Category Archives: Vintage Travel Trailer Renovation

A Couple of Ideas

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A Couple of Ideas

3 weeks ago. They are even more solid now.

It’s gettin’ up into the 100′s here in Texas and as they say, necessity is the mother of invention. I got a good suggestion from Rebecca in my comments about my canopy snappin’ and I was thinkin’ of doin’ something very similar to her suggestion. My awning frame on the Silver Streak is still intact despite the canvas bein’ in shreds. Well, I don’t know this for 100% certainty as I’ve never let it out, but it looks pretty ratty even in the rolled up position. Anyway, I have one of two options.

Step one for both is the same: roll the awning out, cut the canvas off, and put the frame back in the upright position.

For Option One I use the bar on the awning to tie one edge of a tarp and tie the other edge to the fence. This is the quick fix and gives a solid shade. My only concern is the tarps fillin’ with water and weighin’ down the awning, though I think they would split before the bar bent. Things were made better back in the day.

Option Two involves zigzagging twine from the awning bar on the trailer to the fence and let the morning glories grow up and create a natural shade canopy. I wouldn’t have much considered this one right after the collapse, but 20 days later and my morning glories are growin’ like crazy! You can’t tell they even mowed any down. The fence is almost solid and there are a lot of 2-3′ tendrils reachin’ out for somethin’ to grab onto. This option is much cheaper. I already have some twine, though probably not enough to go all the way down. Guess it’s good I took the broken frame to scrap. I made enough to buy a $2 roll of twine. XD

I’m goin’ with Option Two for now. It’s cheaper, probably more secure, and hopefully much more attractive. I’ll take pictures when it’s all done!

XOXOX,

Loch

Cozy

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Looks warm, doesn’t it? That’s the sectional I ordered from Target. It actually has one more piece like the center one, but it was too awkward in the space. The little “wood stove” heater is one I borrowed from my mom and it fits perfectly where the table used to be. I removed the table top and the remaining section kind of looks like a mantle. The table was poorly centered and this looks much better. I never planned on using the table anyway. I have a couple of tv trays and am planning on finding a nice outdoor table to put under an awning so I can have friends over when it gets warmer.

XOXOX,

Loch

Six Days a Week

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Mom gave me these cute, vintage, little angel tea towels and by gave I mean I saw them in a box of stuff to go to our shop and said, “hey I’m puttin’ these in my trailer” and grabbed them up. That’s just kind of how we are.

I didn’t want them to just be in a drawer, they are way too cute for that. I also didn’t have any plans for a curtain in my kitchenette and that dowel was just there unused. I think it’s super cute and a great place right above the sink. Even the pie birds agree. You’ll notice I don’t have a Friday towel. Guess I’ll just have to go out to eat every Friday. Oh well.

XOXOX,

Loch

Put a Cork In It

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THE FLOOR IS DONE! YAAAAAAY!

I finally finished installing the Allure laminate planks in Dark Lisbon Cork. I don’t have any idea of how much weight this added to the thing. Just glad I don’t have to tow it. Sorry Dad! >_< I love the look of cork, but wasn’t sure if I wanted to go with the dark or lighter. I’m glad I chose the dark. It grounds the room and has a nice, deep, warm look. I think it will look good with the leather-ish sectional that I’m going to put in the living room. I’ll probably put a rug in that area too so it won’t be overwhelmed with the dark furniture and dark flooring.

Above I’m cutting the planks. The installation was pretty easy except for the difficult cuts and it was really tiring for some reason. There was a bit of a learning curve since I have never done this before. I started near the door so the worst of the “mistakes” are there, but it doesn’t look bad if you don’t look too close. Please don’t look too close. ^_^;;

They stick to each other well. It was about halfway before I figured out the technique to keep them from gapping too much. Still, not too bad. They need room to expand a little, right?

Here you can see the flooring in the living/dining area. I really like how there is a bit of the wall color in the floor as well as some of the darker brown that is in my furniture. Please don’t mind the dust on the table. I was using it as a work space while putting down the floor. The table will have a tablecloth on it (after I dust it of course!).

I put this picture in so you can see how the floor looks with the kitchen and bedroom colors and so you can see some of my most difficult cuts. Again, please don’t look too close! I love how the green looks next to the cork. It looks quite a bit darker in the picture, so refer to the living area picture for a more accurate idea of darkness.

Now I’m down to the little stuff like curtains and such. I am so happy to be finished with the floor. YAY!

XOXOX,

Loch

Off the Grid On the Road

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While drivin’ with my Dad in my new-to-me PT Cruiser to visit my family in central Texas we saw a lot of people livin’ in travel trailers and RVs. I’ve always known that people live in them in parks, but this is the first I’d ever seen them in fields, just little clusters of trailers or one lone trailer in the middle of nowhere.

I have no idea what they were doin’ for power, if they even had any. Not sure about their sewer usage either. It looked like they had just pulled up and settled randomly. Made me wonder if they owned the land or knew the people that did.

While havin’ a little trailer out on some land seems like it would be fun, I’d at least need to know I could dump my tank and have reliable electricity. I think if I were gonna do it I’d want a carport to park under, somethin’ with some solar panels on top and maybe even get a small wind turbine. A few raised beds for veggies and maybe some fruit trees and berry bushes and I’d be good to go. Well, except that a PT Cruiser isn’t going to tow the Rocketship no way, no how. So maybe not good to go, but good.

XOXOX,

Loch

Faux

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Faux

There’s a big difference between renovation and restoration. I’ll bet some folks would cringe to see what all I’m doin’ to the Rocketship. When I had the Airstream I remember a guy shakin’ his head and tellin’ me it wouldn’t have been that much difference to have my old air conditioning unit rebuilt or to find one salvaged. It would have been a lot of difference to me. The new one had a warranty AND a heater (and it was done in one day)! As I’m not gonna be takin’ this thing around to shows, but rather livin’ in it I want it to be the way I want it and not the way it was. No offense to those that prefer restoration, but restorin’ it would have been a fortune. I’d rather cheap out and do it to reflect my personality.

Stained Glass Window Tint

Stained Glass Window Tint

I picked out this magnolia pattern on some stained glass window tint for the front middle window. Mom installed it a couple of days ago and did a pretty good job with it! I chose it because I don’t like just havin’ drapes to block out the light, but I do like privacy (and light). I picked this particular pattern because, well it was pretty, and because I loved the colors in it. They go really well with the colors in the living/dining area as well as pickin’ up some of the gold from the outside of the trailer. So it looks good inside and out! It’s also right under the awning so it shouldn’t fade super fast.

XOXOX,

Loch

Pumpkin and Nutmeg

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And now to see the before and after pictures of the living/dining area. Yay!

They’re not from the same angle, but you get the idea here. The placement of the table is the only issue I have with the Silver Streak’s layout and it may be something that is unique to mine since these were pretty much custom built. If I’d actually seen the Rocketship before I had the handyman start work on it I would have had him move it before he put the beadboard on. If you notice in the picture with the chair (not really an after since I still obviously need to do the floor), there is no way a normal adult can fit in there. Also the stove is what you’d have your back against and probably not a good idea to have your hair catch fire while you’re eatin’.  You can see the previous owners “solved” this problem by putting shelving there so it wasn’t used at all. Tacky. I’ll probably store my little folding chair there and pull it out to the end of the table for use.

Here is the before of the living area. The paneling was starting to warp and peel so I had it replaced with beadboard. I couldn’t do that for the corners because they are more curves than corners. I wish I hadn’t lost the picture of my mom puttin’ on the beadboard wallpaper there. It took a couple of tries but she did a good job with it.

And now you can see it all painted up. In the picture it looks a nice honey and chocolate as I was expecting. In reality the honey beige looks pumpkin orange and the chocolate appears a nutmeg color. It’s still pretty, but not exactly what I was planning on. The beadboard wallpaper shrunk when it dried and so it looks a little crunchy in areas. We weren’t sure how to avoid that. I sanded and primed the plastic but wallpaper just wasn’t meant to stick to it. Still, looks good enough to continue the pattern all the way around and it will be behind my couch anyway.

The clock in the before picture didn’t work and for some reason instead of pryin’ it off it was cut out. I’m not namin’ any names, but that wasn’t the best workmanship. >_< Luckily, my mom found a clock that fits over the hole (I suspect she was feelin’ guilty about that hole).

I am dreadin’ doin’ the flooring…

XOXOX,

Loch

Hot Stuff

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It was finally a warm enough day to get back outside and do some work on the Rocketship. I’d been wantin’ to cut some butcher block to fit over the top of the stove.  I’m not going to use propane so I got an electric vintage double burner hot plate.

Here I am cuttin’ the butcher block. I also sanded it so that the edges were a little less rough and a little more consistent with the rest.

It fit perfectly. Yay! I took the burner covers off the top so that it would set down in there. It gives a little more counter space to work with which is really lacking in pretty much all travel trailers.

And this is the little vintage double burner. It slides back to be out of the way and allow me some workspace in front. I can pull it forward for use. I really like that everything is going to be electric. I am really considering gettin’ some solar panels if I end up stayin’ in it for any length of time.

XOXOX,

Loch

The Galley

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The Galley

Before I get into the paint colors in the galley and how they aren’t quite what I was expecting, I’d like to say how much I love Sherwin-Williams.

I paid a little more to get the proper cabinet paint. My mom tends to use the same paint throughout the house and we have had issues with paint scratching off easily in the kitchen, in every kitchen we’ve ever painted. I knew this would be a definite problem in a more confined space and since it was a small space didn’t mind the slightly higher price. It has been covering perfectly. I could have actually gotten by with just one gallon of the Vanilla Custard (my white) and just a half gallon of the other colors if I had any idea how many fewer coats of paint it would take. I bought the amount it would have required if I were using cheaper paint. I have definitely learned my lesson. It will take less paint (fewer coats) and less time if I spend about the same in a lesser amount of higher quality paint. Who knew?!

Which brings me to the color. I gave the guys at Sherwin-Williams my color swatches that I had picked out at Lowe’s or Home Depot, can’t remember. He matched up the paint and handed me my swatches back asking if it was all right. I was like, um, these are the same swatches I just gave you… He had to show me where he’d put the paint on the swatch. You can only tell there is paint on top of the color swatch if the light hits it just so. The color matching was FLAWLESS. As God is my witness, I will never use Lowe’s, Home Depot, OR WalMart for paint EVER AGAIN! I can’t even begin to tell you how many times I’ve had to repaint an entire room because my second gallon of paint from one of those other guys wasn’t even close. The guy at Sherwin-Williams said that I could come to any Sherwin-Williams in 5 years (or whenever) and ask what color I used for the trailer and they would be able to match it perfectly. Is it possible to be in love with a paint store? I think so.

Okay, so about the color being not quite what I expected. I had chosen my colors to fit a Steampunk theme, which meant some serious neutrals. I had chosen the kitchen color because I was using the same color with a brown in the living room. The color is called Honey Beige and I was expecting an amber caramel color. Now this color does match perfectly the swatch I gave the paint guys, but I forgot all about color theory. ^_^;; Being an artist, I should have known better. I did check that this golden color looked good with the brown and wouldn’t clash with the green in the bedroom, but I neglected to look at it with the white color. Against the white it is yellow-orange. I forgot how colors can look entirely different if placed next to another color and this one really does. Both it and the green are vibrant and cheery, not the subdued and elegant colors I was planning for my Steampunk style. But that is okay because I love color! My original theme was going to be Eclectic and Funky, Bohemian Gypsy, Artist Cottage on Wheels and looks like I’ve come full circle right back to that. (I think I had given that idea up because the description was so long. Haha!)

On to the pictures!

Galley

Right Side Galley - Before and After

The cluttery white shelves had to go. If you can’t get everything into the ample cabinets, you’ve got too much stuff. I can’t get over how much cleaner everything looks just because it isn’t dark. Again, the white looks WHITE, but it’s really more off-white than the pictures indicate. I’ll be interested in seeing how the Honey Beige looks with the brown color it will be paired with in the living area.

Ew! Gold Marble Mirrors

I just had to add the above picture because of those horrid gold marble mirrors. Another sign of the times that really dated this to the ticky tacky design style of the early 70′s. They were one of the first things that I told mom HAD to go, right after the carpet and those yellow squishy squares in the bedroom.

Left Side Galley - Before and After

Here is the left side of the galley. Yay! No more ugly mirrors! I am not positive, but I’m pretty sure the refrigerator is bigger in here than was in the Airstream. I can’t get over how the Rocketship is actually smaller, but the use of space is more considered. I am really happy with how it’s turning out.

XOXOX,

Loch

City of Denison

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It’s always these seemingly little things that hang me up and take up my time on the remodel. The City of Denison issued a code violation for where my dad had parked the Rocketship. If you saw our street, you’d see why I didn’t think it would be a big deal. It’s not a bad street. It’s pretty peaceful and okay. Just okay. But the neighbor on one side has a piece of indoor furniture on their front porch and the neighbors to the other side keep foil in their windows (this continues to puzzle me as we have 2 huge pecan trees that shades that side of their house all day). It’s not a bad street, but it’s definitely not upper class. Anyway, my dad had parked that bad boy on kind of the front side of the house because ta daa! there was an RV concrete pad there. It made sense.

Apparently not to the City of Denison’s new codes. It had to be moved into the back yard behind the house, squeezing between a storm cellar and a fence, dodging some fruit trees and driving over an underground well and a concrete sidewalk. OR we could put it on the driveway, which is on the other side of the house, but just a little further back. I didn’t want to do that because my mom is about to open a new store and I didn’t want to block her path from her trailer to the garage. Unfortunately that was what we had to do anyway.

So she calls up one of her handymen to see if he can move it. He shows up when she’s not here in his bare feet. I showed him where the battery was and ran inside to secure all of my paint cans really quick because this guy seemed to be in a hurry. I came back out and asked why he was usin’ a hydraulic jack to raise the trailer. He said my battery didn’t work. I was all, no way man, that battery is new. He said it didn’t work. So I look there and I say, “Maybe it’s because you’ve reversed the polarity on the lines.” *insert eye-rolling emote here, except I didn’t actually roll my eyes* I knew the lines were unmarked and so before I had disconnected the battery the previous time I had CLEARLY flagged each line as positive and negative.

At the time I didn’t know if he blew my battery, fried my hydraulic jack, or took out all of the electrical wiring in the place. Perhaps I should mention that he also managed to catch m antenna under a tree and it’s pretty mangled and hangin’ over the edge of the trailer. There is also a leak right where the antenna is now. I’m gonna have to get up there and see what I can do about sealin’ it up.

So he gets it into place and I reluctantly ask him how much it was gonna cost to move my trailer less than 100 feet. He asks me how much I’m gonna charge him to have my electric fixed. I just gave him this blank look. The guy was seriously gonna shoot back that it cost the same amount to move it as it would to fix it. I guess he was callin’ it even. I was ready for him to just be gone.

After he left I hooked up the battery the RIGHT way. Interior lights work, so the battery and electric still worked, though the jack doesn’t. I’m really hopin’ it’s just a fuse blown, but I have no idea where to look for it. Even if it’s some wiring or whatever, at least it’s just the jack affected.

XOXOX,

Loch