We’ve been putting some blood, sweat, and tears into our little Pierre these past few weeks.
The good news is we applied a fresh coat of paint to the wall, drawers, cabinets, and even hinges and knobs.
The bad news is all of that work was declared null after a few rainstorms exposed some serious water damage to all four corners of the interior. We were so bummed upon discovering this! We went into this project hoping to only deal with aesthetics in an attempt lighten any stress load for the months preceding our wedding. However, we do know that we would love to flip more trailers in the future, so we are choosing to look at this as a blessing in disguise. Not only is it better to have found this kind of damage during our renovating process as opposed to being out on the road in the wettest area of the US, but the experience will give us an opportunity to learn the structural troubleshooting we would need to know for any business prospects in the future.
Having said that, we’ll show the process we had prior to the water damage and where we’re at with this huge DIY project right now.
So this is how it looked when we purchased it. Cute, right? We loved it, don’t get us wrong. It was just a little too yellow for us. And not the bright sunny kind of yellow, either. This yellow looked like the sun-faded, house-of-a-long-time-smoker kind of yellow. We wanted it to feel bright, airy, and open, so we opted for white. We really didn’t go into this with intentions of changing too much aside from the color.
Here’s where we left off before the rain damage happened. We painted everything that was once yellow, white, and all the brown trim, turquoise. More details of this design process are discussed below.
WHOA. I know, right? It was NOT easy tearing down these walls after spending a few days painting everything with precision, let me tell you. Each rip pulled at my heart. But once we discovered mold and severe hidden water damage, we knew were ultimately making the right call to gut this entire thing and start entirely from scratch.
So let’s talk about the details! I’ll first discuss what we were working with before the damage, then what we found when ripping everything apart.
Spray Painting the Knobs and Hinges:
We originally had plans to replace all of the knobs and hinges because they weren’t too pretty. But then I remembered we had purchased Krylon copper spray paint from Hobby Lobby a few months ago and I tried it out just to see how it looked, and I’m glad I did. This probably saved us a good $60 at least.
LEFT: Before, RIGHT: After
TOP: After, BOTTOM: Before
This stuff is great! They looked brand new after applying just one coat, and it dried quickly. As for longevity, I’m not sure how it withstands. We did spray some sealer over it, but I recommend getting a high gloss sealer because the one we bought dulled the shiny copper look. (Example below)
(Left: After Sealer, Right: Before Sealer)
I also used that copper paint on the light fixtures and outlet plates. You can see them in the photos below.
Pictured below is the floor we intend on putting in. We want a modern feel to the trailer, so going for a white washed wood seemed to be the best option to give us texture while keeping it bright and airy. It’s actually vinyl planking we found at Lowe’s, and it has the tongue and groove edges for easy installment, and it’s lightweight and easy to fix if there’s any damage done to a single plank.
So that’s how far we made it before the damage happened. The last thing we’d done was go out and buy some wood sheets of Walnut for the kitchen counter and dining table.
So here’s what we found after the rain storms:
We saw some ripples near the windows. We were in a bit of denial first. “Oh that was there before, it’s okay. It’s fine.” After we were able to easily peel back the paneling, we realized it was a legitimate concern.
After pulling apart one corner, we realized this damage wasn’t caused by one rain storm. This was years of accumulation. We decided it’s best to gut the entire thing to be sure there’s no other hidden areas that are potentially hazardous. That’s when we found the mold. Thankfully it wasn’t an intense amount, but still scary to think we were about to live in this small space for weeks a time without knowing what was lurking behind the walls. The darker areas of the wood were just crumbling like powder, so if the mold wouldn’t have gotten to us first, the structural integrity of the frame surely would have.
So now we’ve got the entire thing gutted. We’re going to remove any damaged framing, replace it, and repanel it. We designed a new layout together because we figured, hey, if we’re removing everything, why not make a few changes and really make this thing our own?
I am as equally excited as I am dreading this project. It’s 10 times more than we anticipated taking on, but we can do it. Gus is assuring me we can do it. Can’t tell you how many times I gave him a look and said, “..This is a big project. This is a lot.” I’m typically the one to go into panic mode and he helps keeps me calm, collected, and focused.
Stay tuned for more progress posts in the future!