Father son team recognized for building tiny houses
UNITYVILLE – “My husband never stops thinking of ideas,” said Carol Troisi as she surveyed the interior of their custom made home that rests on ten acres among the hills of Jordan Township. “They never stop flowing,” she added.
Her husband Aaron Troisi and son, Nick Troisi are articulate craftsmen. Aaron Troisi is a fine woodworker, a crafter and has been his entire life according to Carol, and he has taught some skills to his son who has recently joined his father in completing their first tiny house.
This hobby has turned into “an international splash” said Nick for they are now part of the “Tiny House Movement.” They call themselves the ‘Unknown Craftsmen’ and they can do many things when it comes to woodwork and their attention to detail. Much of their work is hand carved not using modern tools.
The accomplished builders were featured as “Builders of the Month” in the August-September edition of Tiny House Magazine.
Both Aaron and Nick are employed full time and never thought their hobby would take off to such a noticable level. “It’s great to get such attention for our first tiny house,” said Nick who helped with much of the design. Everything in the house is custom made.
Through word of mouth, a resident from Danville approached the two men to build a caravan house so that she could move it to upper state New York. With self-sufficiency in mind, the duo crafted a “gypsy-style” home on a trailer for Tania Myren. It was complete with a curved roof, custom woodwork and even round windows. The front door has a door within a door as Nick pointed out from an array of digital photos on Aaron’s laptop.
“People want to see a model,” said Aaron, “and this model shows white pine siding and cedar shingles. Custom windows are our specialty.” The model shows curved doors with inset opening windows, screened and sealed. It also features custom cabinetry, a restructured foundation and custom flooring. They also built a mahogany storage staircase that leads to a loft and a live-edge maple desk. For lighting, there are 8 wooden sconces powered with LED lights into the arc of the ceiling.
The new tiny house is complete with all hand done features from floor to ceiling. “Even the countertops came from stumps from an old apricot tree,” replied the craftsmen. Aaron said about 5 years ago they cut down the tree and threw the stumps into a pile thinking some day they will be recyled for something useful.
The working father and son team do most of their work in the summers when they have more time. Nick Troisi is employed at Bloomsburg University and graduated with a fine arts degree as a ceramic artist. He has worked twelve years with the Bloomsburg Theatre Ensemble in set design. “I have met a ton of great designers there,” Nick added. “It was always something new, and not doing the same thing over and over.”
Aaron Troisi is a full time teacher in Lewisburg with a masters degree in education. Their goal is to build one house per summer. The Troisi men are currently working on their second tiny house at their home shop in Unityville. Much interest has been generated from the magazine article that quoted the men as “high end artistic builders.” Also YouTube has created an interest. “No one else out there is doing what you’re doing,” said the article from Tiny House Magazine.
The Troisis began their projects together in 2004 working on small objects such as coffee tables and benches. “We love sharing our skills,” said Aaron. They are contacted often for “do it yourself projects”, and they offer consulting services. They use high end, eco-friendly materials matching hard woods and soft woods harmoniously. They used repurposed barn beams and raw-cut the boards and milled themselves. They are open to the artistry and spontaneity of the craft and have become part of a huge network of the “Tiny House Movement.”
“It shows that people really do love unique homes with great style, which is what we love to build.”