August 18, 2011

Before And Now

Lately I've been talking to quite a few people who are debating the mobile lifestyle. Some are in college, some are in debt, some are looking for an adventure or to caste off the shackles of our consumer driven society. One thing that they all have in common is that they have big dreams. One wants a cargo van, one wants a box truck, one is looking into converting a trailer. If I can give one word of warning, which I believe will be echoed by the rest of the mobile community, it is that you will discover your needs only after you have moved to the road. It's easy to dream about putting a fridge in your van, but will you use it? Will you want the space for something else? I guarantee you will learn as you live, so start small and learn to adapt as needed. Your space does not need to be completely set up the day you move in. There is plenty of time to make changes, and you'll want to.

The best way for me to demonstrate the changing needs of the vehicle dweller is through my own before and afters. It's been a little over five months since I moved into my car full time. This is how I started and how it is now.
BEFORE
Not too stealth, right? I wasn't living somewhere that I needed to be super incognito.
NOW
I took off the rest of the hubcaps, got new roof storage, and made black out window blinds
 BEFORE
My front passenger seat was the base for a dresser. It worked, but wasted a lot of room
NOW
I took out the front passenger seat so I have more room. On rainy days I don't have to exit the car to get into bed.

 BEFORE
 Because the drawers were in the front seat I had more room in the beck for my large bed
NOW
I still have a huge bed by car standards, but I've had to adapt storage
NOW
I got a 55 1/2 inch board from Home Depot and set it between the two doors. This extends the back shelf making a good place for my drawers.Later in the fall I may be expanding this.
NOW
A light rope is strung from front to back with hooks, to better organize my kitchen bag, craft bag, and so on. Not too much weight, but it gets them out of the way

So, a lot has changed and a lot has stayed the same. When you're working with limited space, every inch counts. Because of this limited space you will begin to realize how much you can live without. You're priorities will shift and necessity will breed invention like rabbits in Georgia.

Good luck to all!

8 comments:

  1. That is a very good post, before and after.

    You might want to change the string for some metal line, it will hold the weight better and does not weigh any more either.

    Best of luck with the future

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  2. I noticed that your "dresser" on the front seat didn't pan out, but, where did you pick up those Sterlite modular drawers? Your blogging is by far the most beneficial to novices & pros alike!

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  3. Thanks guys!

    xj700, the drawers are from walmart. More expensive then I would have liked but their versatility can't be beat

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  4. Ash,

    Can you explain your black-out shades -- material, where purchased, how the cut out was done to match shape of windows, attachments?

    I'm looking to do something like this too.

    Thanks, bethers

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  5. Ash thanks for the post. I was wondering did you remove the back of the back sleep and sleep with your feet in the trunk area? Thanks again. I enjoy reading your post. I read this one before but just checking if I missed anything.

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  6. Yes! The back seat folds down and opens into the trunk. My feet are in the trunk and my head towards the front of the car. It's actually a lot of room

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