January 22, 2021

NEDC CEO David Supple’s interview with Zandra Zuraw of the Style Matters Podcast

Last week I had the distinctly enjoyable experience of sitting down with Zandra Zuraw of the Style Matters Podcast to discuss the true role of the Architect throughout history and how this role relates to a common question of today amongst clients — do I need an Architect or a Builder? 

This question is a common one among clients and friends who approach me to get my advice prior to embarking on a major home remodel.

The simple answer is… simple but not immediately evident.

My answer is this: when approaching a major home remodel in Boston (or really anywhere), what one needs is an Architect — in the actual role of Master Builder, as is the Architect’s heritage and true role throughout history. Meaning an Architect who is trained as an expert builder and can thus plan with reality, cost efficiency, and every aspect of project execution in mind — and then actually execute these plans with full accountability.

Unfortunately, such Architect/Master Builders are extremely hard to come by today. Yet for thousands of years they were the norm. 

What happened?

The reality in this day and age is that such professionals are extremely hard to find as the vast majority of Architects are immersed in the realm of design with minimal actual building experience or know-how. Conversely, many builders do just that — they build and are not concerned with design, planning, or budgeting as it would relate to the project as a whole.

The result is a fractured industry, change orders, frequent budgetary overspends due to impractical planning, and an abundance of client stress points, disservice, and dissatisfaction.

I would ultimately fault neither Architect or Builder as the answer actually lies in the mid 1800s in the arbitrary and ultimately destructive fracture of the Master Builder and separation of the industry as a whole into two distinct camps — Architects and Builders. Prior to this point, and for thousands of years, these roles had been one — the Master Builder or Architect. I have researched this in depth and was personally amazed at what I found… I cover this in the interview with Zandra and in further detail in a book I have written and will be releasing later this year (along with a children’s book as well!).

Zandra is a knowledgeable, lively, and engaging host with whom it was a pleasure to have this valuable discussion, which we hope is of value for those embarking on the journey of remodeling their home.


Here is the Style Matters Podcast Overview

“Style Matters is all about the substance behind developing a personal style in your home and surrounding yourself with beauty in a way that is meaningful. We interview top stylists, designers, artisans and tastemakers both nationally and internationally about why style matters to them. The guests we interview each week inspire us creatively, and give us insight into why the art of homemaking is so powerful. To continue the conversation on why style matters, sign up for our monthly newsletter, packed with photos, stories, tips and resources, at www.littleyellowcouch.com


Style Matters Podcast Episode Introduction

“David Supple is the founder and CEO of New England Design & Construction. Schooled in architecture and trained in carpentry, David is about to explain how the profession of architecture has come to be and how it has estranged itself from its roots where craftsmanship and design went hand in hand. Now, David has a great personality, so he’s very entertaining and makes history interesting. But if history isn’t your thing, keep listening because we also talk about another of his passions, which is sustainability and he’s got a practical tip that I’ve never heard of that should probably top your list if you’re prioritizing eco-friendly practices in your home.”

Read the Interview Transcript here on the Little Yellow Couch Blog



Listen to the Podcast 


Interested in your thoughts and feedback — enjoy!




Published January 22, 2021 | By

Comments are closed here.