Now that you’ve had a chance to walk through the early stages of my design process (known around here as “Project Discovery”), we’re moving forward with an inside look at Phase II + III. Think presentations, collaborations, organization, and everything in between. Whether you’re somehow familiar with the world of design or consider it brand new territory, I hope this post series helps educate and inspire as you begin to navigate the process.

On today’s agenda, I’ll be outlining everything that goes into research, design, and presentation, plus all the moving parts behind project management and procurement. We’ve got a whole lot of ground to cover, but I promise we’ll have some fun along the way.

Phase II + III of my interior design process: Design + Project Management - J.Miller Interiors, Minneapolis


With phase one in the books, we’re set to move forward with the contract and retainer fee. Once all the i’s are dotted and t’s are crossed, then the real fun officially begins. During this phase, we’ll work to hone the details of the design concept as we dive into all things research and development. You’ll complete a thorough design questionnaire, collaborate on private Pinterest boards, and we’ll set a meeting to discuss the plans with detailed floor plans in hand.

Next, we work towards specifying and sourcing, which includes pricing out every item—and I do mean every item—we plan to purchase. From furniture to fixtures to finishes, we’ll leave no detail left untouched with a clear design vision guiding each decision. As another important part of the process, we’ll collaborate with a trusted network of contractors for any necessary project components and coordinate what’s known as a “trade’s day” to gather estimates for both materials and labor costs.

Once everything is carefully worked through, we’ll sit down in your home to unveil the full design plan. During this presentation, you’ll have the opportunity to review every element of your custom project, see and touch samples, and collaborate on any revisions as needed.

Modern, moody entryway design by Minneapolis Interior Design Studio J.Miller Interiors


After final approval of the design plan is received, you can breathe a deep sigh of relief as I take it all from here. I’ll handle the administrative work of purchasing, tracking, and ensuring each product is shipped to an off-site warehouse for inspection. This is an essential step to ensuring no damaged or defective pieces are brought into your home during the white glove delivery process on install day.

In addition to managing items, I’ll provide ongoing site visits and collaboration with your contractor throughout construction to ensure each detail comes together seamlessly.

Moody, layered girls' bedroom with deer sculpture and kids artwork

Now that you’ve got a grasp on the behind-the-scenes design process, next up is when all the puzzle pieces come together—install day! Keep an eye out for the last (and perhaps most exciting!) post of the series to see how a design project finally comes to life.

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