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Before and After | Our Caravan Renovation in Pictures

Remember we once did a caravan renovation? Took an ugly little van and turned her into something lovely? Well, last month, I mentioned that we’d traded our beloved caravan — Dolly 1 — in for a ‘new’, larger model.

I use the term ‘new’ very loosely. The new van may have preceded her chronologically but certainly not in any other areas.

If Dolly needed a bit of updating when we first bought her, this new van needed an entire facelift.

Pretty she aint.

Another caravan makeover was definitely in order!

**grim interiors warning — the following shots are not for the faint hearted**

The Before Pictures

Dolly 2 — before her renovation
Dolly 2 — before her renovation
Attractive, red stained carpet. Nice.

The During Pictures

I have got LOTS more ‘before’ photographs that I could show you.

But I’ve always tried to maintain my blog as a happy place; a collection of beautiful things.

The pre-makeover photographs set my teeth on edge (and make me feel a little bit queasy) so I think I’ll leave it there.

Little by little over the summer months — with the help of some lovely paper from Wallpaper Direct — my boy and I transformed the very ugly little tin box, you see in the snaps above, into something rather lovely.

No mean feat when you have twin toddlers in tow, I can tell you ;)

Our caravan renovation: condensed into a little grid of nine pictures!
Hard at work!

We wanted something a little different from our first van; which was a vision in Cath Kidston.

For her successor, we wanted something bright and fresh and a little more graphic.

Wallpaper Direct have literally got the best choice.

Whatever your taste — or style — they’ve definitely got something to suit. sweetshop.

Initially, I was thinking along the lines of Orla Keily but ended up being swayed by the gorgeous designs of Verity Wilkinson’s Layla Faye range.

For the living quarters of the van, we chose ‘Daisy Chain Small‘, a gorgeous yellow and white graphic print with a retro edge.

We’ve also chosen a coordinating print for the bathroom area but I’ll keep that under my hat until we’ve finished those renovations! One thing at a time — that may be a job for the spring ;)

We’ve no curtains, blinds or proper cushions yet but — those things aside — this little van is well on the way to becoming a perfect little home from home.

A warm and cosy place, for us to enjoy camping trips and festivals.

The After Pictures

caravan makeover
caravan makeover
So much cleaner and fresher :)
caravan makeover
Gorgeous cheery colour and pattern
caravan makeover
Brightening up the kitchen area with cheerful accessories and lovely patterns
The seating area
Caravan makeover
Even my little Home print got an airing!

Caravan Renovation: Almost Complete

It just goes to show that wallpaper is so versatile.

It really shouldn’t just be restricted to the walls of a house — it can be used on furniture, ceilings — even an ugly little caravan can benefit from a little bit of pattern and colour!

There’s still a LOT to do though.

Lots more finishing off inside — plus I have some very ambitious plans for the outside of this funny little box on wheels. Bear with me, as I can foresee there may be a fair few ‘caravan related’ posts coming up over the next few months ;)

For anyone wondering what we’ve christened this little van?

Well, initially she was Lionel (don’t ask).

Then she was Wendy (Wendy-House — on wheels).

But for two little boys — who have only ever understood  that a caravan is called ‘Dolly’ — it was very, very difficult to persuade them that this new van had any other name.

So everyone, please be upstanding for…

‘Dolly Too’.

caravan makeover — before and after pics

PS — ‘too’ is not a spelling mistake. It’s a play on words!

Some Other Caravan Renovation Posts You Might Like

Painting and wallpapering a Caravan Interior
Painting a Caravan Exterior — What Paint To Use
A final guided tour of our upcycled caravan

140 thoughts on “Before and After | Our Caravan Renovation in Pictures”

  1. Hi Cara, we have just taken charge of our caravan. I am looking at wallpapering the ” walls”. They are cureently covered in a vinyl type covering. Any advice as to how to get make sure my Orla Kiely wallper will stick?

    • Hi Rona! I literally wallpapered straight over ours!! Both Dolly’s had wooden effect vinyl walls and I pasted the walls AND the paper, really well, and it stuck a treat!! If you’re really worried — particularly as the Orla wallpaper is pricey — I would suggest buying a roll of lining-paper and using that to test it out. Once you’re satisfied that it’s stuck well, you can literally wallpaper over the top! Let me know how you get on!! xx

  2. Hi Caro,
    I realise this is a very old thread but hope you’re still there for some advice!
    I’ve been studying your caravan posts as we work out our own project with an old van. Please can I ask for two tips – what did you do about the plastic joins between wallboards and ceiling boards – ours are orange and I want it all white; can I paint over them or will the paint not stick to the plastic – I can t find new white joins so think we are going to have to keep the old ones?
    Also can you make a recommendation. For the best paint to use for interior that’s available in the UK?
    Thanks so much in advance, and really, congratulations again on your amazing work – it’s so inspirational!
    Emma x.

    • Hi Emma, thanks for your message! Even though this is an old post, the blog is still very much live! I’ve just written a post on painting the exterior, funnily enough.

      Re the plastic joins — I painted them all. You can see pics in the Tips For Decorating a Caravan post. I used cupboard makeover paint and emulsion.
      Hope this helps! Caro xx

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