Small-space Planning

We’ve got a to-do list as long as my arm (really, both arms) of crucial stuff we need to take care of before we can leave, but I keep getting distracted by the inside of the Airstream. I’m thinking big-time organization and decorating. And clearly, from the image above, I’m no great interior designer. But the itch is strong.

We’re hoping we’ll spend most of our time outside, either exploring or sitting under the awning, lounging and eating meals and taking in the views. But we will sleep inside, and on rainy days we’ll need to live inside, plus aside for storage in the bed of the truck, we’ll need to store everything we own inside. So inside is on my mind.

Full-timing in a Weekend Trailer

Very few RVs are built for full-time living, and Airstreams especially are unsuitable given their small frames, their curves, and their attention to style. This all means very little storage.

For example, we chose ours because it has even more windows than other models. See the long narrow ones at the curve to the ceiling?

In other Airstreams of this size there are cabinets there—crucial cabinets for pots and pans and dishes. Instead of that, we’re imagining a view of the ocean, the desert, the night sky out those windows. But where do we put kitchen stuff?

I’ve been lurking on Airstream Facebook groups and on Pinterest, gathering ideas for adding shelves, drawers, hooks, bins, anything that will allow us to shove more stuff in the few storage spaces we have.

Some people even rig Elfa closet organizers into their tiny cabinets, which I’m damned temped to try.

I can’t get my hands on any of these ideas though until we get a lot of stuff done to de-house ourselves, and then we’ll move the Airstream to storage near us and see what it is we can fit in it—and then what our lives will be like, to one extent.

We can imagine the outdoor life, but the indoor life is a mystery until we know what we will have with us. Will I be able to take knitting supplies? Is there room for a cast iron skillet? Banjo’s toy box?

Then There’s Decorating

I can’t help but imagine that we’ll be living in a doll house. You pick one rug, two tiny pillows, one teapot. Carefully place them where they’re pretty, but then shake the house as if an earthquake hit it every time it goes down the road.

So, every pretty item needs to have its own storage spot for travel —in spaces already shoved full of essential living items.

Of course, the beautiful ideas I see online are from people who vacation in their Airstreams, so they don’t have to shove everything they own in with the free-standing lamps and potted plants. This blog about decorating an Airstream like ours is especially beautiful, but these folks don’t live full-time in theirs.

It really makes sense to wait until the Airstream is parked near us (in a month, maybe?) before I start planning, much less buying. Oh I love the carrot over the stick though.