White worked with the building's architect, William Henry Miller, to design a cruciform (cross-shaped) room lined with three tiers of book stacks. Miller was the first student of architecture at Cornell (he attended 1868-70, but did not graduate), and had a major hand in designing White's home. Miller and White took the iron scrollwork used elsewhere in Uris Library as a decorative element and featured it as a significant stylistic theme throughout the room. The two upper levels and crosswalks, balconies, and jutting corbels are covered in wrought iron scrollwork, forming an open framework for the room's main feature: its books. The room seems uplifted and buttressed by its thousands of books, its metalwork exposing, rather than guarding them. Spiral staircases in the corners are almost hidden accesses to the upper tiers. Originally, the wood floors were left bare, but carpeting was later added to dampen noise levels. For many years, the carpet was deep green, but in the 1980s, it was replaced with the ruby red color that adds a jewel-like glow to the room.