Before and After: A Grim, Outdated RV Becomes a Boho-Modern Haven

updated Jun 25, 2020
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Moving full-time into a trailer or RV is a dream for many, but it’s not necessarily an easy transition. There’s tons of work in decluttering and paring down belongings, plus figuring out how to transition life to a permanently smaller space. But Kimberly Dekker and her family, The Dekker Trekkers, felt up to the challenge.

In February, they took the lighter-living plunge and bought a 2010 Jayco Jayfeather EXP 26p. “We tow with a Suburban for extra comfort on the road, so we needed something lightweight but spacious enough for a family of five,” Kimberly says. This floor plan made room for a king bed, twin bunks, and space to hang out. That included a little dining space—ideal for both eating meals together and homeschooling the kids. But even though they loved the layout, the style left a lot to be desired.

“As much as we found the layout to be perfect, the brown, drab interior with busy fabrics and window coverings was not!” says Kimberly. “So we knew we would want to immediately pull off the window treatments, rip up the carpet, and brighten the space up with new paint and decor!”

This wasn’t the family’s first time revamping a camper, so they had some experience to guide them. Last year, they spent most of their summer freshening up another one and learned that for their next remake they’d hire someone to help out right from the start. “We found an awesome local contractor that was more than willing to help, and after we supplied him with the paint and flooring we chose, he got right to work and had it back to us in less than a week,” says Kimberly.

Once the structural changes were complete, they moved on to the decorative parts, which included hanging shelf storage, reupholstering the dinette cushions, and of course, adding decor. Modern touches like a black circle mirror from Target, chic cushions for the dinette, ultra boho bedding from Amazon, and a woven runner rug all make the space feel both cozy and sophisticated. Kimberly also painted the built-ins deep mossy green (Benjamin Moore’s Caldwell Green), which instantly refreshed and modernized the space with a splash of color.

The total cost so far has been $1,700, but according to Kimberly, an RV always holds potential for changes. “We still have some fun projects planned in the future, I think remodeling an RV is never ‘done,’” she says. “it’s always a creative work in progress.”

If the thought of renovating your own camper for full-time living has enticed you, Kimberly encourages anyone to follow that feeling. “Don’t be afraid to take risks, reach out and ask questions, seek advice from seasoned RV remodelers, and do lots of research!” she says. “We’ve connected with so many amazing people throughout this process and have drawn so much inspiration from them. The RV community is truly unlike any other, we feel so lucky to be part of it!”

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