OK, let’s talk about RV remodels.
If you’ve got an RV, you’ve no doubt already thought about, dreamt about, or already done some remodeling or renovations on your own RV. Or maybe you’ve been afraid to tackle the RV remodels you have in mind and you’re looking for some courage (or inspiration). I understand. Each project we started took courage — trust me — but I can’t tell you how happy we are that we had the
balls courage to move forward with our RV remodels and create our home on wheels that genuinely feels like home (see pics below)!
So here’s our story — and then I hope you’ll share yours!
As you may (or may not) know by now, we purchased our first motorhome — our first RV actually — and it’s a 1996 Manor by Thor that was in desperate need of an RV makeover — RV remodel — RV modification — call it what you will — this puppy needed it!
Don’t get me wrong — we were thrilled to have finally found her — but to say the decor was very outdated and didn’t suit us would be putting it kindly.
Before we even moved in, we made the most important RV remodels and I’ll be blogging about each of those updates in separate blog posts.
HERE ARE THE RV REMODELS WE DID IMMEDIATELY
RV Remodels: MOTORHOME WIDE
- We removed all the blinds, window valances, and misc. other decor items from every room and sold them in our garage sale. Every dollar counts! Actually, we threw the curtains and blinds away. The curtains were just plain done and the blinds were too dirty to fuss with. But we sold the clock, spice holder, “artwork” and a few other things in the garage sale.
- We painted EVERY wall that had wallpaper on it. Yes, you can paint directly over the wallpaper so long as you prime it first. We’ll write more about that in another post. It was a huge job, but made a HUGE difference! I’m so glad we did it!!!
RV REMODELS: LIVING ROOM
We removed the jack knife sofa, which was in great shape but terribly uncomfortable and certainly dated. It was bolted to the floor so it involved climbing behind the front wheel, into the tight underside of the RV to get the bolts out! We then sold it on Craigslist for $165.00. If you’re selling anything on Craigslist, be sure to take great photos and write accurate descriptions including dimensions.
We replaced the jack knife sofa with two amazing butter yellow leather power-reclining chairs. Because of the tight space they needed to fit within, we decided on the wall-hugging (wall-saver), power option. We sold two large leather chairs from our home on Craigslist for $1,500.00 and bought these two petite wall-saver recliners for $1500.00. I love it when things work out that way!
We installed a new power outlet on the wall behind the new leather recliners. It doesn’t do much good to have powered recliners if you don’t have a power source nearby
We removed the blue Lane rocker and sold it at our garage sale for $45.00. It was obviously the most used seat in the house and we were happy to get anything for it — yet the buyer thought she got the deal of the day! I guess it’s true — one person’s junk is another person’s treasure.
We removed the side table that was attached to the wall and sat next to the blue chair. I gave that to a friend who needed one for her own RV remodel.
We installed our “entertainment /work station”. I painted a black credenza that used to be in my “Tuscan” office, the most gorgeous shade of Caribbean aqua/blue and it now houses all of our office equipment — printer, DVR, DVD player, etc. We had one of the flat screen TV’s from our home bolted to the top of the credenza and the credenza is bolted to the wall. I was concerned about whether or not it would travel well, but it’s doing beautifully.
This works perfectly for us because now instead of crooking our neck to look towards the drivers area to watch TV — as we would have had to do with the original layout — now the TV is directly across from our seating area. On the downside, we lost one seat. Oh well, for our lifestyle, it was a good tradeoff.
We removed the 1996 50 pound TV from that awkward location above the front windshield and turned that space into a storage area. We sold the TV in our garage sale, natch
RV REMODELS: KITCHEN
Here’s the original kitchen. Don’t you just love the 90′s floral wallpaper, and especially the original valances that are gathered in the center and topped off with a fabric “rosette”. These look like the prom queen of window coverings! This was a makeover that just had to happen, don’t ya think! Oh, and notice the little wood spice rack on the wall — it would hold about 6 spices and that just won’t work for this girl! Wait til ya see what I did with that wall for my spices!
The first transformation I made was to paint the kitchen the same as the rest of the house. That was a good start because it got rid of the floral wallpaper, but it ended up looking bland for my tastes and just didn’t feel homey. I knew I wanted to tile it, but I was
You can see here, I also painted the wall that’s next to the refrigerator with magnetic paint so that I could hang all my MAGNETIC SPICE CANISTERS on it. This was a good use of my vertical space, which is important when organizing an RV. This wall easily holds 57 magnetic spice canisters in an otherwise fairly useless space.
It turns out I didn’t end up loving the painted magnetic wall. Each time I took the spices off to use them, the magnet on the spice canister left a black mark on the wall (uggh). As if that weren’t enough — when I drive, the tins slide a bit here and there. Nothing major — nothing ever fell off — but just enough to make things look messy, which I hated. So I changed it…
OK, here’s the new and improved kitchen and I just love it. I tiled the backsplash with gorgeous glass mosaic tiles — they’re much prettier in person than they are in this picture because you can’t see the reflection in the picture, but it’s beautiful!
This was my very first tiling project and it was quite a job! It’s not that the area is so large, but I had to learn how to cut glass for all the edges and cut curves around the the window to boot! Sheesh! I learned a lot by doing this project and I’ll write an entire post about it very soon.
The other big remodel I did in the kitchen is to install a sheet of tin on the magnetic wall for my spices. Again, this was the first time I’d ever made a template, snipped tin, or installed something like this, but I’m so thrilled with the results. And what’s super-exciting is how well the magnetic canisters stay exactly where they should stay — even when I’m driving! With the addition of the blue tiles and the silver tin, the kitchen looks very up-to-date and stylish. I just love it!!
RV REMODELS: DINING AREA
Would you believe I forgot to take a “before” picture of the dinette area? Oh well, you can see from this picture, the original fabric on the cushions and the table, of course, was flormica that matched that on the kitchen counters.
You’re seeing the prep for paint in this picture. You can also see the inspiration for my entire decorating project laying on the back counter. It’s the “Hotel Paradise” sign that’s now hanging on the back wall in the dining area. This picture used to hang outside my door when I lived on the beach in Florida. I’m a water girl — I feel most relaxed — at peace — centered — when I’m in, on, or around water, so it was a natural choice for the decorating scheme of my home on wheels.
And here’s the new and improved dining area. You can see I had the cushions professionally recovered — upholstery isn’t in my current bag of tricks — and I did an art project on the table to represent the lifestyle we’ve decided to live.
You’ll also see the “Hotel Paradise” sign on the back wall, right above my fruit basket.
The fruit basket is one of the many ways I’ve taken advantage of the vertical space in my RV.
Here’s the artwork I did on the dinette table.
I believe in making a home that reflects who you are and when we were thinking of transitioning to a fulltime RVer lifestyle, we thought about what we really wanted from the change.
Besides the obvious — seeing this gorgeous country of ours — we also wanted to relax; to breath; to feel like everyday is a vacation — even though we’re still working; to feel like we’ve created our own paradise on wheels; a retreat; and ultimate freedom — so those are the words — the reminders, if you will — to keep first things first in our new lives.
The red coral and shells is influenced the the Pottery Barn duvet I bought for the bedroom.
RV REMODELS: BATHROOM
This has to be the single room I hated the most when we bought our RV!
As you can see, we’re back to the ugly floral wallpaper. Gotta go — gotta go!
Next, who on earth ever decided it was practical or sanitary to put carpet around the toilet? That had to go! Yuck!
Now let’s talk about the square plastic toilet. I know it’s common in an RV, but we’re new RVers and it just seemed like another big yuck to me! It too had to go!
And finally, we come to the ugly beige plastic sink with a 1990′s faucet that had all kinds of permanently yucky (dirty) caulk all around it. Gotta go!
So here’s what we did — we got rid of the wallpaper by painting the walls. That was already a help. Next, we removed the plastic toilet and yucky carpet. In it’s place we installed a lovely white china toilet and I tiled the area with the same glass tile I used in the kitchen. You wouldn’t normally put glass tile on a floor, but obviously, this area doesn’t get walked on, so I went ahead and did it. It’s so pretty in person
Then it was time to change out the sink. The white china sink I bought was slightly larger than the plastic one that was there, so we had to enlarge the hole in order to install the sink.
Finally, we had installed a satin silver/brass Delta faucet. The two-tone faucet helps to tie in the mixture of brass and silver that this RV has. A few decorating touches, and we were finished.
RV REMODELS: BEDROOM
- We found the bed to be uncomfortable, so we bought a Sleep Studio 3-Inch ViscO2 Ventilated Memory Foam Mattress Topper and boy oh boy did that every make a difference. I’ve had friends say they bought a foam memory mattress of one kind or another, but they always felt sweaty hot when they were trying to sleep. Getting a VENTILATED memory foam mattress is the only way to go. If you’re interested, you can get the one I chose and save 52% off the normal retail price! Don’t you just love to save money! I know I do
- We bought all new organic Pottery Barn bedding and it makes for a luxurious bed.
- I painted the brass bedside lamps/sconces with a weathered verdigris finish and covered the old shades with new fabric to match my new decor.
- Installed new Roman shades.
- We removed the little 12″ TV that was housed in the corner and sold it in our garage sale. We replaced it with one of the smaller flat tops that had been in our home. The TV we installed is wider than the space it needed to go into, so we used a TV Wall Mount that’s placed inside the TV cabinet, but allows the larger TV to sit flush with the outside of the cabinet. Awesome solution and love the bigger, yet lighter, TV in the bedroom.
Well, I think that’s about it for the changes we made prior to our move in. When I look at the list, it seems quite long, but the most intensive, time consuming job was painting the walls. Everything else seemed to roll along smoothly. All in all, the updates have made for a very comfortable, remodeled home.
I’ll be blogging about each and every thing I mentioned above and will show you lots of pictures of the projects. Our RV is a happy, happy place and it reflects who we are!
How About YOU?
What kinds of RV remodels have you made to your RV or what are you wanting to do? If you have photo’s, please share! I love to see what others are doing. I’m always looking for inspiration.
If you’ve considered making some RV remodels of your own, but you’ve been reticent, go for it. Make it your home. You’ll be glad you did!
Peace, Love, and Flip Flops!
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