An Interview with Gerald Pomeroy, Designer of the “Home for the Holidays” Balmoral Room


The “Home for the Holidays” exhibit—sponsored by Cumar Marble & Granite, the Over My Shoulder Foundation, Neiman Marcus, Boston Design Week, and New England Home magazine—features three gorgeous, unique living spaces decorated for the season and inspired by a royal residence. “Home for the Holidays” is the vision of Cumar’s own Dawn Carroll, who also serves as the Executive Director of the Over My Shoulder Foundation, a nonprofit organization that promotes mentorship in design. Each of the participating designers—Paula Daher, Eric Roseff, and Gerald Pomeroy—worked closely with a mentee on the project.

Celebrating his firm’s twentieth anniversary in 2015, Gerald Pomeroy specializes in elegant residential spaces with a personal touch. His design projects have been awarded the Bulfinch Award from the New England Chapter of the Institute of Classical Art & Architecture, among others, and have been featured in the pages of Design New England, New England Home magazine, and the Boston Globe. Cumar was able to chat with Pomeroy about his Balmoral Room in the “Home for the Holidays” exhibit as well as the experience of working with a mentee.


How would you describe your personal design philosophy?

I am a classicist, but clearly I have my eye on the 21st century, and as such, there are always modern elements to all of my projects. I believe this mix is what makes for truly elegant and timeless interiors.


What was the first design element you chose for your “Home for the Holidays” room?

Without question the breathtakingly beautiful de Gournay “La Chasse de Compiegne” mural. It was a wonderful starting point to a very special Balmoral space.


Which is your favorite design element in the room? Why?

That is a difficult question for I pride myself on always achieving seamless interiors that as a whole speak volumes. But in this case, the unexpected drop ceiling that became part of the architecture of the room to highlight and celebrate the hearth as well as our English gilt carriage lantern is without question a crowd pleaser.



Which do you think is the most unique element?

This may surprise your readers but I would have to say the simplicity of the room. When a design has all the important elements, i.e. beautiful things, wonderful scale and more than a few surprises, you don’t need much more. It then allows you to pull back, edit and let the room speak for itself.


What were the biggest challenges to this project?

I would have to say the ambitious time frame and still to be able to meet the standards I set for myself and for all of my projects was the biggest challenge.


Tell us about the experience of working closely with a mentee.

This is a subject I can chat about at length about. We always have, for the most part, an intern working in the office. Exposing them and bringing them along on the journey of the design process from start to finish, is something I enjoy immensely and find extremely rewarding. Home for the Holidays was no exception and was perhaps was one of the big reasons I participated. To have the opportunity to take Lauren Cozzi on this adventure, without question, made this experience all the more gratifying.

An Interview with Eric Roseff, Designer of the “Home for the Holidays” Winter Palace Room


The “Home for the Holidays” exhibit—sponsored by Cumar Marble & Granite, the Over My Shoulder Foundation, Neiman Marcus, Boston Design Week, and New England Home magazine—features three gorgeous, unique living spaces decorated for the season and inspired by a royal residence. “Home for the Holidays” is the vision of Cumar’s own Dawn Carroll, who also serves as the Executive Director of the Over My Shoulder Foundation, a nonprofit organization that promotes mentorship in design. Each of the participating designers—Paula Daher, Eric Roseff, and Gerald Pomeroy—worked closely with a mentee on the project.

Eric Roseff welcomed the challenge of a Winter Palace–themed room with open arms. Over the past fifteen years Roseff and his firm, Eric Roseff Designs, have become one of Greater Boston’s most sought-after interior designers, boasting projects as different as Montana’s Yellowstone Club and a residence at the Ritz Carlton. He also starred in a recent episode of HGTV’s “House Hunters Renovations.” Cumar got a chance to talk to Roseff about his experience with the “Home for the Holidays” exhibit.


How would you describe your personal design philosophy?

I believe that everyone deserves great design in their lives. I approach each project with a new and fresh outlook. While there are design principles that are always in play, such as scale and proportion, it is most important to me to constantly strive to create something new, something unique to the client and the project. No two people are alike, so no two interiors should look the same.


What was the first design element you chose for your “Home for the Holidays” room?

The first element I chose for my “Home for the Holidays” room was the rug, from Landry & Arcari. I knew I wanted something really large to fill the space, and truly ground it. I also wanted something that felt “palatial,” and that felt both traditional and contemporary at the same time. I kissed a lot of frogs before I found this rug!


100814neh052Which is your favorite design element in the room? Why?

Tough question … there are so many wonderful design elements in the room. I love the incredible piece of Amazonite stone over the fireplace, supplied and fabricated by Cumar, which we framed in a gilded frame. It shows how the stone itself truly is a piece of art.


Which do you think is the most unique element?

I think I would have to say the incredible Diamond White polished stone columns that flank the fireplace wall, and are lit from within with LED lights. They are so monumental, and regal, and definitely capture one’s attention, and draw you into the space.


What were the biggest challenges to this project?

The timeline was extremely accelerated on this project. Also the fact that the entire room had to be constructed from the ground up. This also included adding electrical to the space, and being certain the structure would support the weight of many of the elements, most notably all of the marble and stone-work. There were so many moving parts, different contractors plying their trades in the space at the same time. This is also what makes the process so invigorating and exciting. It was also important to me to make the space exciting, almost a bit theatrical. After all, this is Neiman Marcus and the holiday season all rolled into one exciting project! I did a lot of research on the Winter Palace, and it really was a riot of color, gilding, and ornateness. I love it!


Tell us about the experience of working closely with a mentee.

Working so closely with my mentee, Evie Hickey, was such a wonderful experience. It really brought things full circle. I thought back to the mentors who were there for me, who made such an impact in my life. I realized what a great responsibility it was for me to do my best to make the same type of impact on my mentee. In the process, I learned so much from her as well. It really is all about listening, sharing, patience, and truly being in the moment.

An Interview with Paula Daher, Designer of the “Home for the Holidays” Versailles Room

The “Home for the Holidays” exhibit—sponsored by Cumar Marble & Granite, the Over My Shoulder Foundation, Neiman Marcus, Boston Design Week, and New England Home magazine—features three gorgeous, unique living spaces decorated for the season and inspired by a royal residence. “Home for the Holidays” is the vision of Cumar’s own Dawn Carroll, who also serves as the Executive Director of the Over My Shoulder Foundation, a nonprofit organization that promotes mentorship in design. Each of the participating designers—Paula Daher, Eric Roseff, and Gerald Pomeroy—worked closely with a mentee on the project.

Recently, Cumar had the chance to chat with Paula Daher, founder and principle of Daher Interior Design. Since 1995 she and her team have designed elegant, stylish living spaces in Greater Boston and beyond. For “Home for the Holidays,” Daher teamed up with mentee Virginia Sherrer-Thoss to produce the stunning Versailles Room (pictured), on display at Neiman Marcus, Copley Place, through the new year.


How would you describe your personal design philosophy?

Scale and proportion are the foundation of any space I work on. Proportion and scale have everything to do with how a room is viewed and how it functions. Fabrics, colors, and textures play strongly into the scale of the room by helping to balance the overall field of vision. My personal aesthetic is that of simple elegance, uncluttered, with forms, shapes, and color harmoniously integrated.


What was the first design element you chose for your “Home for the Holidays” room?

Ah, the two antique chairs and settee were the first elements. My overall feel for the room was to have a modern interpretation of what Versailles would look like if created today. The shape of the two antique chairs with their round backs and simple tight-back interiors feels modern, yet the carved-wood detailing echoes the past. My inner visual was always to approach the room with the back of the chair, upholstered in an interesting way, framed by sumptuous curtains.

The Versailles Room fireplace by Cumar


Which is your favorite design element in the room? Why? 

The fireplace, with stone and fabrication by Cumar, is the most dramatic and awe-inspiring element in the room! The way the stone has been bonded into a mass, yet has softly curved lines and polished edges, allows it to visually carry the weight of being the center and star of the room!


Which do you think is the most unique element?

The beautiful painting by Luc Leestemaker brings vibrancy and personality to the room. The artist was so adept at bringing the viewer into his painting with color, blending, and abstract imagery. Each viewer sees something different, something personal.


What were the biggest challenges to this project?

An eight week timeframe from sketchpad to opening party was the greatest challenge. The build-out of a complete room—flooring, electrical, furnishings, all custom, all posing a great degree of technical difficulty—was an extraordinary feet. All of the artisans involved worked diligently, with many long nights and weekends, to make this room the success it is.


Tell us about the experience of working closely with a mentee.

How fun to be able to work on a complete project, in a short amount of time, and be able to show all of the tenets of interior design at the same time. The opportunity to show our mentee how hard work, collaboration, scheduling, flexibility—the ability to change a design plan if something either did not work or was unavailable—showed the true picture of what it takes to be successful in the world of interior design. Our mentee, Virginia Sherrer-Thoss, proved herself a valuable team member that was an integral part of the success of this project.


Photographs courtesy of Michael Lee.

“Home for the Holidays” Launches at Neiman Marcus

The Cumar team in the Winter Palace room.


A glamorous reception last Wednesday night kicked-off the “Home for the Holidays” exhibit at Neiman Marcus’ fabulous Copley Place location.

“I never thought in a million years that our little gift gallery could be transformed into three amazing royal residences,” said Daniel Kramer, Vice President and General Manager of Neiman Marcus Boston, in his opening remarks. New England Home publisher Kathy Bush-Dutton spoke next, echoing Kramer’s sentiment and crediting the three designers and their teams.

Tony Fusco, co-producer of “Home for the Holidays,” announced the schedule for Boston Design Week 2015, which takes place March 19–29 in Boston. He then put the spotlight squarely on Cumar’s own Dawn Carroll, who took the microphone to emphasize the vital importance of mentorship in the world of design and in this exhibit especially.

Dawn Carroll talks about mentoring.

“There’s no school for stone design,” Carroll said. “That’s why mentorship is so important to Cumar, and that was part of the reason I founded the Over My Shoulder Foundation. In mentorship, we act as good stewards for our industry and our society.”

To produce “Home for the Holidays,” three Boston designers were invited to re-imagine famous royal palaces, and each were asked to allow a mentee to contribute significantly to the vision and project.

The Versailles room, designed by Paula Daher and mentee Virginia Seherr-Thoss, offers the classic gold trim in perfect balance with the decidedly modern furniture. The finishing touch? A pair of Christmas trees that sparkle with silver and gold ornaments.

Intoxicating in its blend of comfort and style, Gerald Pomeroy and mentee Lauren Cozzi’s Balmoral room boasts green-and-white wall panels of British country scenes, tweedy wall-to-wall carpet, and a rustic lantern chandelier above the table.

In the Winter Palace, Eric Roseff and mentee Evie Hickey dazzle with deep blue walls, a mélange of richly-textured furniture—including green leather chairs and a lush blue sofa-in-the-round—as well as faux windows that face an array of mesmerizing portraits.

Cumar Marble and Granite provided magnificent pieces of stone art for each space, carved fireplaces, framed pieces of semi-precious stones—and something special in the Winter Palace: two gorgeous white natural quartzite columns, both back-lit for ambiance, resembling floor-to-ceiling icicles. Each piece is a stunning work of art.

“Home for the Holidays” can be visited in the home section of the Neiman Marcus store in Copley Place, Boston. The event will close in January 2015 with a mentoring gala sponsored by Cumar and the Over My Shoulder Foundation.

The Mentoring the Event of the Season!

by Dawn Carroll
Designer, Cumar Marble & Granite
Executive Director, Over My Shoulder Foundation

The Over My Shoulder Foundation is a nonprofit that focuses on encouraging and producing unique mentoring projects, and the upcoming “Home for the Holidays” event (co-conceived and co-sponsored by Cumar Marble & Granite) offered the perfect opportunity to do just that.

Boston Design Week invited celebrated Boston talent—Paula Daher, Eric Roseff, and Gerald Pomeroy—to do something they’re probably not used to doing: step (slightly) out of the spotlight. These top designers were asked to support and mentor three burgeoning designers in the conception of three holiday-themed home spaces in the gorgeous Neiman Marcus store at Copley Square, Boston.

This was no small feat. The schedule was aggressive, and the standards extremely high. The mentees—Virginia Seherr-Thos with Daher Interior Design; Evie Hickey with Eric Roseff Design; and Lauren Cozzi with Gerald Pomeroy—were challenged to create a beautiful home display area in one of the most luxurious department stores in the country. It’s a dream come true for anyone in the design world (including me) but for these up-and-coming designers it was also a daunting task.

Luckily, there were talented and careful mentors at the helm. Working with each team in my capacity as a Cumar stone designer, we transformed three blank spaces into amazing rooms that feature stunning contemporary and classic styles. Deadlines were met and refined tastes were satisfied because everyone adopted the mentoring mission of OMSF, wholly embraced by Cumar as well, of “Designing the Next Generation.”

When you mentor someone, you act as a good steward for our industry, for our society, and for future generations. But you also get something that’s totally mind-blowing in return, something that offers a lifetime of satisfaction: the euphoria that comes from having an impact in another person’s life.

Cumar Marble & Granite and the Over My Shoulder Foundation would like to thank everyone who made “Home for the Holidays” possible! We look forward to sharing more of the mentorship stories that blossomed from this fantastic project.

The grand opening event takes place on Wednesday, October 8. If you’re a member of the media and are interested in attending, please contact Annette Goubeaux at Neiman Marcus (, 617-585-6008).

Cumar Goes “Home for the Holidays” with Neiman Marcus

Cumar Marble and Granite, the Over My Shoulder Foundation, Neiman Marcus Boston, Boston Design Week 2015, and New England Home magazine have joined forces to present “Home for the Holidays,” special holiday showrooms featuring the work of three distinguished Boston-based interior design firms—Gerald Pomeroy Interiors, Eric Roseff Designs, and Daher Interior Design—to delight and inspire holiday décor in the home.

“Home for the Holidays” will be unveiled Wednesday evening, October 8 from 6:00-9:00 p.m. at Neiman Marcus Boston, kicking off Boston Design Week 2015 and the Neiman Marcus Boston Holiday season.

The event is free and open to the public. RSVP at

The three showrooms will be on view and open to the public, free of charge, from October 8 through January 31, 2015 during regular business hours in the Gift Galleries department of the famed luxury retailer located in Copley Place. The three custom-­designed rooms are each inspired by a royal residence: the Balmoral Estate in Scotland, Versailles in France, and the Winter Palace in Russia. Each master designer—Gerald Pomeroy, Eric Roseff, and Paula Daher—will mentor a junior member of their team to create the showroom, fully engaging their young partners in their design process.

Working with Gerald Pomeroy will be Lauren Cozzi, a graduate in Interior Design from Adrian College in Michigan. Eric Roseff has chosen Evie Hickey, a graduate of Syracuse University, as his mentee for the project. To work on the project with her, Paula Daher has selected Emily Condon, who received her M.A. in Interior Design from the New England School of Art and Design.

The showcase culminates in January 2015, National Mentor Month, when the Over My Shoulder Foundation and Cumar Marble & Granite will feature a mentoring recognition event open to the public and held on-site at Neiman Marcus Boston. Every item featured in the rooms may be purchased, and clients can shop directly from the Holiday Trees that feature ornaments curated to reflect the royal residences. During the course of the showcase’s run, the designers will host special events to speak to the design process.

“Home for the Holidays” is sponsored by Cumar Marble and Granite and New England Home magazine.



Cumar Presents the 2014 Designing the Next Generation Award to Yolanda Cellucci

On Friday evening, September 5, Cumar Marble & Granite was thrilled to present Boston design legend Yolanda Cellucci with the second annual “Designing the Next Generation Award” during a VIP reception at the Charles River Museum of Industry and Innovation.

This award spotlights the importance of mentoring across generations and cultural barriers—not only to the field of design, where it is vital, but also to the work of creating a better society. Founded by Cumar in 2013, in partnership with the Over My Shoulder Foundation, a mentoring-awareness nonprofit, the award’s inaugural recipient was Governor Michael Dukakis.

For more than four decades, Yolanda Cellucci has worked tirelessly to translate movie-star glamour from the runway and the red carpet to the streets of America. In that time, she has mentored more than her share of young women and men: fashion designers, interior designers, and local media fixtures—as well as a familiar face in the Cumar family.

Award-winning Cumar stone designer Dawn Carroll also serves as the Executive Director of the Over My Shoulder Foundation, and was particularly delighted to be presenting this award on Friday evening.

“Like so many young women, I launched my career at her store,” explains Carroll. “She ignited confidence in me that women could be powerful business leaders, glamorous wives, and nurturing mothers. Yolanda was a wonderful mentor.”

Friday night also marked the opening of “Yolanda: Innovative Fashion Icon; 50 Years of High Heels, Headpieces, and Haute Couture, ” an exhibit of high-fashion gowns that features an all-star lineup of twentieth century designers. Curated by Cellucci herself, the exhibit includes several items from her private collection.

Here are just a few scenes from the event, courtesy of photographer Jim Canole:

Dawn Carroll and YolandaCumar’s Dawn Carroll presents the award to Yolanda Cellucci

Dawn, YolandaYolanda Cellucci (L), Dawn Carroll (R), and Meghan Carroll (center)

Guests enjoy the collection, on display through November 30


Poet Marissa Ranahan opens the “Designing The Next Generation” evening event by reciting her poem, An Ode to a Mentor.

Poet Marissa Ranahan is a young vibrant writer for the Over My Shoulder Foundation (OMSF) and was the opening act at the Cumar Marble & Granite –OMSF event, “Designing the Next Generation”, on June 18th at the elegant Liberty Hotel in Boston, Massachusetts.


Angelo "Ivo" Cubi with his daughter, Carlotta Cubi

Patti Austin, Grammy winner and co-founder of the Over My Shoulder Foundation, honored with the 2010 inaugural MIDDIE Award, designed by Cumar

In the stone world, mentoring is the only way that the special craftsmanship has been able to live on from generation to generation. Growing up as the daughter of a 7th generation stone craftsman has been very inspiring. The passion that my father, Ivo Cubi, exudes everyday has brought him international recognition. In our house, a highlighter and a set of architectural blue prints were how we practiced coloring within the lines. No coloring books, just plans of hotel lobbies, elaborate offices, or luxury residences. When I joined the family business, it became obvious that my dad was mentoring me all along. To you [my father] Ivo, I say thank you from me, the entire team at Cumar, and the countless number of other people in the industry you have mentored over the years.  

Lastly I would like to thank Cumar mentee Patti Austin and Cumar employee Dawn Carroll for starting the Over My Shoulder Foundation and inspiring the MIDDIE-Mentors in Design awards- We are honored to be part of the Award that is hosted by Design New England magazine. Patti was given the 2010 inaugural MIDDIE award and we welcome you into the design industry. We wish you all the best with your transition from mentor in the music world to mentee in the design world.”  Carlotta Cubi


Mentoring is what keeps CUMAR Marble & Granite growing strong for eight generations so far; therefore it is no wonder that “Thank Your Mentor Day” was such a special occasion for them. Ivo and his team of talented employees worked together to shine light on this occasion by hosting a memorable reception in the showroom of Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams of Boston’s Back Bay. Among the aforementioned CUMAR’s dedicated circle is Dawn Carroll, who founded the national mentoring initiative, the Over My Shoulder Foundation, with Grammy Award winner Patti Austin.

The evening was filled with giving and receiving, and sharing of mentoring stories under a humming halo. Longtime mentors and speakers for the evening were welcomed onto the stage by CUMAR’s general manager, Dave Connor. Magic 106.7 Candy O’Terry‘s “…you get what you give” speech and Newton attorney Rick Dyer‘s breakthrough stories, captured the night with their inspiring words. Other prominent leaders from the music, legal, and design business communities including Jon Butcher, Charlie Farren, and Robin Lane were also present to celebrate and raise awareness of the impact of mentoring.

Patti Austin, a newcomer to the design industry and a musical legend, capped the evening by giving a special $10,000 scholarship to her mentee, Santana Roberts, as a broad token of thanks to all her new and former mentors; in fact, it was a touching surprise moment to all the attendees. Santana Roberts continues to push for her dream of becoming a singer with the strong support of her struggling middle class family and over five years of instruction under the wing of Patti Austin.

In Santana’s own words:

“A couple weeks ago I was invited to “­­­­­­­­­­­Thank you Mentor Day” hosted at Mitchell Gold + Bob Williams in Boston, Massachusetts.  I was asked to thank and introduce my mentor, Patti Austin.  I was excited to reunite with her once again and to share some time together. On January 25, 2012 I attended this much-anticipated event.  I walked in the building and stood before ornate modern furniture, delicious hors d’oeuvres and a room full of people who shared similar interests in making a difference.  There were designers and musicians and mentors and mentees.  The Over My Shoulder Foundation’s goal is to promote mentoring cross-generationally.  Watching everybody mingle, I realized that age is but a number, and mingling is just another word for sharing.  Halfway through the event, mingling was paused and the attention was focused on the speakers.  I was given the opportunity to be one of them.  Listening to the amazing stories they told really inspired me.  Suppressing my stage fright, I delivered my story of being mentored by Patti Austin and how she has motivated me throughout the years.  I finished my speech by introducing her transitioning into her side of the story.  Standing beside her made everything that has happened to me actually feel real in that moment.  Suddenly, she presented me with $10,000 towards Berklee!  I stood there, motionless as I began to cry tears of pure joy and gratefulness.”

With immense satisfaction and purpose for this event, CUMAR eagerly await their upcoming spring event on Designing the Next Generation with the message of  ” helping those who need a helping hand”. “We created the MIDDIE awards to recognize design professionals who share their time, expertise and wisdom with upcoming generations of designers. It is through a personal commitment and focus on others that the magic occurs”, said Connor, “We are putting forth the challenge and call for nominations for the 2012 MIDDIES today!”