About Southern Rust Furniture

Southern Rust Furniture is a small, family-owned business located just outside Charlotte, North Carolina.  Our business began in 2015 after noticing a need in the furniture world for quality industrial-style furniture.  We decided to add wood accents, to bring a rustic feel to the pieces.  Our 4 person team works together in all aspects, to bring your vision to life.

Our Team

John - The Visionary

John is the owner and mastermind behind it all. His background is in welding, and worked in the custom motorcycle business for many years. The move to furniture was seamless, as it utilizes the same aspects of taking a design and using his skills to make that piece come to life before your eyes. He has the uncanny ability to see your piece as a 3D design, spinning in his head before he even begins to build a thing. He focuses on the super custom pieces in the welding shop and spearheads the cutting process in the wood shop.

Nicole - Management & Craft Expert

I (Nicole) handle all the administrative duties. You'll be communicating directly with me about your design, and I'll work closely with you to ensure every detail meets your expectations. My responsibilities include ordering, invoicing, and scheduling shipments, as well as maintaining order within our team. Beyond these tasks, I contribute to the wood shop, particularly during the finishing process. There, I address any blemishes or imperfections in the wood and perform the final sanding, staining, and sealing to perfect all the wooden elements of your pieces.

Liza - Lead Welder

Liza is our go-to person in the welding shop. She has learned the art of welding from John. Liza handles most of the cutting of the steel and does a majority of the welding on desks and cabinets. She works with John on assembly and is the lead pallet wrapper.

Skeeter - Wood Fabrication Specialist

Skeeter is John’s right-hand person in the wood shop. Not only does she personally select and cut each board to length for every build, but she also assists John in running every piece of wood through the table saw. On her own, she takes charge of gluing and clamping each piece. She even lends a hand in the welding shop when needed.

The Rest of the Family

We also have 4 other children. Andrew works on repairing and replacing industrial valves. Ethan is our social media man. Another is Wyatt, who would rather be riding his 4-wheeler and shooting his BB gun. Merrick likes to run the magnet over the shop floor to pick up all the metal scraps. He even found a magnetic meteorite in our yard while picking up scraps in front of the shop.

Our goal is to redefine comfort and style for modern living spaces, merging the raw beauty of rustic industrial design with the warmth of family craftsmanship.

That’s the very essence of the Southern Rust experience!

Our Process

One of the things we like to pride ourselves on here at Southern Rust Furniture is the fact that we do EVERYTHING in-house.


Sourcing Materials

Steel: Our steel is purchased in bulk from a local supplier and cut specifically for your piece. Once welded in place, each piece is cleaned and then coated in a protective coating to prevent rust.

Wood: The wood we use on most pieces is sourced from a local supplier. We stay away from the big box stores, as we like to support the small business in our local area.


Crafting Your Piece

Once back in our shop, each piece undergoes a meticulous process:

  • Planning to ensure all pieces are the same thickness.
  • Cutting the correct lengths and straight edges on each side.
  • Gluing pieces together to form one cohesive piece.
  • Fixing any imperfections in the wood.
  • Sanding multiple times for a smooth finish.

Staining and then coating with multiple layers of protective coating.



We use high-quality cabinet-grade plywood to hand-make each drawer individually, facing each drawer with the same species of wood your top is made from. This ensures your piece comes together seamlessly, equipped with high-quality ball-bearing drawer glides.


Assembly and Shipping

  • Final Assembly: John and Liza ensure everything fits together perfectly.
  • Custom Pallets: Skeeter determines the size pallet needed for your piece, builds it herself, and along with Liza, ensures your piece is wrapped up tightly and protected for its journey.
  • Shipping: Once secured to a pallet, we load your piece onto a freight truck. Nicole will then send you all the tracking information and delivery instructions.

Once delivered, we are always just a phone call away should any questions arise.

From beginning to end, our four sets of hands are on every single aspect of your build.  We love the flexibility it provides you, the customer.  We can make things fit in tight spaces, we can add extra shelving, and we can turn your chicken scratch sketch on a napkin into a piece you will cherish for years to come.

More About Us

What are we doing when we aren’t building your dream pieces? We are building a dream of our own.  All of our lives, John and I have thought that we were born in the wrong era.  We enjoy the simpler things in life. We have a small “homestead” we are always working on and improving.  We raise pigs and chickens to supplement our grocery bill.  So when John isn’t building furniture, he’s busy building fences, chicken coops, and shelters for animals.  Nicole is an avid gardener, who grows and preserves a lot of the produce we eat.  Her garden grows bigger every year! We love knowing exactly where our food comes from.  Nicole also LOVES to cook!  She bakes all of our bread and goodies from scratch, even grinding the flour from organic wheat berries.  

Liza and Skeeter both attend online private school, so along with working with us, they get all their schoolwork done on a daily basis. Both are accomplished cooks in their own right. There are many nights when they take over making dinner. They both are self-taught crocheters. Liza likes to make stuffed animals, and Skeeters likes to make blankets, pillows, and sweaters.

Andrew travels for his work a lot, but when he’s home he enjoys hanging out with his friends.

Ethan chose public school as his route, so he spent his days at school. He is an avid bike rider and skateboarder. You can always find him building a ramp somewhere.

Wyatt and Merrick are also enrolled in public school, but when they are home, just enjoy farm life. They love 4-wheelers, dirt bikes, shooting BB guns, wandering in the woods, and just enjoying time outside.  

One thing we really love doing as a family is to travel the nation going to heavy metal music festivals.  We pack everything we need for a week and camp out at the festival.  We love the time it gives us as a family, the people we meet along the way, and the memories we make.