Success By Design

Owning and operating a business may seem like a daunting task to many people, but Misty and Bobby Dennis tackle it head on, times two. She is an interior designer and owner of Black Door Interior Design Studio, specializing in residential remodels and new construction design. Together, they own and operate MidiCi-The Neapolitan Pizza Company, which is a new restaurant in the Pinnacle Hills Promenade area in Rogers. They each credit their past job experiences with providing them with important skills to help them in the process of becoming self-employed.

Misty attended the University of Arkansas, where she studied interior design. Upon graduating, she went to work at Julie Wait Designs, where she got her start in residential and commercial remodeling and design. Black Door Interior Design Studio is the result of the skills that Misty learned early in her career.

Taking a space that isn’t very functional and making it work better for her clients is what Misty enjoys about her job. She can often be found working on commercial or residential remodels, or even on new construction designs. “Here lately it’s a lot more remodeling…like kitchen and bathroom design, and full house. Like, tear your house apart and make your client move out,” she explains.

When asked what made her want to start her own business, Misty recalls her past employment. After trying different types of work, and spending some time doing freelance jobs, she knew what she wanted. “I love collaborating with people and getting to know different people,” she says. In our area, Misty has seen the number of people buying homes in established neighborhoods increase, which leads to more opportunities for remodeling. She works to help her clients reinvent those spaces to meet their particular needs. “It’s amazing what you can turn a space into,” Misty says. “You don’t have to spend a ton of money to do a facelift,” she adds.

While she does enjoy her work, it is not without a few challenges for Misty. She admits that the administrative side of her business is where she struggles. In addition to being the designer, she is the accountant, bookkeeper, secretary and marketing director for her business, which can be overwhelming for a staff of one. She realizes that it takes concentrated effort to make time for the tasks that she enjoys the least.

In the time that she’s owned Black Door, Misty says she has learned a lot. She’s been able to create her own system of double checking her notes to make sure there are no mistakes in her supply orders. She has also learned to call on other professionals in the building and design community to help her and give her advice on everything from materials, flooring, wallpaper, furnishings and more. “Not everything is going to work, even though you have some cool concepts,” she notes.

Find out more about Misty Dennis and Black Door Interior Design Studio by visiting Stay tuned for the next issue of Backstory 49 for part two of this story, where we hear from Bobby Dennis and learn how this dynamic duo manages two Northwest Arkansas businesses.

Click image above to listen to Misty Dennis’ Interview