Friday, December 8, 2023


Easy ways to decorate your RV without adding much weight

The very first thing Hubby says when I mention decorating something in our RV’s interior is, “How much will it weigh?” The big difference between decorating your stix-n-brix home and decorating your RV is the weight consideration. I don’t even stop to think about how much a big potted plant will weigh when I bring it into our stationary home. But I certainly think twice before bringing something so heavy into our RV.

“Light” RV decorating

No, I’m not talking about replacing the light fixtures in your rig. When I say “light decorating” I’m thinking about ways you can brighten your RV’s interior without adding excessive poundage to the rig’s overall weight.

Light decorating means using specific products in ways you may not have considered before. Or perhaps your light decorating will introduce you to products you didn’t even know existed—or you’ve never thought of purchasing.

The “blah” problem

Why do folks consider redecorating the interior of their RVs? One reason may be because many RVs feature all brown interiors: brown furniture, brown cupboards, brown floors, brown window shades, brown countertops, and brown bedspreads. Have a newer RV? Then you can just reread the previous description inserting “gray” in place of “brown.”

Another reason to redecorate your RV’s interior is to add your own personality to the space. Just as in your stix-n-brix home, RV owners want their living area to reflect their likes, interests, and, well, personality. The monochromatic color schemes featured in many RVs reflect very little personality until its owner introduces their own.

Why do RV manufacturers stick with the “one color” design choice? Because neutrals are supposed to appeal to the largest audience. All I know is that after living in our RV for any length of time, I’m craving some color, some pizazz, something! Anything that isn’t brown. Or gray.

(Note: If you like your RV’s interior there’s absolutely no reason for you to try and “fix it.” Save your time and money for something else. Really! My suggestions are for those of us who want to bring a bit of life to our tired-looking rigs. No judgment here if you opt to keep things the way they are. You do you!)

Adding pizazz without additional weight

  • Switch it out in the kitchen. We all need towels, dishcloths, and hot pads in our RV kitchen. Take a look at yours with a critical eye. Could more colorful options replace your current kitchen linens? Maybe it’s time to wander down the linen aisle in a nearby store. Or look for bright, happy alternatives online. (Perhaps this set of dish towels will do the trick?)
  • The same goes for the dinette cushions. If you carefully remove the fabric from the benches, you can use that old fabric as a template for newly purchased fabric that’s more your style. Remember, though, if new linens come in, those old ones need to come out of the RV. That way, the weight differential remains neutral.
  • Switch it out in the bathroom. Last year I finally decided to ditch our (eye roll) brown, ratty bath towels for bright yellow and neon green ones. The bonus? Now Hubby and I can easily identify our own towels, even with shampoo in our eyes.
  • Switch it out in the bedroom. Ditto for what I just said for the kitchen and bath. Just because your RV came with a “deluxe, decorator bedspread” doesn’t mean you’re obliged to keep it. (Really. I read the fine print and it’s OK to get something you truly love instead.) Check this bedding set out. It would look so nice in your RV’s bedroom! The same goes for a bedside floor rug.

RV redecorating with minimal weight

  • Easy, quick fixes. A couple of toss pillows on your sofa (maybe these?), along with a lap blanket for snuggling, can easily add color and interest to your RV’s interior. The same goes for colorful or coordinating pillows on your bed. Pillows do not add significant weight to your rig. Just keep in mind that those pillows will need a resting place when you crawl into bed, so don’t go overboard on pillow purchases!

Lightweight RV decorating ideas

  • Photos. I absolutely love having photos of family and friends. The pictures bring back fond memories and also prompt me to stay in touch while Hubby and I travel. The problem? Where to put all of those framed pictures? Our kids provided the answer this past Christmas! They gave Hubby and me a smart photo frame. I’d seen these gadgets before but never realized how great it is to own one! Now all of our photos automatically download to one frame that continuously loops pictures of kids, grandkids, friends, and our past RV adventures. The added weight to our RV is much less than several individually-framed pictures. (Less to dust, as well.)
  • Fabric, ribbons, paper, and glue. A little pop of design goes a long way, especially in a small space (like your RV.) Take those window shades, for example. Did you know that you can apply an eye-catching strip of ribbon across the bottom of the shade? Just use fabric glue. Or try self-stick designer contact paper or washi tape on your RV’s shades. (Hint: For better adhesion make sure the application surface is completely free of dust and grease.)

Bonus idea: I have a friend who wound washi tape around her cupboard door handles to transform them. The result? The handles are bright and cheerful, and she absolutely loves it! It was less expensive than painting or replacing the door handles, although those are options as well.

  • Remember first grade? I cut poster board into the size of placemats. I glued a collage of my favorite photos to the placemat. After the glue dried, I applied clear Contact paper over the entire placemat to secure the photos and keep spills from damaging it. Now I can “join friends for lunch” even when we’re miles away in our RV. (Hint: You can also have the placemats laminated at a nearby teacher or office supply store if you choose.)
  • If you enjoy sewing, you can choose two different fabric designs and sew your own reversible placemats. The great benefit is that you can size the placemats to fit your RV dining table, which is usually smaller than your table at home. “Store” the placemats right on the tabletop for a burst of color and personality in the galley area. Or make a colorful tablecloth for your RV table.
  • Check out vinyl clings and removable or permanent vinyl sheets. If you own a Cricut you are already aware of the myriad of projects you can do with vinyl. Even if you don’t own a Cricut machine, you can hand-cut the clings to cover RV windows for privacy or put the clings on glass cupboard fronts for added interest and design. You can hand-cut shapes or linear strips to apply to backsplashes, too. Check out the wide variety of vinyl here.
  • Magnets are fun. Whether you collect them or make some for yourself, magnets can add interest and color to your RV’s interior. Check to see if a magnet will adhere to your refrigerator. We had our stainless-steel RV fridge for two years (two whole years!) before I discovered that magnets actually do stick to it! If your fridge won’t hold a magnet, you can display your collection on an oversized cookie sheet that covers your stove burners when you’re not cooking.
  • The grandkids and I enjoy using Mod Podge to decoupage bits of colorful tissue paper to tin cans (for pencil holders) or inexpensive glass vases. I recently discovered that Mod Podge makes a spray-on acrylic sealer. I plan to give it a try.
  • Scrapbook paper can also add a designer touch along with a punch of color to your RV. I cut scrapbook paper to fit around my kitchen utensil container. Then, I had the strip laminated and then curled and taped the end together to form a “tube” that slips right over the container. I plan to make a few more with differently designed paper. I can store the covers flat under towels in a drawer when not in use. What a quick and easy way to change things up for the seasons, holidays, and more.
  • Decorating the walls adjacent to slide-outs can be challenging. I may have found a solution. You can have your very own favorite quote or personalized saying made into wall graphics. Check these out.  Talk about adding personality with little to no weight! You can even design a saying that fits in those awkward, empty spaces in your RV’s bathroom!

How about you? What projects (big or small) have you done to bring personality into your RV without adding significant weight? Share with us, please!


Gail Marsh
Gail Marsh
Gail Marsh is an avid RVer and occasional work camper. Retired from 30+ years in the field of education as an author and educator, she now enjoys sharing tips and tricks that make RVing easier and more enjoyable.



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Adorable Deplorable (@guest_165209)
1 year ago

Great ideas.

Karen Bates (@guest_164600)
1 year ago

We are talking about painting the walls. Any words of wisdom for that project?

Gail (@guest_165213)
1 year ago
Reply to  Karen Bates

Haven’t attempted it but others may have some advice for you. Let me know how it goes.

RV Staff
1 year ago
Reply to  Karen Bates

Hi, Karen. I looked in our archives and found this post from our beloved Gary Bunzer, the RV Doctor, who sadly was taken from us by COVID in April 2020. He is sorely missed by all who knew him and who attended his RV seminars for so many years. Anyway, here’s a link to his brief article, “Can I paint and paper my RV’s interior?” I hope that helps a little. Good luck! 🙂 –Diane

SUSANNE A SHANLEY (@guest_164577)
1 year ago

We recently needed to replace the sub floor structure because of sagging from a broken support beam. BIG job, as my husband did it all.
I chose new vinyl floor that was bright wood look, a new cabinet that is straight against the wall…a stovetop instead of the oven stove combo.
I arranged the dinette differently, traded couches. Bought recliners…removed most of the old fashioned 5th wheel vallances, and sewed some sheer curtains.
The space is more inviting, furnishings has less weight than what came with the rig, and much brighter.
Next project might just be painting a more cream wall color!

Bugsy (@guest_164555)
1 year ago

I really need visuals when it comes to decorating. Not just descriptions.

Kit Vargas (@guest_164553)
1 year ago

Pillow covers and throws for the living area. I change them out seasonally and they are easy to store in a flat bin under my coach. Instead of wall hangings or pictures, I use vinyl graphic sayings in our bedroom. One above the head of the bed and one on a side wall.

Diane Mc (@guest_164552)
1 year ago

God bless all you creative people. I wasn’t in that line when I was born…lol. Fortunately, even though our motorhome is a 2002, it came in gray, beige/gold, black interior. Our counter tops are light tones & cabinets Pecan/Maple so those light up the MH. Happen to like gray tones. I hated all the motorhomes than were in flowery prints and/or blue tones. Our first gasser was like that, although pretty subtle. And no offense to those that like that. I’ve always been more of a modern girl. We take 2 to 3 trips per year about 4 months total. I’m sure if we fulltimed might consider upping our decorator game.

Donna (@guest_164544)
1 year ago

I’ve made curtains and matching cushion covers for the dinette, curtains over the jack knife sofa, curtains for the bedroom and a quilt for the bed. I’ve also hung cross stitch projects and pictures in the RV using command strips and the light weight frames from the dollar store.

Mary Masters (@guest_164531)
1 year ago

I made a wine cork backsplash. I measured the area and got thin board cut to fit. I then glued all of the wine corks on the board. The board is hung up with just four screws and then I put a wine cork over top of the screws.

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