1. The original RV furniture with our 5th wheel really was not our style, plus it was not comfortable. We purchased two Ekorne Stressless recliners (http://www.ekornes.com/) with the fold-away laptop table and gave away the big original recliner and sleeper sofa. The picture to the right is from the website; our chairs are actually black leather. The chairs are a little pricey, but the quality and comfort of the chair and the function of the laptop desk sold us.
2. Upper cabinets in your RV can become a miserable mess without any thought to organization. We found a great website http://www.organization.com/ selling boxes fitting perfectly in our cabinet. We are able to fit about 12 labeled burgundy boxes trimmed in black (happens to be our color scheme—RV redecoration—will explain in another blog). Fantastic! For example, one box holds our cameras/camera accessories, another box contains office supplies, another software, and you get the idea. Can you imagine the jumble without the boxes?
3. Why use the original RV end tables with no storage when you can have so much more? When you need a table but have little space, our No-Room-for-a-Table Table made by http://www.levenger.com/ fits perfectly next to my recliner. Hidden hinges allow the top to lift from either side to reveal an oblong storage compartment, and there's a shelf below. Two of the leather baskets fit snugly within the table's storage compartment and the shelf basket holds our frequently used files (bills, RV park reservations/information, medical records, miscellaneous, and magazines).
4. Storing heavy pots and pans can be a real challenge in a RV. You do not want to put them in a deep drawer since the jostling occurring as your travel will break the bottom. Under the sink and the upper cabinets are usually too small and awkward. Our solution was to install a roomy, deep sliding basket in our kitchen “garage”. Rails attach to the insides of the cabinet so you can simply slide the basket in and out with one hand, bringing anything you need right to your fingertips. Basket is made of heavy duty steel with chrome finish. We bought ours at http://www.bedbathandbeyond.com/, but I see them at Home Depot and Lowes, too.
5. Since we pitched the sleeper sofa, we had plenty of room for a larger “end table” with some extra storage. Pottery Barn had a great solution for a table, storage (we use it for Mike’s shoes), and it is sturdy enough to use as extra seating. http://www.potterybarn.com/ The black “box” in the picture is our solution for extra storage and a table.
6. Our Britta water pitcher is our answer to reliable clean drinking water on the road. You really do not know what condition an RV Park water system is in; so why chance it? We love our Britta and use it constantly.
7. A portable ice maker can be considered a luxury, but I want ice in my drink and lots of it. I hate dealing with the little plastic ice cube trays—I am short and every time I tried to put the trays in the freezer I spilled water all over me. Ughh!! I really
8. Washer and Dryer—cannot live without it. See blog posted on July 19, 2010.
9. After traveling down the road with your RV, I can guarantee you that the contents of the medicine cabinet will come tumbling out when you open the door. Simple solution—we purchased little bamboo trays (again from Bed, Bath and Beyond) fitting perfectly on the shelves. Works like a charm.
10. Simple Human makes great products and we are sold on their garbage can. Yep, you read correctly. The garbage can made it on the list. Instead of using valuable cabinet space (which I now use for MY shoes) our garbage can is located conveniently at the end of the counter. The lid seals up nice and tight; the stainless steel blends perfectly with our stainless steel appliances. http://www.simplehuman.com/
So, there you have it. From the expensive to the cheap. They are our solutions to-date and we are always trying to improve. Let me know if you have more ideas!