Saturday, September 10, 2011


By golly, it seems like forever since I've blogged or even thought about blogging.  Where does the time go?  I hate that I've kept everybody waiting so long to see the progress on my little camper project.  But I do believe you will think it worth the wait.  While it is not done yet, I do feel that I am in the homestretch.  I took Carried Away on her first outing last weekend--not quite perfect, but still quite capable of handling a weekend at the lake.

Against the strong opinion of my son, I decided to paint the outside myself for four very good reasons.  

1. It was cheaper.  Much cheaper.
2. It was quicker.  Much quicker.
3. Her condition warranted it.  No matter how much I spent, this little girl was never going to look perfect.  She's old and has battle scars that were just not going to be covered up with a fancy-schmancy paint job.  She's a lot like me.
4. It's been done successfully before.  I did my research and there are plenty of hand-painted trailers owned by Sisters on the Fly.  That was good enough for me.
Also against the strong opinion of my son, I chose to paint her bottom bright yellow.  There are some good reasons for that as well.  

1. Everyone in the family (except my son) voted on that color.
2. It was a color on the shelf at Home Depot (Rustoleum oil-based).
3. It made me smile and sing "You Are My Sunshine." 
You may wonder why my son's opinion is even mentioned here. Well, that would be because he did all the inside carpentry work.  I did, as nicely as possible, remind him that he was on the construction committee not the decorating committee.  In the end, he did agree that she looked pretty good considering.

Tessa had enough sense to take a shot of my beginning efforts. I admit that I had my doubts for a few hours.

I am quite happy with the results.  Of course, I still have the white to paint on the top.  Labor Day weekend did not wait for me to finish. Husband had enough sense to stop and have me take a photo of her first outing.

It was some feat getting this comfy mattress through the door, but oh, it was worth it.  Unfortunately, it came off of my guest room bed, so that room looks weird right now.

There are lots of  things to notice in the kitchen besides I did not finish painting that board. That was because it was nailed in right before we left.

The old tin was one of the pieces I bought at an auction for $10.

The string of lights I bought on clearance at Home Depot.

The dish towel from William Sonoma came from Goodwill.

The bar and little shelf thing came from IKEA.

Modern conveniences:  micro, fridge, stovetop

And now onto the dining area.
I fell in love with that yellow Waverly fabric at a local outlet.  It was $5 a yard.  I already had the blue that I used for the piping.  I actually had a local guy do the cushions for $25 a piece--worth every penny!  I know that the tablecloth does not really match, but the table was still a little sticky from painting.  *grin*
I made the curtains from some long IKEA ones that I had previously used in the house.  I love the little pinch pleats and the red rings that I sewed on.  I did not want to use the clip-on ones that are so popular . They are hung by twine right now, but that may change. 

I have several more things to finish and tweak, but I could not go another day without sharing. I hope you will stop back to see some more finishing touches.  I have a trip planned for October, so it will motivate me. I promise!  And in closing, the following photos were just too cute not to share.

That sink came in handy.  Temperatures were over 100, and Jett was a sweaty mess!
 I do believe he thought I got "Carried Away" when I pulled out my special shower gel. 
 "Please, Grandma, must I smell so . . . pretty?"


Laurie Skillern said...

Love it! I'm so wanting to do a project like this but have no clue where to even start.

Kolein said...

ok, Jett has blonde hair now??? Wow, such a change!! Oh and the camper? Sister, you are so gorgeously clever and beautifully creative! Why oh why can't we live near each other? I mean, seriously, why????

For one, I may never see my family...I'd be with you ALL THE TIME DOING CREATIVE, GROOVY THINGS!!!

I adore the camper. You are braver than brave for buying that thing and seeing the beauty that lay underneath the ugly. Sorry.

Your son is a genius. A complete and utter creative handyman genius!!!

I love all the little creative colorful things you did...and by golly we both blogged within a day of each other! Something must be moving in the spirit!


Marissa said...

It looks amazing! Beautiful....congrats on the incredible accomplishment! Tel Mike that the IDEA of yellow on the bottom would have put me on his side. But then seeing it in the pictures...well then I was on your side! :P Your family did a great job on all of it. Enjoy....Marissa

Kelley said...

She's adorable! Thanks for sharing not only pix but a little journal of the progress. Love it!

SueAnn said...

It is looking so amazing! Love the yellow!!! Perfect!!
Pics are fabulous!!
Love the baby pics...fabulous!!!
What a face!

Stephanie said...

SO cute and cozy! Who wouldn't want to go camping in that? Love it.

Kimberly said...

I love it! I think you should rent that out to your blogger friends :)

Kimberly said...

(rent Carried Away, not the kid ;))

Deanna said...

I want one! I love how everything looks you guys did a great job!


Suzanne@Meridian Road said...

CUTE!!! It looks like a great place to hang out in now.
I like the bright yellow, and the cushions are really pretty, too.

I have an old trailer~I keep wanting to re-do it and my guys say "no". They think I'll make it too cute. I don't see the problem, actually.

My Latest Sculptures said...

Can you tell me what kind of paint you used and what prep work you did when painting the outside? I am going to paint my trailer myself and I am curious as to how you did it. It looks great. Thanks in advance. Janet

Denise said...

Janet, I used rustoleum oil paint with a good natural hair brush. My husband sanded off most of the old finish. It was by no means perfect.

Paige Layno Winn said...

Beautiful job! I am amazed at her transformation. I'm searching for my camper now--thanks for blogging about your journey.

Anonymous said...

I big red puffy heart this camper!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! And Jett in the sink...*priceless* Oh and did I mention I big red puffy heart this camper????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????????

linda t said...

WOW! I am so impressed!
I have checked back often to see how she's coming along. How fun to finally see her GOOD-TO-GO... HIT-THE-ROAD-READY!
SOOO happy for you!

Angie Hanawalt said...

Looks great, I love the little kitchen! We just bought a trailer that is set up almost identical to yours (except it has a bunk above the bed). I think I am going to re-do the kitchen to be able to fit a microwave - I plan on doing a metal backsplash & putting up "walls" along either side of the kitchen to be able to "hang" anything I can put a magnet on the back of :)

jo said...

I am so glad i stumbled onto your blog and this post via pinterest. Your camper is an inspiration to me since I am working on one now too. P.S. I love love love that you hung your curtains on twine! May copy that exactly. Thanks for sharing it.

ohsogirly said...

I love the way you've done the bedroom! So pretty and cosy! And those globe fairy lights add a lovely warm feel :)

Julia Hayes said...

I love it! We're just starting to re-do an old camper and yours is so inspiring! I also love that your mattress came off your guest bed because that's what we do, too! It's so real it makes me know I can accomplish similar results on my own tight budget. Thanks for sharing!

thejoyofcaking said...

Yea! I'm so glad to have found your blog. I LOVE your vintage camper re-do. I am finishing up a re-do on the Pink Paradise (1972 Frolic). It's so nice to find someone who can relate to all my trials and tribulations! You can check out the Pink Paradise on my blog too!

Debbie Loyd said...

Your trailer is so cute, you did a really grate job. what year is this trailer?

Kerri Arthur said...

LOVE your little trailer! I have a quick question, we are going to make over a vintage trailer and I especially love your light fixtures...

This is what I am wondering about... did you put in regular home style light fixtures? How did you go about that? I found some info on the forums and from what I am seeing you can use home fixtures you just use the special 12v light bulbs... I am just hoping to get some advise from someone who actually did it.


Denise Voccola said...


My son wired the regular light fixtures in, and I use regular light bulbs. Maybe the 12v is necessary when you run off of the battery or a generator? We always plug in, so it has not been a problem. My son could probably answer this better. I am on vacation so can't ask him right now. I will try to remember to do so. We also plug in the refrigerator, microwave, toaster, etc. in regular plugs that he installed. I don't know why you would have to use 12v light bulbs.

:) Denise