Our fifth wheel is affectionately named Swoosh…because we decided to “just do it” and break out of the mold of modern family living.
In March of 2015, we purchased a new Open Range 367 BHS fifth wheel by Highland Ridge. Our unit is 37 feet and some change in length. Looking back at this purchase, we are still quite happy with our RV selection.
Our little home on wheels has been perfect for our traveling adventures. We have now lived full-time in this for 26 months. Can you believe that?! Crazy…and we still love it!
In March we began a series of modifications to dress-up our space and make it even more efficient…basically, we wanted to add some Barry personality to it. Though our mods were done for our 2 Year Nomadiversary, which you can read about HERE, I wanted to travel a bit with the changes in place, to make sure everything worked out as planned.
One of the things I love most about this design is the giant u-shaped sectional. It’s family friendly and gives everyone a seat.
I ended up painting the main living area (living room and kitchen) white…and I love it! Our plan was originally calling for a shade of gray. However, the taupe sofa goes so much better with the white walls. I also made a rustic wooden valance to unite the three windows. The inspiration for our decor came from our awesome National Park puzzle that we framed, which you can read about HERE.
The old stock curtains were removed, the shades hung a bit higher and new no-sew curtains were created with one large drop-cloth. You can find my inspiration for making curtains out of a drop-cloth HERE and the how-to for making no-sew curtains HERE. All in all, I am pretty happy with how they turned out…considering I made them on the road, without the conveniences of a sewing machine or my mother to help me!
I truly love how airy and fresh the space now feels. Though I tend to favor the color gold, I did not care for the overly warm/yellow/gold-ish tones that our interior used to have. These white walls now give me an entirely new canvas.
For the entry way, it did not take much to give us a happy change. We mounted our antler sheds, that we picked up in Jackson, Wyoming back in 2015, on some scrap wood that I stained and screwed together. I would have absolutely loved to remove the padded, doorway valance…however, It provides a much-needed cushion for the tall people in my life. You can find the details on how we changed it out HERE. I then added a wooden window valance to match the ones that I made for over the couch.
For now, we are leaving the kitchen as is. We will eventually repaint the island, but I am just not sure what type of paint I want to use. And then there is the fact that…painting in an RV is a totally different game when you live in it…and do not have another house to stay in while the paint dries!
That big silver canister next to the sink is our Royal Berkey water filtration system, you can read about it HERE.
Our Entertainment Center came out splendidly…but there was a lot of trial and error. It originally looked like this:
I wanted to break up all the wood paneling so it now looks like this:
This door leads to the Bunkhouse, which is the back third of the fifth wheel.
The Bunkhouse Room
This bunkhouse is truly a great space. The one thing I never cared for, were the open shelves at the back of the room. They used to look like this:
It seemed to always look a bit sloppy. A trip to Lowes, a hand-saw and miter box and a long weekend….and we had some ultra-lightweight rustic doors for our little cabinet.
This tall and breezy bunk is the perfect place for my teenager. Though all three of the bunks are the length of a standard twin mattress, this bed is a bit wider…I do believe it is a full sized bed. In our redecorating, I made this little shelf to add to her space:
My center child loves sparkle and texture, just as much as her mama. She has made her space into the perfect reading cove, as she loves having a pile of pillows to curl up against when in her bed.
Brendan’s space is the most simple, and yes, the most narrow. Though his bunk is the most restricted…he is a trooper. This kid never complains or asks for something different. I do know that he would love to have a big cubby like his sisters, however he has been quite content with what he has.
For a young man…I think an assortment of fishing poles, a kayak, bike, knives, compound bow and snorkeling gear are far more important than the size of a bed.
He uses his curtains to display his prized collection of Junior Ranger badges from the National Parks.
Underneath Brendan’s bunk is storage and open space. When we purchased the RV, there was a dinette here. We had thought it would be a space for school and games, but after ten months we removed it. The storage is more important than a table. The space now looks like this:
I purchased these storage cubbies at Lowes for clothing and miscellaneous storage. I will say that I am not happy with these units at all. They have cracked in places and are constantly coming apart, even after Chris reinforced them underneath. What seemed like an inexpensive item, was a waste of money. I hope to change them out at some point. But for now, they will do.
The Master Bedroom
Our master bedroom is amazing…as far as storage goes. It really does have a brilliant design. There is a wardrobe closet with two large drawers below, a smaller closet on the left side of the bed and then another closet next to the wardrobe. This third closet is capable of housing a washer/dryer unit, however, we have chosen to make it our office closet and utilize the space for extra storage.
My favorite change that we made in here was over the bed. I wanted to change out this mini headboard and awkward shelf.
Chris replaced it with a new headboard made of self-adhesive, faux-wood flooring panels. It is fabulous!
There is also a great dresser at the end of our bed. We changed out the heavy padded valances for handmade wooden ones (which are pine and lightweight).
We will probably end up painting the walls in this room white as well, however I wanted to wait and see how the white walls in the front room hold up over time. The RV wallpaper is actually quite durable and I really don’t have any complaints with it, I just prefer the fresh white walls.
I also made a set of curtains out of the drop cloth that I used in the main room. For these curtains though, I added a layer of blackout fabric to the backside…I love a truly dark room at night!
This is the little hallway that goes from the main room up into our bedroom, next to the bathroom:
We simply modified one thing in the bathroom. We took out the factory towel rack and replaced it with this little handmade shelf. It is amazing how one change can be so brilliant! After two years of traveling with a decorator towel that looked pretty, we now have a great little spot to hold mason jars of cotton swabs, cotton pads and floss. And that cute little jar on the right holds a battery candle…which is perfect for nights when we boondock and are conserving electricity. You can also read about how we have set up the space in our shower HERE.
Loving Our New Style
So there it is, our little RV home tour. We hope you liked taking a peek at our space. After two years, it was time to make a little change around here. We are so thankful that we did! When we were living in houses, I found great delight in redecorating every so often…it always made me so happy! Though our life and space is a lot more simple these days…we found that we all enjoyed a little dressing up. This little house of ours…is just perfect for what we need.
“That house was…’a perfect house, whether you like food or sleep, or story-telling or singing, or just sitting and thinking best, or a pleasant mixture of them all.’ Merely to be there was a cure for weariness, fear and sadness.” – J.R.R. Tolkien