It's been a while since we had our last DIY post. Mostly because we've already had the big reveal and we've been living full-time in Elsie for over 4 months now. But we've still got some tricks up our sleeves and a few things we want to show off.
We've been getting a lot of questions about our old camper and how we've specifically renovated certain aspects of Elsie. While we did a complete overhaul and spent nearly a year getting it all done, there are some pretty simple tricks we'd recommend to anyone purchasing an old trailer that can give it an instant facelift without all the work.
1. Custom Shelving
We found that while Elsie did have a lot of cabinet space, we could always use more storage. One of the ways we personalized our camper was with custom shelves that we built from scratch. These two hang on opposite sides of the bed above the window. We made the base from leftover wood in Jerry's shop and the old copper lines we tore out from Elsie. We love the look and they are super functional. We tackled both shelves in just a couple hours.
2. Organizational Areas
We made two last minute organization stations in Elsie right before we left. The first was our key and notes holder. I had found this cool old phone messages box at an estate sale and had always used it in my office or apartment. I couldn't part with it when we left, but we also didn't have a lot of counter space. So we drilled some small holes, added these coffee mug hooks to the bottom to hold our keys and mounted it to the wall. We use it everyday!
The second organizational space we created was on the front of the bathroom door. We had lots of old copper lines leftover, so I had Carson affix this piece to the door using some old curtain rod braces. We added some S-hooks so we could hang things and a sticker chalk board underneath to write notes.
We stripped Elsie of all her faux contact paper and put on several coats of bistro white paint. But if you don't have the time or energy for that, wallpapering a single wall or area can really add a pop of color and personality. While we didn't do that on our walls, we did add wallpaper to the ceiling. It's one of my favorite DIYs in the camper and it only took a couple of afternoons to complete.
At just 120 sq ft, Elsie is small. Like crazy tiny. But we added a floor length mirror on the closet door and a nice porthole mirror in the bathroom. They are small touches, but both really set those spaces off and give them some personality.
Again, we peeled up the old tile and laid down our own vinyl plank flooring (which we highly recommend for anyone choosing a durable, yet aesthetically pleasing floor solution). But we could have easily gotten a nice floor rug if we didn't have the time. We have two small rugs in the Elsie and they are actually really nice. One in front of the kitchen sink; another in front of the door.
5. PAINT ONE THING
With old campers, there's likely one appliance piece you could paint -- especially in the kitchen -- that would brighten the space up. Our oven and stovetop used to be an ugly olive drab green. With some high heat spray paint, we quickly turned that around. We now have a nice, bright white stovetop.
5. Outside Lights & Decor
Everyone wants a pretty interior. But let's face it: YOU'RE CAMPING. The whole point is to spend more time outside. So stop fretting about what the interior looks like. And start shopping for a cool pink flamingo and some stellar outdoor lights. We see a lot of people using rope lights or christmas lights. We really like ours, which give Elsie a tiki kind of vibe.