I absolutely love camping. Even more than sewing. And I really love sewing.
I’d like to be camping this weekend, but alas the weather has been, err, complicated. As in, you know, bad!
But we had one day of beautiful sunshine today, so I brought the camper out to check all was well ahead of a trip we have planned for a few weeks’ time.
Now, let’s quickly define camping, shall we? I’ve done all kinds of camping in my life. Multi-day bushwalks with the bare basics. Multi-day kayaking also with the bare basics. But camping, in this context, is what I call ‘fluffy pillow camping’. Some people call it glamping. It’s still camping (it IS, I tell you!), but in comfort. And a bit of style.
My Gidget Teardrop Camper
So, with that in mind, meet my camper! She’s a Gidget Retro Teardrop Camper, and her name is Billie (Billie T? or Billie Holiday? take your pick). She is the Bondi model.
I fell in love with these campers when I first saw them online almost 5 years ago. It took me quite a while to talk hubby into the idea of buying one, and then we waited patiently (ok, he waited patiently, I waited impatiently) for Billie to roll off the assembly line earlier this year.
These campers are made by a start-up Australian company, which started out as a husband and wife team (Glenn and Chris). Glenn is the caravan builder, Chris is the design inspiration and graphic designer. They are the perfect design/build team and they have designed a beautiful and very well set up little camper.
Scrapper’s Delight quilt (design by Amanda Jean Nyberg)
So what does this have to do with sewing? Well, fluffy pillow camping requires a few trimmings. So while I waited for my new camper to be built, I started with a quilt.
It’s nice in there isn’t it? Just a bed and some cupboards. But it’s a nice bed, and they’re nice cupboards. The photo above shows the radio facing the inside. But you can turn that console around and have a TV on the inside, which is how we have it most nights. Like this…
My hubby originally said ‘No way! No TV while we’re camping or it’s not really camping.’ But he has enjoyed our late night movies and Star Trek watching and I leave the selection up to him. From time to time, it’s a nice way to end the day.
Anyway, back to the sewing. I made a scraps quilt from fabrics I already had. It’s a free-wheeling design by Amanda Jean Nyberg, which I got from a book she wrote with Cheryl Arkison called ‘Sunday Morning Quilts‘. I love this book and happily recommend it to anyone who likes simple, modern quilts in less formal styles. There are loads of ideas in there to use up fabric scraps. This particular quilt design is call “Scrapper’s Delight”.
The only fabric I bought for this was the yellow for the border and binding, and a simple grey and white print for the back. So I can’t tell you what all these fabrics are, but keen quilters may recognise a few. Most of them came from Hettie’s Patch – Adelaide’s best shop for quilting fabrics in my humble opinion. (But my quilting itch has been scratched for the time being.)
I even used scraps for the insides – which is made from a combination of an ugly old purple wool blanket (you’ll see some of it soon – read on!), and leftover bamboo quilt batting. So this is a very warm, bargain quilt!
A matching applique pillow
It was a loooong wait for this camper. So I also made a pillow. As you can see, I made it to look just like my new teardrop camper, even though at one point I wondered if it would ever actually arrive. But it did, and the pillow slots in perfectly. I am a very happy camper.
Bags and bunting
It didn’t end there. There were all sorts of bits and pieces that needed to be wrapped up in little bags to stop them from rattling around while in transit. So – scraps again! There’s not a lot of space in a camper like this, so everything has its place and we try to keep it all pretty organised.
The stove top has a few pieces that come off during transit. We originally kept these in the drawers, until the idea dawned that they would travel really well inside the sink if they had stuff bags. So more bags, and more bags…
And honestly, what camper would be complete without bunting?
Now that I think about it, this is another great way to use up leftover fabric isn’t it? Which I’ve posted about previously here.
Does anyone else sew stuff to go camping with? I bet I’m not the only one. It’s such a great example of sewing being very, very useful and practical.
You don’t really need the camper (please don’t tell hubby I said this though). Camping can be really luxurious and comfortable in a nice big tent. Just so long as you have some fluffy pillows!