Happiness is Home Made

Our love for building, design, and reclaiming “what once was” has been a family affair for generations leading us to grow a business specializing in custom carpentry and home restoration. We worked in this passion for over 10 years, and although small dwelling builds and conversions were always part of our business, like many, we became smitten with “tiny” spaces in more recent years.

In, 2014, we were honored to sponsor, host, and mentor our hometown friend’s (now the worlds most traveled) tiny house build and…well, the rest is history! The subsequent redirection of our business was a true “blessing in disguise” not only for our staff but for our families. The idea of simpler living promised in the tiny home movement was the work lifestyle change we had desperately been searching for. Building tiny home RVs and creating unique spaces allows us to provide the dedication and craftsmanship we pride ourselves on and now, in a more refined venue. We came to the tiny movement as experienced builders, but also as folks that understand the importance of home, family, and “less is more”.

We are incredibly honored and grateful to spend our days together designing and constructing practical spaces for others. “Going tiny” has allowed our family to work from our farm doing what we love most. -Building, growing, and sharing “home” with others. This movement of builders, dwellers, and enthusiasts is filled with contagious kindness and encouragement that is refreshing in this day and time. For that reason, we have gathered a group of designers, carpenters, licensed tradesman, RV techs, and skilled folks who share a passion for their trade but also for this movement. Our mission as a family and a group of community builders is to demonstrate our love and craft in each project as well as pass these homes, know-how, and the knowledge of “what matters most” on to the next generation.

 

Our Folks

Tom Elsner

Co-founder, Lead Carpenter

Tom began his professional career in the North Carolina furniture industry working in fabrication, showroom design, and eventually landing as a buyer at the International Home Furnishings Market. After apprenticing with his late grandfather, a master carpenter, Tom began working in carpentry full time building intricate interior pieces and decking for large custom homes. In 2001, along with Johanna, they began “flipping” their first home. “We were instantly hooked on reclaiming something that seemed forgotten and making it beautiful again.” In 2014, their friends (now the worlds most traveled tiny house), popped the big “tiny” question, “Will you help us build a tiny house?” and the rest is history. Tom’s days are now filled with hand drafting framing plans (his preferred method) and overseeing the construction of every Perch & Nest tiny home. “These are our babies. We hate to see them go but love to see something we love so much loved by others.” When Tom’s not building tiny, he (still) enjoys spending free time tinkering in his wood shop, restoring their 125-year-old farmhouse, and crafting and throwing the football with the kids.

Johanna Elsner

Co-founder, Lead Designer

Hailing from a 15+ year career in both public accounting and personal organization, Johanna also brings a past of house flipping, thrift store shopping, crafting, and reclaiming things “destined for the dump” to the tiny table. (And not to mention, she went to Culinary School and holds a Hospitality degree!) As Perch & Nest’s lead designer and project manager, Johanna understands what it takes to achieve practical design along with practical budgeting. “Designing tiny brings everything we love into one venue. Every day feels like a coffee date sharing ideas with friends. I can’t see us doing anything else!” When Johanna’s not designing small spaces or managing the Perch & Nest Airbnb fleet, she’s mom-ing, cooking, raising chickens or snuggling their potbelly pig, and overseeing the restoration of the Elsner’s 1894 farmhouse.