My husband and I just purchased a small camper. I would love to hear your space-saving and organizing ideas for in a camper or RV. Also any camping tips in general that you might have.
April from Knoxville, TN
Hi, April! Congratulations on the purchase of your camper. We have a pop up camper ourselves and find that, although it's wonderful to be able to store most of our cookware and camping gear in one place and not have to unload it every time we come home, there's certainly a limited amount of space. We have friends who also own a pop up and they bring along one of those plastic Rubbermaid three or four drawer systems for storing their clothes.
We use a large plastic tote and keep it in the camper to store paper towels, popcorn, aluminum foil, cooking spray, etc. We store our towels in a smaller tote which we also leave in the camper. Sheets (which we bought at the thrift store) are left on the bunks until they need cleaning. We have bought all our camping cookware, flatware, etc at yard sales and so we leave those in the camper so that we don't have to stock up before each trip.
Have a great time with your new camper! (07/01/2006)
-Use under the bed Rubbermaid tubs that will fit into small areas.
-Plastic Ziploc bags
-Hanging shoe organizers to hold bathroom items.
We have camped for over 30 years and I use lots of Ziploc bags and plastic tubs of all sizes to hold items. Our trailer has an under the bed compartment that I store a lot of things in tubs - label everything. I store all my decorative items together (party lights, wind chimes, or anything decorative for the outside), all the cooking items are stored together and labeled. I found a hanging laundry bag that is mesh and has a hanger on it; it can hang outside or inside (if space is available).
Check at your local Dollar stores and Walmart stores for plastic tubs and storage units that might suit your needs. The RV section of some stores are expensive on items for camping so I improvise or create an item that will work for our camping experience. Plans for a portable picnic table can be found at http://www.Familyfun.Com, we have two of these tables and they are very handy at the campsite.
Have fun! (07/01/2006)
First off, never throw away a plastic container till you've looked it over twice to see if it has other uses. I save kitty litter containers and cut out the front, saving the handle and the "bucket" part. Lots of small items will fit in there and are very portable (like bathroom items you may want to take to the shower house in a campground or store away after use), they are good to store toilet paper in a steamy bath too. The whole ones, cleaned well, will hold flour, sugar or other dry goods that might get bugs otherwise.
Those mesh bags produce come in are great to hang onions and potatoes on a hook inside or out. They are also good for a bar of soap to hang in the shower. That way they are a combination scrubby and soap, or just a place to keep the soap dry when not in use. Laundry detergent boxes are good to store stuff too. Ziploc bags and plastic boxes are great but this stuff has been paid for already, use it till it can't be used any more! (07/06/2006)
By carla bledsoe
My best idea is for storing/organizing the kitchen. We do all of our cooking outdoors so I wanted my kitchen items outside. I purchase two of the Sterlite 4 drawer wheel carts. All of our kitchen items fit neatly in these (plates, cups, silverware, kitchen gadgets, plastic baggies, tin foil, napkins, etc). When we get to the campsite, we just pull them out of the camper and put them under the awning outside. Makes unpacking and packing a breeze. (07/26/2006)
By Donna Z.
We have a very small fifth wheel so storage is always a challenge. Our interests, archaeology and biology, take us far and wide and we are often far away from stores for days or weeks so we try to stay organized and prepared. We use soft side briefcases, bought at garage sales and thrift stores for $1-5, to organize and store many necessities in the truck and trailer. They are durable and very easy to stash. We have the basics: first aid, picnic, tools, etc., bags in the truck and trailer. We also store reference books, maps, camera gear, biology and archaeology materials, grand kid toys, etc., in the bags, as well. Each bag is tagged with it's contents.
This storage method is certainly not decorative or "cool", but is incredibly useful and serves our needs very well.
I just found a canvas zip bag at the thrift store. It was originally made to hold one of those NuWave domed cookers, but it is just the exact size and shape of an ottoman. I'm going to store extra towels, sheets, etc and use it as a foot rest. I also stuff all my throw pillows with sweaters or other out of season clothes and soft items. You might leave a little note inside a cupboard listing what each pillow is full of. (01/01/2009)
I have a collection of large and small handbags. I store things in them and hang them from the vanagon metal bar that raises up when you pop the top. It is a great vertical storage system. When I lower the top and all are slid to the side behind the driver's seat, there is no vision block for driving. (02/15/2009)
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