Tuesday, June 11, 2013

RV remodel on a dime!

We have a family of 5 and a small budget.  Last summer we really wanted a little RV we could take the family camping in.  Our requirements?  Small enough that we can afford the gas and big enough to sleep most of us (we can always pitch a tent).  We also wanted something with low miles.  We read all we could and found that Toyota Dolphins had a great engine that got up to 18 miles per gallon, a great layout and might be affordable if in bad enough shape on the inside.  This is what we found... a 1983 Dolphin.
Yep.. Clearly in bad enough shape.  I forgot to get more photos, but it was in sorry shape.  The back end was missing the mattress and had only a small blow up mattress on a sheet of plywood.  Everything was 80's from the floral wallpaper to the wood paneling cabinets.  UGLY!  The good part?  It was cheap and though it was a 5 hours drive away (found on craigslist) the engine only had 60,000 original miles on it!!!!

So first things first.. We pulled the disgusting carpet out and painted the floors with floor paint.  Then my husband built a cool stool/ bench behind the front seat for out little ones to climb into the overhead bed.  We then pulled out the non functioning closet to make for more end of bed space on the bed in back (pictured below).
 We then started painting...everything! the cabinets got painted with Annie Sloan chalk paint so we wouldn't have to sand, and the walls were painted blue as was the floral wallpaper in the bathroom.  We replaced the skinny air mattress with a nice piece of foam we had and covered it with a sheet in a matching color.  When  it was completed we grabbed some throw pillows from a garage sale to bring the color scheme together.
 We removed those annoying blinds that were always clanging around and replaced them with curtains.  We mounted a clock and Josh secured a seat belt system for the two car seats.
 I recovered the bench that the two car seats are on with foam and fabric I had on hand.  This is the bench pictured in the first photo.  Sure looks a lot different with some new fabric!  I just stapled gunned it on.
 Those delicious tomatoes pictured below are from my husbands garden and they were SO delicious.  I mean who goes camping with out a pile of fresh tomatoes right? I must say they didn't travel well there and we had to move them into the sink.
 We ripped out the broken curtain divider that was between the above cab bed and the rest of the rv.  We also used beadboard paneling to recover the fridge, and go around the camper at waist height to cover some interior wall damage, and give the place some style.
 We love our cozy little Rv and the whole makeover was pretty darn cheap!
 It did take a few man hours though!  Just goes to show what you can do for under $200!  We finished it last summer and I just kept forgetting to blog about it, but thought those of you remodeling might like a little inspiration!  There is a light at the end of the tunnel!  We had a GREAT trip around Colorado last summer and hope to do something great again this year like hitting up the peach orchards again or going to Pagosa Springs.  What do you think?