Designing with Dompierre
Just over a decade ago, passersby driving on Roosevelt Boulevard in Upper Township wouldn’t even glance twice at the large former home that sat facing the busy road. It wasn’t an eyesore, exactly, but it wasn’t anything that might catch your attention—until 2015, when Victor Dompierre and Jack Griffin opened Dompierre, a full-service interior design showroom.
Suddenly, the worn-out building had an all-new appeal, with a stunning and sunny pale-yellow façade, beautiful green roofing, and magazine-worthy landscaping. The building didn’t just get a facelift; it was completely transformed into an eye-catching stunner. And that’s just the outside.
Inside the Dompierre Showroom, visitors can walk through room after room chock full of design inspiration. And while it’s certainly striking, Dompierre Showroom is more than a Pinterest inspiration board come to life. As an interior design showroom, Dompierre offers consultation, a wide variety of fabrics and trims, boutique furniture, wallpaper, unique lighting, accessories, artwork, and wall décor. It’s a valuable resource for those working in design as well as for homeowners who are shopping for themselves or need an assist from a professional interior designer.
The showroom has been so valuable in fact, that in August 2022, a workroom was established just a short walk down the street on Norwood Road. This state-of-the-art facility, like the showroom, required an extensive amount of work to be habitable as well as visually appealing. Griffin and Dompierre transformed the former firehouse, which was constructed in 1948 and most recently housed a plumbing company, into a 3500-square foot workroom.
In a nod to the past—and the history of the building—Griffin and Dompierre took great strides to keep some original facets of the building. For instance, their two functioning and decorative sliding barn doors were repurposed from reclaimed ceiling wood.
We spoke with Barbara Murphy-Leary, Brand Manager of Dompierre Showroom & Workroom about the expansion and what it means for customers.
Q: What exactly is the workroom and how does it differ from the showroom?
Though Victor Dompierre used to do fabricating within the confines of the showroom, albeit in the bottom floor of the structure, he outgrew the space. Now, the two buildings each serve a distinct purpose—the Showroom is for customers, whereas the Workroom is strictly a workspace for fabricating.
“Due to the increased demand for custom fabrications and workspace, [Victor Dompierre and Jack Griffin] purchased the property and started renovating the existing structure and grounds in 2020,” says Murphy-Leary. “It was completed in August 2022.”
Rather than operating as an inspiration station for customers like the Showroom, the Workroom manufactures and installs custom fabrications, specializing in window treatments, blinds, shutters, shades, roller shades, motorization, upholstery, pillows, banquettes, headboards, and bedding. “This larger space has allowed us to add additional work talent and the ability to freely construct original designs in greater capacity,” said Victor Dompierre, who has been fabricating custom window and home fashions for nearly 25 years. These are about as far as you can get from mass produced products. Rather, the focus is on craftsmanship, functionality, and of course, beauty.
“Since it is a custom workroom, each product is distinctive and has its own style requirements,” says Murphy-Leary. “There is no mass production. Each project is unique and designed for a purpose, a true design solution.”
Q: Are there certain materials, trends or styles that take precedence here at the shore?
With a local and regional client base, location is the common thread between customers. From there, however, preference and needs differ, and as custom fabricators, the Dompierre Workroom offers an approach that is both deliberate and attentive. Each request is considered from the perspective and needs of the client.
“Frequent client concerns center on privacy, blackout and light filtering capabilities, and motorization needs,” says Murphy-Leary of blind fabric selection. “We provide thoughtful fabric and design options that will work best for their spaces and their needs.”
It’s not just design. It’s design that, while being beautiful and functional, can also help solve a problem. For instance, letting the outdoors in is a popular concept in shore homes. Unfortunately, that open feel can also be challenging regarding privacy, especially when homes are close together. Dompierre Workroom can
customize a solution.
“In this kitchen near a neighboring home (see photo), the carefully selected fabric on the cornice has a fresh garden pattern that adds color, style, and brings nature indoors to the room,” says Murphy-Leary. “The shutters can be easily controlled to create a more private experience while allowing the light to filter into the space. Designing and creating options that are beautiful and accommodate your lifestyle is a priority at Dompierre.”
“Whether bringing the outdoors in or simply utilizing nature-inspired elements in the home, nature continues to be an inspiration in design and elsewhere, particularly in beach homes. That means an uptick in organic materials—think marble, rattan, and wicker, along with a palette of earth tones including blue and green watercolors, which can bring a sense of tranquility into a home. “The benefits of biophilic design [affiliated with nature] fueled by the desire to experience the outdoors while being inside remains very popular,” says Murphy-Leary.
And though there are trends in design, they aren’t hard and fast rules. In fact, it’s quite the opposite. Lifestyle and preferences—in addition to comfort—reign supreme at Dompierre. “In this post-pandemic world, the emphasis in home interior design is comfort and creating an environment that brings peace of mind,” says Murphy-Leary. “Now more than ever, people are investing in their homes and are rethinking how they use spaces in it. Traditional areas are being reimagined and used in ways that accommodate the needs of families. Whether turning a bedroom into a home office, or a pantry into a coffee station, our desire for well-being and ways to make our lives simpler is on the rise.”
“Trends are a guide,” she added. “The bottom line is to create a space that reflects your personal style and one that makes you comfortable.” ν