Thursday, October 23, 2014

New Addition: 1965 Chief

I've been into the vintage-trailer hobby long enough to know a good buy when one comes along.

Which explains why I jumped on this 1965 Chief when it came up for sale. The rehab work was already done, and the price was more than reasonable. All I had to do was hook it up, bring it home, and move my own things into it.

The trailer came with a Western theme already started, including tooled-leather fabric on the cabinet doors and chamois-leather used as valances. Seeing as how my blood type is C, for Cowgirl, I knew I would have no trouble furnishing it to my liking.

The Chief's kitchen is in the front. True to the trends of 1965, the appliances are turquoise, and the cabinetry has blond veneer.

There's a nice nook of counter space to the left of the sink. It's just the right size for a small dorm fridge, should I choose to use one. At present, I'm using the space as a bar.

The rear of the trailer features an unusual layout, with a full-length gaucho-bed along the curb wall, and a shorter, kid-length gaucho-bed on the other. Both pull out from the wall. There's plenty of room for my favorite accessory, an electric mini-fireplace heater.

Another element of the unusual layout is the shelving nook in place of an enclosed cabinet. The previous owner trimmed it out with rope, for a nice Western touch.

What used to be a divided utensil drawer above the turquoise icebox has been converted--ingeniously--to a 3-bottle wine rack. The drawer front was removed for the holes to be cut, then trimmed with rope. It was then nailed back over the opening.

The original rear-ceiling light fixture was replaced with this homemade chandelier that uses vintage canning jars as the light globes. 'From something I saw on Pinterest,' I was told. The jars unscrew for safekeeping when the trailer is in transit.

Here's a closeup of the faux-tooled-leather treatment on the cabinet doors. The edges are trimmed with upholstery nails; the tooled-leather fabric is widely available (at Joanne's and WalMart, for instance).

A real chief's name seemed appropriate, so I settled on Crazy Horse.

It's a just-right new home for this crazily painted horse figurine, and my stash of turquoise-feather melamine dinnerware.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Easy Disguise for a Luggable Loo

If you have a camper or trailer without a built-in toilet, you may be familiar with the Luggable Loo. It's a 5-gallon bucket, fitted with a toilet seat and disposable liner, and you use it for those 'discreet personal moments' that sometimes occur in the middle of the night.

Highly practical, inexpensive, but not something you want to look at all the time inside your trailer.

Here's a fast, easy way to disguise it.

Step 1:
Find a vanity stool that will fit over the top of the Loo. I got this one at  Ross store for about $12. (I set the bucket and stool up off the floor in order to take a clear picture.)

Step 2:
Slip a short petticoat or slip with elastic waistband over the top of the vanity stool. An XL waistband fits the circumference of the stool well. Secure with a fashion belt that matches your style--you may have one already in your closet, but if not, a thrift-store trip should fix you right up.

Step 3:
Place the disguised Loo wherever it needs to be--outside for daytime, perhaps. To use, simply lift the dressed-up stool and set aside. Nobody needs to know what's under it!

PS. The best absorbent material I have found for inside the Loo is to use 2-3 cups of wood stove pellets. (Find them at WalMart, Home Depot, Lowe's, etc.) I buy a 40-lb. bag of these compressed pine pellets for $5; I store it in the garage, and take out as much as I need for each camping trip. I camp often, and a 40-lb. bag lasts 2 or 3 years' worth of camping.

Though designed to be burned, wood stove pellets absorb many times their weight in liquid and give off a nice pine scent. They're also far more economical to use for this purpose than commercial RV absorbents, kitty litter, or disposable diapers.

Friday, August 1, 2014

Girl Camping Girl's Radio Interview

We're on Web radio!

Click this link to hear our interview:

Thanks to Ingrid Talpak, host of 'Living With More Style Than Cash,' for looking us up and asking so many good questions about vintage trailers and the passionistas who own and love them. Our favorite subject!

Friday, July 11, 2014

Spotted at the Farm Chicks Campout: Accessories and Neat Ideas

The Farm Chicks Campout (see previous post) takes place the first weekend of June, during the Farm Chicks Antiques Show. It's always a great venue for picking up ideas from others.

The matched set of tote bags with vintage campers is mine. I love these bags, from, for organizing batches of items in a grab-and-go way.

The surfboard-shaped rug belongs to Miss Mig, who uses it as part of the lavish decor for her Hawaiian  trailer, Island Girl.

The spare tire cover on Miss Sylvia's trailer is made from a giant crocheted doily.

Miss Izzy's rig is a former RV, torn down to the frame and rebuilt into a gypsy wagon. It has a back porch! With railings made from the side rails of a daybed.

Miss Linda dressed up her trailer's kitchen by applying fabric to the sides of the drawers with ModPodge. Must make a note to do this.

The ceiling is covered in embossed wallpaper, painted silver to look like pressed tin.

Miss Joyce installed a faux grandfather clock inside her trailer's door. How awesome is that?!

And who says old TV trays have to stay looking that way? Miss Carol Jo's trailer sports this dandy repainted number that goes with her cowgirl theme. (FYI, a TV tray is one of handiest things you can keep in your camping outfit.)

See anything you like? Let us know!

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Girl Camping for 'Farm Chicks 2014'

For the last 6 years, we've used the annual Farm Chicks Antiques Show in Spokane, Washington, as a reason to camp out together at a nearby state park. This year was no exception, yet was exceptional if only for one reason:

The weather was perfect! No rain, no gusty afternoon wind, no cold nights…not always the case for the first weekend of June. Nobody had to get out the tarp!

I arrived a day early with Iron Pony, just to stretch out my camping time along the Spokane River. A few others did likewise. That's one bonus of planning a gathering at a public park as opposed to private property--you can come early and/or stay longer without inconvenience.

The campsites offer room to spread out, so we did! This is Miss Mig's setup with Island Girl--part of it, that is, because it includes a separate bar and entertainment area, as well as a dishwashing station.

It's a natural drop-in spot, because it's so inviting.

We were thrilled to see Miss Sherry's labor of love, Shanty Shack, all dressed up and ready to be admired after a laborious rehab. Sherry has so many talents that we probably haven't seen more than a portion of them yet!

Miss Karen and Driving Ms. Daisy always have style and smile to spare. Karen made dinner for the early-bird gang--a nice treat.

I'll be back later with more of the Farm Chicks '14 photos, but for now, must go get a few other things done!

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Perfect R&R for Memorial Day Weekend

As much as I hate to say it, I usually spend Memorial Day Weekend doing yard work. There's a lot of it to do, because Mr. Ed and I live on acreage that likes to grow, grow, grow.

This year was different! Miss Debbie hosted a private campout at her splendid country home in northern Idaho, and the lucky guests, including yours truly, had an absolutely wonderful time of easy R&R. We set up our trailers on her expansive and perfectly groomed yard, and had her stocked fishing pond all to ourselves!

We rowed the pond, practiced fly fishing, and even caught 'Big Walter,' the pond's resident lunker. We put him back, of course, but he did get to see daylight for a few moments!

Debbie and her husband, Denny, spoiled us the whole time. Denny started our morning campfires and coffee, and then went inside the house to make us breakfast, which was served in the great room overlooking the pond and yard. And he refused to let us do the dishes! That's Miss Kim, above, warming up by the fire.

Check out the lovely shaded area for picnic tables. It was better than being at any public park.

Our thanks to Deb (shown above) and Denny for their gracious hospitality and pampering. What a treat!

Friday, April 25, 2014

My Newest Old Trailer: 1972 Red Dale, 'Meadow'

I pictured it, held out for it, and it finally happened: A mid-sized vintage trailer with bathroom, well cared for and ready for camping, came up for sale in my local area for $1,500 or less. This is her, backed into a soon-to-be-shaded parking spot at my place.

I knew I wasn't going to get 'perfect' in that price range--as you can see, she could use some new paint--but what I did get is a 17-foot 1972 Red Dale with a lot going for her. (Coincidence: My cowgirl-biker trailer, Iron Pony, is also a 1972 Red Dale. But smaller, at 14 feet.)

The previous owners, a retired couple named Ethel and Dave, had upgraded all the trailer's systems and  painted the interior a crisp white and apple-green. Ethel made the matching curtains. So this is what I saw when I opened the door. CLEAN was the word. Dave demo'd the water, battery, electric, and propane systems for me. He said they would work, and they do.

He produced a clean title and a spare tire, we made our deal, and I drove the trailer home. (I know you're dying to ask the question, so I'll divulge: I offered and paid $1,000.)

It took me about three quick trips into the house to get the trailer decorated, because truth to tell, I love green and have collected it forever.

Hubby Dearest, Mr. Ed, took one look and came up with the right name for this trailer:


I love how the various shades of lime, apple, and grass greens update the original avocado green of the stove.

 And I couldn't resist adding some dandelion decals to the little bathroom--for 'going potty in the weeds.'

Meadow will be going on her maiden Girl Camping voyage in a few weeks. Then she'll be going to Girl Camp for the summer.

Fun ahead!

Monday, April 7, 2014

Impromptu Spring Fling

I love it when a no-plan comes together.

First, Miss Mig bought this Aristocrat LoLiner and had to make a 10-hour trip to pick it up. She took Miss Sherry with her. The perfect layover spot, for the trip back, was at the same campground where the three of us each keep a trailer for the winter.

No way could I miss this! I hopped in my truck and 2 hours later, arrived at the campground just minutes after they pulled in with the trailer.

Mig (on the right) set the table, Sherry (on the left) rustled us up some grub, I brought over a bottle of wine, and we inaugurated the 'naked' trailer right then and there.

Miss Anna, who owns the RV park we love so much, got a trailer tour the next morning. This trailer will be for Mig's mom, Dickie, who loves to camp with us.

In her 90s, Dickie reigns as our oldest Girl Camper and possibly the youngest-at-heart. Yes, friends, you are looking at a gal born in the 1920s! This is where Mig gets her spirit!

Here are Mig's trailers, side by side. The huge banner says 'Happy Camper Girl.' Mig is an artist by trade, and probably whipped that banner up in her sleep!

(Tip: Pay close attention to the first photo in this post--it's the one and only time you are going to see this trailer unadorned.)

I took advantage of the beautiful sunshine by pulling out a table and chairs in front of my trailer, The Big Chief. (The Big Chief is a behemoth of a trailer, 31 feet long and weighing in at a tonnage of 5,600 lbs. with nothing in it.)

Sherry set herself up behind the trailers, for a view of the roaring Salmon River.

Sherry's dog Jada had a view, too, but from inside on her cozy bed.

Sherry's trailer, Pistol Pete, has lots of big windows that afford a river view. It always seems light and bright inside, even on cloudy days. Like The Big Chief, Pete makes an excellent semi-permanent camping cabin.

Meanwhile, back outside, we each contributed to a drinks-and-eats bar on a table set up over one of the trailers' hitches. I love this means of providing for a meal between camp breakfast and communal dinner. Everyone can graze on what she likes and no one has to go to a great deal of effort.

We also had campfires, enjoyed visiting with Anna, went for hikes and short local drives, and paid visits to our favorite local emporiums in historic White Bird, Idaho.

All in all, a perfectly lovely time that evolved without a plan. So glad we all acted on the urge to GO, and get hooked up!