She-sheds are in the news these days. Seems sisters are doing it for themselves, repurposing dusty garden sheds into personalized get away spots. How great would it be if you could have your she-shed and take it on the road, too? If you make over a travel trailer, you can! Glamping is all the rage and so it makes sense to combine these two amazing trends. See how you can have your own mobile she-shed and make it look better than you could have imagined. Take your office on the road.
Look Before You Leap
I know you’ve been swooning over those adorable vintage campers that are everywhere on social media. Be forewarned: the word has already gotten out, and these little cuties are commanding big bucks. If yours has got to be vintage, shop around: e-bay, Craig’s List, Little Vintage Trailer, and Tin Can Tourists are good online resources. However, make sure you know what you’re getting before you exchange your hard-earned money for that little pink palace. Even if you never intend to take your get-away out of your yard, you have to get it there first. When was the last time your trailer was moved? Does it pass the sniff test? Mold and leaks are no joke. Join a site such as girl camping and search it for tips on purchasing a vintage trailer. If you don’t have any experience with trailers, consider contracting with someone at an RV dealership to inspect the trailer for cracks in the frame, dry rotted tires, or gaps in windows or roofing.
If you can’t bear the thought of trooping through dented, scratched, smelly, and potentially troublesome tin palaces, you’re in luck. There are shiny new trailers that have all the appeal of their vintage counterparts without the shag carpeting and the avocado appliances. There are many advantages to owning a current trailer: air conditioning and onboard toilets and showers are just two.
Before you take the plunge, make sure you know where you’ll be placing your mobile get-away. Make sure you have easy access to the site, especially if you plan to hit the road from time to time. At the very least, the spot where you park should be as level as possible. Ultimately, a surface of crushed gravel, brick pavers, or poured concrete would be the most stable and would allow you to pull out as the need arises. And although your trailer will run off household current, you may want to consider installing a post with 30-amp service. Access to water is also a consideration if you’re using your trailer to create art or to house overnight guests.
Decorating your trailer is definitely the fun part. It will be your reward for all your due diligence in selecting the right trailer and preparing your site. Use the time while you’re waiting for delivery to ponder your decorating theme and color scheme. Except for the odd tiny item, resist the overwhelming urge to amass piles of cool stuff before you’ve got your trailer on site. For one thing, the trailer you end up with will most likely dictate your color palette and overall design. And you’ll want to be sure you have accurate measurements to make sure any of your purchases will fit through that tiny door!
Cute decor is fun if your trailer will mostly sit in your yard, but if you really plan to travel a lot, you’ll want to streamline. When you’re on the road, all those tchotchkes will have to be stored—or you’ll risk damage to the interior of your trailer from flying debris. All travel trailers also have a weight limit, and exceeding it can cause serious damage to your trailer, your tow vehicle, and you.
Congratulations, you’ve bought a personal sanctuary and an entrée to adventures near and far. But you’re also on the brink of a whole new social network. Groups like Sisters on the Fly or RVing Women not only organize outings but share knowledge ranging from craft and decorating how-tos to travel safety tips. For links, check out Camp Like A Girl.
images: Air B & B, Crystal Garman Baker, and Camp Like a Girl
Written by Jennifer Gillis. Jennifer is a retired librarian and owner of “Babe,” a retro-look travel trailer. She has survived numerous trailer faux pas, including décor and equipment malfunctions. She currently writes for her own blog Rambillon.