Saturday, September 25, 2010

cork floor

The floor is in, and we love it! Scott got up at six this morning and started applying glue to the floor board and tiles. You are supposed to wait two hours to let the surface of the glue dry before installing. At eight Scott and I started installation with some help from Quinn. The glue feels dry, but when you put the tile down and pound on it with a big hammer all around, it sticks, really hard. The middle ones went on very quickly, after which we took some time cutting out the shaped pieces along the edge. There really is no fast way to do that, but to make a pattern piece with paper, trim it until it is exactly right, and then cut out the cork tiles using the pattern. After shaving a little more cork off here and there, you have a piece that fits beautifully.

This piece along the door frame was the hardest.

And these ones.

The cork pattern looks like this up close. Isn't it cool?

Here is the kitchen back splash installed. I wasn't sure if I liked the decorative pattern, but it sure hides finger prints. I polished the sleek side half way, until I realized that it will get dirty again when we install the counter top.

kitchen backsplash

Scott and Bryan worked on the stainless steel for the kitchen backsplash late into the night after pack meeting. Here is the report from Bryan.

" if we didn't have to buy such a big piece of stainless steel this would be easier"

Drilling holes to get ready to cut out the window opening with the jigsaw in the kitchen backsplash.

Nearly done. We said we would be home at 10:30 so we had better hurry ( work faster Scott).

Some gave all ( A positive type) for the project ( darn I knew I should have brought leather gloves!)

Marie here:
The backsplash is installed, and the kitchen pieces are built back in the trailer. We are now ready for the counter top. More pictures to come. Stay tuned!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

The "before"

These are the pictures the previous owner took for the ebay auction. You can see a lot has already changed.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

camper " extraction" trek

Bryan took these pictures and wrote the captions. The pictures are not in the correct order, but you'll get the idea.

The large cabinet in the dumpster at the campground in Redding CA- after we dumped it in there at 10 pm the night before ( unbeknown to all the other campers) except the one who was driving in late that night and saw us crossing the road the cabinet in hand- looking like "deer in the headlights" except hefting a cabinet.

We knew we would be successful when we stayed at the " winners" casino ( a real dump)

Mercury(Bryan and Karine's Sprinter) pulling Snowball 2- at the campground in Redding CA

Scott passing a corvette while pulling the camper- " boy you can travel fast with these light campers"

Scott's first time using the stove- making cinnamon rolls ( the stove runs a little hot)

Again, we are very thankful to Bryan for helping this all happen.

A little repost on the progress...
The fabric came today, but the upholsterer is too busy and can't get to recovering our couch bed and dinette until October. We have decided the colorful tambour doors had to go, so they are getting a new coat of paint in light grey. It looks much better for the space. The stainless sheet for the kitchen back splash should be here any time. The cork floor tiles got here on Monday, and they are in the process of being acclimatized.
Here is the camper we should have built. It even has a bath tub. Maybe next time. Thanks, Yu-kun.

Monday, September 20, 2010

overhead storage

Randall, the counter top guy finally showed up with samples Friday night. They looked very cool, but I forgot to take pictures. Asha has been our faithful photographer, and we don't get any pictures when she isn't around. We chose a dark grey concrete look for the kitchen and whiter concrete for the dinette. The ply wood will be covered with a thin layer of concrete. The surface will be textured, and then a durable clear coat will be applied. We will get a great look while the weight will be kept light. We are very excited.

The over head storage with tambour doors was the next project we worked on. Scott and Jerome worked on painting it with the same color as the walls. The tambour doors and the structure were missing from our trailer, so we bought the structure from the Airstream in seattle, and bought some light colored wood tambour online.

The side pieces got painted silver.

The tambour got painted in some cheerful colors.

This is how they turned out. It looks pretty in this picture, but we are having second thoughts about the stripe. It is busy and a bit too much in the small space. We decided to install it the way it is, and re-evaluate once everything else is in place.

Scott's parents, not pictured, and Karine and Bryan, in the picture below, stopped by to see our progress. It is always fun to show other people what we have been doing. Bryan and Karine have been fantastic supporters.

It is raining today, and Scott has found a leak in the front. We will have to work on repairing that.

Friday, September 17, 2010


Remember the closet?

It looks like this after the birch contact paper was applied. We got it from and was very happy with the quality. It made the closet look just like the birch furniture I have from IKEA.

Scott really did take the bathroom out.

The toilet pieces and the shower pan got two coats of POR15.

It was a little tricky to apply an even coat to it. The paint is very thin and it runs if there is any excess applied. The side of the toilet kept getting streaky marks. We are hoping the third coat will smooth the bumps out, but Scott is going to call the customer support in the meantime to see if we should sand it down and then rent a sprayer to apply the next coat.

The counter top guy isn't finished with the samples. No progress there. We are leaning more and more towards the poured concrete look, and can't wait to see what he comes up with. We will put the kitchen back in and make progress on the bathroom during the weekend, before the cork floor tiles come on Monday.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

upholstry fabric

We got many fabric samples from KOVI fabrics. There is a couch we love in CB2 here and we ordered a lot of grey tones hoping to copy that.

The top three picks in the trailer against birch, and aluminum.

We think the middle one is the winner, but the left one does look closer to the CB2 couch.
The middle fabric looks like this up close.

Scott ended up taking the bathroom apart as well. He is planning to paint most of the surfaces with POR15 epoxy paint.

Next up... The counter top guy is coming with samples tonight. We asked him to make a poured concrete look and a glossy white look because we couldn't decide. We can't wait!
In the meantime, Scott has covered all the faux wood surfaces with birch contact paper, and they are ready to be installed.

Stay tuned!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

windows and dinette

It was a beautiful Saturday, and we made some progress on the trailer.

First off, all the windows got new screens.

The old paint got scrubbed off of the screen frame with Premium Paint & Epoxy Remover. We first applied the paint remover, let it sit for a few minutes, and then wiped the paint off with paper towel. It took a few tries to get the paint completely off. But then Scott tried scrubbing with the steel wool and the paint removal together, and it went quicker. Once all the paint was off, we polished it with steel wool. Here is how it looks against the newly painted wall.

Then we worked on the dinette. The tambour doors and frame got spray painted with Rust-Olium's Clean Metal Primer, Rust-Oleum's Ultra Cover Metallic Aluminum, and a coat of polyurethane.

Here is what it looks like assembled.

Scott cut ply wood to fit the curvature of the front, attached it to the frame, and now we have a dinette base.

We are now waiting for the shipment of the cork floor, sample fabric for the dinette, and birch contact paper for the cabinets. Randle, our counter top guy, is working on samples for the kitchen counter top and dinette table.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Introducing Argosy

Camping has never been our thing, but we are hoping to change that. Being in the great outdoors in Yellowstone this summer has left us wanting to do more. Watching our kids enjoy themselves in the nature was priceless. We decided getting a travel trailer would make things easier and help us get out.

Brother-in-law, Bryan, found an ebay listing in Sacramento for a 1978 20 foot Argosy. We knew we could trust him when he said it looks to be in good shape. He owns the exact same model himself and is very knowledgeable about vintage trailers. Scott finalized the purchase on ebay after he talked to the owner on the phone, and he and Bryan set off to go get it that weekend. 17 hours each way, but they came back in two and a half days. Bryan kindly drove his car because ours doesn't have a towing package yet (Totota said they are releasing their 2011 towing package in a few weeks). The trailer is in great condition, and all the appliances work. The dinette and sofa bed are missing because it was used as an office at one point, but the sale price reflected that and we got a good deal. The previous owner had big plans for restoring it, but he got tired and bought a RV instead.

We drove over to Seattle last weekend to purchase some furniture from a guy who is restoring a 34 foot Airstream. He was getting rid of everything inside since he is going to put in all new furniture. We got the dinette and couch bed that we will refinish and reupholster. We also bought three over head bins that we will use the tambour door mechanism of. Ours is missing that completely. We are excited that we don't have to have those pieces made from scratch. The guy's oven was deeper and newer, so we got that as well.

This is the state of our garage right now. What you see closest to you is the kitchen cabinet. We bought birch contact paper to cover it. The two pieces on the right and the pillows in the back make the dinette. We spray painted the frame and tambour doors last night, and it is looking nice and fresh. The upholstery fabric samples have been ordered, and we will have the dinette and bed reupholstered as soon as we finalize the fabric choice.

Here is Scott painting late into the night. Two coats of primer and two coats of Benjamin Moore "Old Prairie". Scott is facing the kitchen where there will be a sink, fridge, stove, oven, and over head storage. Behind him will be a sofa bed. The camera is standing where there will be a dinette that converts to more sleeping area. There is a three piece bathroom in the back with a shower, toilet, and sink. The tall wood paneling you see on the right is a wardrobe, which will also be covered in birch contact paper.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

T-shirt resizing - tie dye

before: size 6-8 and boxy

after: size 5 slim

before: size 12 and boxy

after: size 8 and girly

I traced the shape of Kai's Old Navy size 5 shirt for his, and used Milimili's cap sleeve pattern for Asha's.

T-shirt resizing - boxy to girly

At the end of the school year, Jerome brought home a men's size small t-shirt from the D.A.R.E. graduation, that he had no interest in wearing. Asha said she wanted it, so it got dropped in the resize pile. Fast forward to this week, and I realized that Jerome and Asha could use some t-shirts. I dug in the resize pile and came up with a few things.

This one came out the best because the sleeves were wide enough for some puffy details. I used a Milimili pattern in size 140. More shirts using this pattern here and here.