I’m excited to be able to share another camper makeover with you this week. You might remember my friend, Cassie, from her first camper makeover last year. Cassie had so much fun making over her first pop up camper, that she sold it and bought another to remodel. She did a fantastic job, and I’m so pleased to be able to show off her work. Her enthusiasm is infectious, so I’m going to let her share her renovation in her own words. Here’s Cassie to tell you all about her latest project…
I am so excited to have our second pop up be featured on this amazing blog, and I am thankful I found The Pop Up Princess blog when we were looking to re-do our trailer! If you are new to this site, I promise you will want to save it to your favorites–whether you are planning to re-do a pop up or just maintaining one.
On a whim we decided to sell our previous pop up, the one that we refinished last summer. Within 3 hours of posting it for sale, it was snatched up and gone from our driveway! If you’ve been wondering about how remodeling your pop up will effect its resale value, I can attest that it will have a positive impact, if done right. We found and purchased our new camper that same week.
Since I did the first one on a budget, I wanted to try really hard to do the same for the second one. We may have been crazy, but we remodeled the entire pop up camper all in one week. We spent a lot of hours that week on it, and my house was very neglected… 😉
The first thing we did was give it a good wash down. It was dirty from being stored and just needed to be cleaned up. The outside was especially dirty and showing its age. A magic eraser, bug and tar remover and Goo Be Gone worked wonders!
The next thing we worked on was taking down all the curtains and valances. I labeled all the curtains as I took them down so I could measure them to make replacement curtains. That way, if the panels were different sizes, I would know where to put each new panel. Thankfully, they were all the same size, so it made my job much easier. The valance was stapled to the top of the roof, so I used a screwdriver to pop them all out. All the old valances went to the garbage.
Whenever I design a pop up, I pick out the fabric for the cushions first and then design around that. I get overwhelmed if I don’t pick out something to start from. We are lucky enough to have a local furniture store that has rolls of designer upholstery fabric for $2.50/yard. I purchased 10 yards of this, and my total was $25.00 for my cushion fabric. This gave me a great jumping off point to chose paint, flooring, and accessories.
We decided to take out the dinette bench and table. Originally, I was going to pull all the cabinets out but realized very quickly that the one wall of cabinets would be very challenging to take out. I honestly didn’t have the patience for that. I did take all the cabinet doors, hardware and drawers out to be painted. I put all the hardware in baggies and labeled what drawer they went to.
Once that was all out, I started painting the cabinets. I primed them all first with a strong adhesive primer and let that dry overnight.
I picked out the paint by matching sample chips to the cushion fabric. I originally thought I was going to do white cabinets, however we have two little ones (2 and 5) who have dirty little hands and feet. In our last trailer, the cabinets were white, and we frequently had little hand prints on those surfaces. I had just seen Todd’s Pop Up Camper Makeover on Pinterest and here on this blog, and I loved his blue cabinets! To paint the walls, I found a can of white/grey paint on the mistint shelf that matched the canvas perfectly. It was only $5 at Menard’s. I bought some paint in the blue color I liked, and that was $20 with a $5 mail-in rebate. I didn’t even go through a ¼ of it. I have lots of it left over for future projects.
I can sew, but I am an instant gratification type of person and like fast and easy. I went to Wal-Mart, after finding black out curtains online for a good price. I took the measurements of the curtains and realized I could cut a long panel in half and use it for two panels in the trailer. I bought four sets of long panels, folded them in half, cut them and then hemmed the cut edge. I took the plastic clips off the old curtains and then sewed them on to my new curtains. They were a pliable plastic, and I wasn’t sure how to reattach them. My grandma, my resident sewing expert, told me you could just sew right through them, and she was correct! It worked great!
Our next step was to pull out all the flooring. Yikes! 😛 What a task! That’s when I realized that we were fully committed to this remodel. The top layer of sheet vinyl came up easily, but we had to scrape the bottom layer off. I found that using a blow dryer to heat the area worked wonders and made it come off really easily. I really liked the look of the faux wood vinyl plank flooring. We could have gone with cheaper square sticky tiles, but I had the money in my budget, so we splurged a bit. The cost of the vinyl plank flooring was $70, but I love how it turned out. Once the cabinets were painted and the flooring was in, we put the cabinets back in. This was a lot easier than I thought it would be.
I searched Pinterest for an easy way to do the countertops. I did not want to take a lot of time cutting out and applying new Formica. I found a pin where someone had used stone spray paint and a high gloss floor sealer to transform their countertops. I decided it couldn’t make them any worse than they already were, so I took the plunge and just did it. I am happy how they turned out. The only issue I had was that I moved the countertops before they were dry and scratched an area. I didn’t dare re-spray paint that spot, so there is one scratch on the counter already. 🙁 So far it doesn’t seem to scrape off easy once it’s fully dried. The countertops do have a rough texture to them, even with the high gloss sealer. These are not food grade safe, but we do all our food prep outside anyway. I will put something down inside if I need to use the countertops for that purpose.
I didn’t want the the table to have the rough texture I had with the counters, so I decided to just spray paint it with regular paint. It worked great! We did the same with our last camper and had no issues with the paint chipping.
With my grandparents’ help, I cut all the fabric out for the cushions one afternoon. We measured the sides of the cushions and then added an inch to each measurement, so we would have a 1/2” seam on each side. My grandpa was awesome and took all the old zippers out of the cushions while my grandma and I worked on cutting out fabric. I had plans to sew them all myself, but I think when I told Grandma I was going to just staple them together if my sewing skills failed me, she felt a little nervous. She decided to get them ALL done for me one day while I was at work. I was so surprised when I went out to the camper after work, and they were all in there completed and beautifully done. I am so thankful to live next door to my grandparents. 🙂
The bunkend screen was ripped and had been duct taped. I didn’t care for how it looked and the duck tape had melted into the screen and canvas. It was a sticky mess. I took the duck tape off and got nervous, because there was a lot of sticky, nasty goo on there. Thankfully, after scrubbing for an hour with Goo Be Gone and a wet wash cloth, it came off. I used a heavy duty thread and hand sewed the bottom of the screen to the canvas. I couldn’t believe what a difference it made!
The hitch and the bumper were very rusty. The bumper was very crooked and bent, so we straightened that out and then painted it. My husband used a metal sander to sand it down. Then he used black paint meant for metal bumpers and spray painted them both. The front wire harness was also a mess and had wires all over the place. He used a wire cover and made that area look so much better!
We completed all of this in just eight days! We plan to add a refrigerator to the open cabinet at some point, but we are pretty happy with it. Here is what our budget looked like. My original goal was to do it under $200. I went over by $5. 😀
Paint for cabinets – $35 (I could have bought a pint size can instead and saved money.)
Counter spray paint – $15
Flooring – $70
Curtains – $70
Fabric for Cushions – $15
Decorations – Free (I used what we had around the house.)
Grand Total- $205
I am blown away by what paint, fabric and flooring can do for a pop up. You don’t need a big budget to make big changes. I am so happy with how our camper turned out! I can’t wait to use it camping this summer!
Thank you so much, Cassie! You’re awesome! 🙂
I hope you all were as inspired by Cassie as I was… and keep those makeover pictures coming! I love sharing them with our wonderful community of pop up campers. You guys are amazing!