3 ways to make your camper feel like home

Whether you have completely renovated a camper or have one ready to go, personal touches are what make your adventure mobile feel like home. We chose to start with a camper that was already finished out so that we could focus solely on cosmetic updates. This was mostly due to time. While we first looked at building out a camper from an empty shell, we soon realized we just didn’t have the time to commit to it. We also found that most people don’t! If you don’t have a ton of free time to give to your camper a makeover, don’t worry, Im going to walk you through 3 projects that helped take our camper from drab to fab and didn’t steal a huge amount of our time or money!

1. Painting the interior

Like a house, you want to have your own personality shine through. It was important to us that we had a camper that felt happy and playful. Someplace that made us smile even on a bad or rainy day. For us, that meant making the inside brighter by painting it white. The biggest thing you need to focus on when it comes to painting is prepping! If you take your time and make sure to do this properly it will make the actual painting go smoothly and save you from having to redo areas. The area we painted was made out of Lauan wood which is a very thin plywood. A very gentle sanding is all you need. After that, we used blue tape to protect light switches and any where we did not want painted. Once you are ready to paint start with a primer.

We went up to our local Sherwin Williams and they helped us get the paint we needed. I would recommend a low sheen finish, such as a satin or flat. We went with an eggshell finish. Low sheen finishes will be much more forgiving to imperfections than a high gloss or reflective finish. We also chose to have an accent color (red, of course!) on our kitchen cabinets to give a bright pop of color.

2. Backsplash

Adding a backsplash to the kitchen or bathroom area of your camper is such an easy way to make a huge change to the whole feel. Not only can you make a dramatic impact this way, but it is also affordable and can be done in an afternoon! Home Depot and Lowes both carry peel and stick back splashes that are super easy to install without grout or glue. Another option is backsplash panels made of PVC, which is what we used. We found a great selection at overstock.com. This is a great option because it is light and doesn’t add much weight to your camper. All you have to do is cut them to fit your area and we used a heavy duty double sided tape to install them. The upside to the panels are that they are extremely light weight and easy to clean. 

3. Textiles

IMG_9717 (1)Textiles is my favorite part of any redesign. This can be anything from pillows, seat cushions, and in our case- curtains and quilts. If your camper has a wooden valance you can usually just unscrew them or you can install a curtain rod underneath. We chose to take our wooden valances off and installed wrap around curtain rods in their place. I recommend wrap around curtain rods to help block side light and provide more privacy. You can also leave on your blinds for additional privacy. We actually took ours off only to turn around and put them all back on again. It was a whole ordeal so trust me, leave them on if you are bothered by light when you sleep. Now, Im sure there are plenty of y’all who can make curtains from scratch but we saved some time by buying curtains and simply hemming them to fit our windows. This is a great option if you have little sewing experience or do not own a sewing machine. A simple straight hem can be done by hand. Going with our retro camper vibe I picked out some curtains by The Pioneer Woman. You can find them here. Also, I think Im the last person on earth to know about the Pioneer Women line but it is adorable!! She has all sorts of fun bowels and table settings that would look great in any camper. Along with curtains we chose to add some fun quilts and pillows. The red and white quilt is a hand me down from my mother but the accent quilt is from Walmart which you can find here and the Love pillows are from a trip to London, but I found some similar ones here. 

There you have it! 3 simple projects that will transform your camper and help show off your own personal style. We would love to hear your own tips for making your camper feel like home!

How house hunting turned into buying a camper

Let me start by saying Hello! We are Richard and Whitney Marshall and thank you for visiting our blog. We currently live in Dallas, Texas with our french bulldog, Rosie, and we recently tied the knot! Like most newlyweds, the question “where are we going to live?” was one of the first of many decisions we had to make about our new lives together.

This question seemed to have an easy answer. Get married, buy a house, then have some children. That’s the normal order of things, right? That’s what I’ve always been told, so in the months leading up to our wedding we started house hunting. What we found wasn’t a house but another bigger question, what did we really want our lives to look like?

So we and sat down and put aside what we thought our lives should look like and instead focused on what we wanted them to look like. We noticed we kept coming back to wanting more quality time together and wanting the flexibility and freedom to travel more. A house, or anchor, or money pit (just a few of the names that we refer to it as) would not bring us that. Instead, I quit my job soon after we were married and we started looking for a van to move into and travel the United States in. We have always been very interested in the tiny living movement and with the recent explosion of van life we thought this would be a good fit.

Then reality set in. I applaud anyone who has figured out how to work and also travel 365 days out of the year and I hope we reach that one day. But, as of right now, we realized that it will have to be a balance of travel and Dallas for us. Richard owns his own company and while it gives us a lot of freedom, he does need to be present in order to keep it growing.

This meant we would travel part-time and stay put where we were the rest of the time. Luckily, we are in a small duplex so the transition back and forth to something smaller will ideally be less of a challenge. This also meant that sprinter van life was out of the question. Have y’all seen the price tags on those? If this was not going to be our full-time home we could not spend that much. Enter travel trailers. Y’all these things are so cool and affordable! We started our search by going to an RV show and holy cow you wouldn’t believe how pimped out some of these things are! How someone could pull some of these suckers behind a truck I don’t even know. After trying out every single size and pretending to eat breakfast at every single table we came across the Riverside Retro collection and we were in LOVE. They have all of the retro charm that we love in a vintage camper, but with all the new amenities. This meant only having to do a few cosmetic updates. We found a dealer and that was that. We knew with a little paint and TLC this camper would be our perfect adventure mobile, and we named her Red.

Meet Red! Meet Red! You can look at all the Riverside Retro models here
Richard is 6’9″ so we also had to test the height

Again, let me end this with a big thank you for visiting! Please subscribe to our blog so we can take you through the remodel of Red and then off on our adventure with us starting July 7, 2018! We will be bringing you remodel ideas as well as travel and camping tips! Oh and of course adorable pictures of Rosie for all you dog lovers!