So I bought a van?! Whaaaaat?
Hi Guys, how bloody crazy is this new world?!
So lockdown cancelled many of my travel plans (booooo!!) and I came to thinking of ways I could still travel but also stick to these new rules and regulations we now have in day to day life.
Now, I'm not a millionaire, I can't just rock up and buy myself one of those kitted out motorhomes with showers and toilets and all the gadgets so how do I do this to my budget?
Well, I originally wanted to buy a teardrop trailer which I could just tow along behind me and drive all over the UK but then when I really thought about this, it just didn't seem worth it. Imagine if I had to reverse the thing! I'd be a nightmare. Plus I would have to pay for lessons and converting the inside of the trailer so I can sleep in it. It actually became pretty costly.
Damn it. How else can I do this?
I know the perfect idea.. why don't I buy a van... and convert the van myself into a camper? *Lightbulb moment*
Amazing. Bought myself a lovely little VW Caddy for roughly £7,300 with low mileage and nothing in the back apart from a few wooden panels.
I fell in love as fast as my bank account emptied. Oh well, money on memories is always something I can forgive.
So, I've got my van now, what have I done with it? Let me tell you!!
My first job was to remove the wooden panels and the bulkhead from the back and give my van a good vacuum and a dust.
Once done, I could get to installing the insulation. I bought this from Ebay, 10 meters for £48.79. (Seller: ebuystation2010)
This is a foam insulation which is also sound proofing and deadening and was self adhesive so I didn't need to buy anything additional. Peel and stick and that is that.
Easy peasy to do, I covered literally everywhere with it. Then popped the wood panelling back on.
Next up! Flooring! Man, do I love my flooring and so I should! This bad boy cost me a whopping £104.95 for 2.5m x 2m. Another Ebay purchase. They should probably sponsor me after this van build because well, let's face it, I've spent a small fortune on there so far. (Seller: best4flooring)
How did I fit it? Well, sprayed the hell out of the floor with spray adhesive and then stuck it right down and cut round the edges, then my lovely mum neatened the edges for me and tucked them in under the metal trims. Magic. Instant home on wheels.
Controversial but my next step wasn't the walls. It was the furniture. Yep, I do things differently around here.
Anyway, I bought an old cupboard from Marketplace on Facebook for £15. A tin of paint for £15 and I already had the sandpaper. I sanded it down and painted it white, took the handles off and put my own on (Ebay again, shock!! £2.50 each there's absolutely tonnes on there I bought them from all different sellers).
When the cupboard was painted I went to fix it to the van floor but I decided it was too tall so my lovely dad chopped the top off it so it no longer had a drawer in the top.
This genuinely made it the perfect size and it looked so cute. Slide along to see the progress
We fit the bed too but apparently I didn't take any photos of that. Nice one Kaye. The bed was £260 from convertavan (ha I think you can find them on Ebay too, but they are local to me!)
We painted it white and screwed it to the floor with fixings. Nothing much to write home about there, a bed is a bed. But it's bloody comfy. Mattress was, you guessed it, from Ebay! (Seller: reliantsalesfoam) £60 and I ordered the firmest one you can get. There's soft, medium and firm.
Now... I had many a debate with myself over how to do the walls. I originally bought wood panels to nail to the sides but then decided these would be too heavy. I really wanted wood effect and didn't want to carpet the walls so I needed to find a way I could do this and do it without adding extra weight. My mum originally suggested Lino but I couldn't find any I liked and then stumbled across some Lino floor planks in B&M. Of all the places to find something perfect, it just had to be B&M didn't it? You can find literally everything in there! I bet you thought I was going to say Ebay again didn't you? Well, even old reliable let me down here.
I bought 5 packs at £10 each and in the packs you got 7 planks which is enough to do one square metre. Plenty. I used 3 packs in total and stuck them on with gorilla glue and spray adhesive. On the side of the van where my cupboard is, I tiled and grouted as well as the wood effect walls. Tiles were from Ebay, what a surprise, (maybe I should call this project the Ebay van). I bought 3 tile sheets for £25.59 which was enough to do along the top of my cupboard and along down the side, and I even had some tiles left over.
I have the van at a nice finish now. Not completed, as I still need a lot of things, for example the leisure battery, switch panel, working lights, a stove. Wow, I have so much left to do ha! Oh well, it will do me for now until I get all those lovely things.
I can't wait to see the process through to the end. If you want to follow along with my journey you can find me on facebook, just search "kayescaddy" or you can also find me on instagram, my handle is @kayescaddy.
Let me know what you think!! Would love to hear your opinions.
- Kaye xo