before & after: a 350 sq ft glamper that wows
Published Jan 28, 2016 5:00 AM
PAINT Bistro White valspar.com
text by SHANI SILVER photography by MESEIDY RIVERA, THE NOSHERY
Don’t pretend you don’t glamp. Any decor-obsessed domino reader has taken the opportunity to, at the very least, upgrade her campfire accoutrements. Meseidy Rivera, Creator of The Noshery, took things truly to the next level, when she purchased a camper, a 2002 Fleetwood Wilderness GLX 30 5G, as her primary residence. Together with her husband, she revamped (and glamped) a tired trailer into a modern tiny home for two. At 350 square feet, the space is truly an inspiration for minimalist living, without sacrificing a morsel of style.
HOW DID YOU FIND THIS GEM? My husband is addicted to Craigslist and sometimes spends his free time looking at what is for sale. Not because we are looking to buy anything in particular, he just likes to see what is available in case there is a deal too good to pass up. We had just started discussing maybe moving into a larger camper, and he came across it, and it was too good to skip. So we jumped on it. Living in Texas in the middle of a sweltering summer, it wasn’t the ideal time to take on such a project, but we rarely say no to a challenge.
WHAT INSPIRED YOU TO TAKE ON A GLAMPER REDO? I wanted us to have a space that truly reflected our taste, and not be tied down. We loved the idea of living with just what we need. We took it on as a challenge. We asked ourselves, “what do we need to live and can we make it a home?”
Over the past eight years, my husband and I have been married, we have moved to three different states, and that doesn’t include the moves we did while living in those states. Throughout our marriage, we’ve rented because we didn’t want to purchase if we knew we weren’t going to be there for the long haul. But, we had grown tired of renting because we couldn’t truly make the home our own, and renting is challenging when you have three dogs. Before we moved to Texas, we had purchased a 1972 Arrowflite that we did a light remodel to. After our first year in Texas, our lease was up, and I was ready to move. I hated where we were living. But finding the right location, at the right price, when having three dogs was more than challenging. Around the same time, my husband and I had watched a marathon of a tiny house living show, and I said to him, “Why don’t we move into the camper?” And that is when we moved into our first camper. It was over 40 years old, had no modern amenities and was approximately 150 sqft. We lasted 8 months in that camper before we upgraded to our new one. Which is basically a mansion at approximately 350 sqft.
BEFOREWHAT WERE YOUR PRIMARY GOALS FOR THE SPACE? I wanted everything to meet three requirements. It had to be aesthetically pleasing, functional, and necessary. Living in a tiny house (camper) requires creativity with a limited amount of space, and challenges you to take stock of what is actually necessary.I want the space to be a place where my husband and I felt at home and an environment where I can be creative. Because I work from home, it’s important for my home to be efficient, pretty and functional. These were things I took into consideration when making any decisions on decor or organizing.
FAUCET Giagni Fresco Stainless Steel 1-Handle Pull-Down lowes.com
SINK (Perfect double basin sink for a small kitchen) Moen 2000 Series 18-in x 24.75-in Double-Basin Stainless Steel Undermount Residential lowes.com
WHAT IS THE OVERALL AESTHETIC YOU WENT FOR? When describing it to my friends I frequently would say modern luxe. I think this is mostly reflected in the paint colors and brushed brass finishings. For a long time, I had a strong feeling against brass, but the combination of brushed brass and dark gray paint was essential to creating a luxe feel in such a small space.
WHAT WAS THE BIGGEST CHALLENGE DURING THIS PROJECT? Painting in 100-degree weather! We decided to take this project on right when a heatwave hit Texas. We are lucky that the RV park where we live has a storage area in the back that allowed us to work on the trailer while we still lived in our old one. My husband got his hands on a generator, and we spent the weekends prepping the camper to paint. Which is very tedious! Once it came time to paint we couldn’t run the A/C and have the windows closed because it wouldn’t allow ventilation. Even with the windows open and fan running the fumes would build up because the space was so small. We wore paint suits, gloves, industrial masks and head scarves. We looked like we were auditioning for Breaking Bad. It took several sweaty weekends and many gallons of water.
AND YOUR FAVORITE MEMORY? My favorite memory was when we pulled off all the paper and painter’s tape. It was like unwrapping a big present. We had spent many weekends working, troubleshooting and sweating and it was finally time for the big reveal. Once I saw how bright and open, it looked I squealed with delight. The feeling of accomplishment was overwhelming. My husband and I celebrated with high-fives and cold beers.
WHERE WILL YOU GO FIRST?? Because we live in it full time, it takes more time to pack-up and get ready for travel, so we have yet to take it anywhere. But, it is freeing to know we can go wherever life takes us. My husband and I love to hike and camp. I would love to take it on the road for a few weeks and visit different national parks and discover hidden eateries along the way.