID New England featured Lisa on the front cover and a 2 page article in their newsletter.

Also, Congratulations to Lisa for passing the NCIDQ exam.



Meet the Career Alumni Panel

Career Design Services and NESAD recently hosted an Alumni Panel to talk to students about the field of Interior Design and to answer some of their questions about starting a career in this field.
Alumni are a fantastic resource when looking for a job.   Below are the profiles of the three NESAD Alumni who presented their work in November.    It is very inspiring to see how successful some of our NESAD Graduates have become!

photo courtesy of Stephanie Rossi

Stephanie Rossi, Allied ASID
Stephanie Rossi received her BFA in Interior Design from the New England School of Art & Design at Suffolk University and launched Spazio Rosso after six years working with a Boston-based interior designer. As an Allied Member of ASID, she has designed superior interior residential and commercial spaces for nearly a decade, pushing traditional concepts of space while always maintaining a live, synchronistic relationship between her clients and her work.
“Architecture and interiors are cohabitants. Designing a space isn’t just about fabrics and paint colors; it is about relationships – both spatial and material. They can be harmonious or discordant, depending on the person(s). My role is to create an amazing space through the development of the relationships within the project itself as well as the evolving dynamic that connects my client to our shared vision. ‘Design without limitations’ has become my mantra: if you keep an open mind, the design will ‘be.’

photo courtesy of Krista Iannoni

Krista Iannoni
Krista attended the University of Vermont where she graduated in 2007 with a double major in Political Science and Studio Art.  Shortly following graduation, she returned to school at NESAD as a full time Interior Design Graduate student.  While in school, Krista interned at Silverman Trykowski Associates, a small commercial firm, for 3 years.  Upon completing her Master of Art in Interior Design degree in September 2010, she began full-time employment as a Designer at the same firm.  In September 2011, she joined Bergmeyer Associates as a Designer, and currently works on the TD Bank Team that is working on across the board renovations to their stores as well as completing several ground-up locations throughout New England.  Bergmeyer is an award winning design firm specializing in retail, restaurant, and workplace design.

photo courtesy of Senofer Mendoza

Senofer Mendoza, LEED AP, Allied ASID
Senofer Mendoza, LEED AP, Allied ASID, has carved out a career for herself as a hospitality designer to watch.  Beginning her career at Parker Torres Design in Wayland, Massachusetts, a noted high-end hospitality firm, she recently joined Group One Partners in Boston as an Interior Designer.  She holds a master’s degree in Interior Design from Suffolk University where she was awarded for academic excellence.  Committed to sustainable design practices and creating unique user experiences, her background in theatrical design has given her a distinctive, client-focused take on creating branded environments.

Medical Construction and Design: Carole Kassir-Garcia’s Hospital Design

Alumni Carole-Kassir designed the Swedish Medical Center in Issaquah, WA, a project that took over 2 years of her life and a lot of hard work.  She was featured in a magazine article about Carole Kassir-Garcia’s hospital design, which won the IIDA INawards, Northern Pacific Chapter, for Healthcare.

Below are some pictures:  Photos Courtesy of Carole-Kassir