RV Renovation

Controlled Chaos: RV Renovation Part 1

Christy10 comments6922 views

Just when life on the road was finding it’s routine, we felt a subconscious need to create controlled chaos.

While camper shopping, we walked through many different models. Having never actually spent the night in a camper made any purchase a shot in the dark. However, we were up for the challenge. We wanted a fifth wheel camper for better stability while driving and taller ceilings, and eventually went with a 2014 Keystone Mountaineer. It had very little wear and tear and the floor plan that best suited our lifestyle.

2014 Keystone Mountaineer 310RET
2014 Keystone Mountaineer 310RET

This particular camper smelled good. Trust me, after walking through several used models…well, they just smelled.

We didn’t LOVE the decor package, but it was better than most. I’m surprised at how little the options have changed over the years. Many RVs still have what I call “the swirl” design on the exterior, and the interiors are often made with dark-colored fabrics and wood veneers. While our camper was less than 2 years old, it felt dark and the furniture was camper-esque.

After two months living in our home on wheels, it’s time to take the plunge and begin making it feel like home. It all started with one of the recliners breaking and gouging the wall behind it. We noticed the damage when we arrived to San Antonio and knew that the recliners were going to have to go. This past weekend we decided to replace all the furniture in the living space.

In addition, we’re sanding and painting the walls and the cabinets. We’ve been hard at work for 4 days now and still have quite a bit of work to go. I’m questioning whether it will all be worth it. Would we have enjoyed things as they were? Will living in a dust-encrusted home for several days be worth the results? We thought we’d share the before pictures to give you a glimpse into our humble abode. Once we’re finished you can help us decide if it’s better or worse.

The view of the rear entertainment center and living space. Super bright and cheery right?!?

Rear entertainment

The floor design is kind of fun. It’s linoleum, but has a more updated look. Check out those valances. Saucy!!! The sink and the stove both come with inserts that allow for full countertops. We typically only place these on when we’re traveling, but it’s a nice feature!


Don’t get jealous, I know you want a mountain scene depicted in the woodwork of your home. C’mon… it’s all the rage. You can see here the true color of the cabinetry is a rich wood, not as dark as in some previous pics. And yes, this model comes with our very own throw pillows that match the valances!

Kitchen Slide

This set of recliners is what started all the renovation madness. Now that I’m looking at this photo, the right recliner even looks broken here. I actually enjoyed kicking back putting my wine glass in the cup holder and relaxing. However, these guys and the sleeper sofa took a trip to the Goodwill and we won’t be seeing them again.


The entertainment center had a few modifications before we left in order to fit a bigger TV. Under the TV is an electric fireplace. Which is a nice source of electric heat vs. our propane heating system. To the right of the television is (was) the sleeper sofa. When moving it out, we realized that the sofa frame lays flat and there was an attached air mattress that was the mattress for the bed. Interesting concept.

ent center

The opposite wall from the TV is more storage and the stairs up to the bedroom and bathroom. That’s a work in progress as well. Can’t wait to show you those pics in another post.


Well, that concludes the before images. Once we dig our way out of the dust and debris, we will give you a complete tour of the after.


  1. i can’t wait to see the after work. It already looks homey to me. It looks like you two are having a lot of fun doing a little of everything. Continue to be safe!

  2. As I read this, it strikes me that the two of you are either 1) big-time change agents, 2) OCD, 3) a little bored, 4) talented interior designers . . . or a little of all of the aforementioned. Love seeing the before pictures. Anxious to see the after pictures. Where are y’all now?

  3. Having painted our dark cabinets white, I would say the difference will, no doubt, lift spirits and dispel darkness. Way to go. Can’t wait to see the finished results.

  4. Hello just wanted to say congrats u both did a beautiful job. No matter what u do if u work together everything will work out. My husband and I are trying to fix our rv but ours needs alot of work and we have 3 kids so we want it to be comfy and something we can call home ourselfs we r used to living with in laws and we need our space.i hope it goes well hope i can share my reno. With u all someday because u did inspired some ideas for me u did a great job once a again.

  5. Hi Christy, My hubby and I are on the verge of buying a camper and hitting the road for a year or more. Our favorite models have been the Mountaineer series also. And, I agree, I can’t believe how dated camper decor still is. And apart from the price, the higher end ones are too cheesy in their decor for my taste. I already told my guy that if I will be living in it, we’re renovating it to make it our home. Yours is beautiful and bright. I don’t see photos of the bedroom though. Also, can you confirm, the flooring, carpet, dark glass & hardware in the cabinets are the original? It looks like you painted the walls, cabinets and changed out the furniture. If they’re in good shape, that’s much easier than putting in new flooring. My concern is painting over the walls because the camper we’re looking at does not appear to be removable wall paper. It’s a cheesy, textured wall. Also, wasn’t the original furniture bolted down? Did you do the same with the new furniture, and is it necessary? Also, is the new couch a sofa bed? If not, what is your substitute for the air mattress that you took out? Or you don’t want sleepovers?

    1. Hello Erin – Sounds like you guys are on the verge of exciting adventures! We highly recommend buying a used, good condition model. The value of campers depreciates so significantly. If you can find one that has been well-maintained you can always make it look like a home on the inside! The flooring, carpet, cabinets (with dark glass) and hardware are all the original. Our walls were also a wallpaper that has a light texture to it. We used a high quality primer and high quality paint on top of that. Flooring is actually not too difficult to replace especially if you are changing out the furniture anyway. We did not bolt down our new furniture. We have a couple of straps for loose items and we use foam rollers to keep things from moving when we travel. Our new couch is not a sofa bed. That would be a nice feature to have. We purchased a quality queen size air mattress that we set up in the living room floor for guests. We haven’t painted/renovated the bedroom at this time. Good luck with your camper search! Thanks for your comments!

Leave a Response