Organising things has to be one of my favourite hobbies, from our house to holidays and now of course our caravan. I actually find organising the van so much easier than our house. I am sure that it is because the smaller space really lets you minimise all the junk that is usually floating around. Don’t get me wrong we still end up with some junk, we are human and actually live in our van whilst away, but it isn’t on display, so my organising is for life not show.
Take Advantage of Space
So day to day items that you really need are the things that tend to take up room, having gone from a teeny tiny vintage van to a bigger van has us really spoilt for space but you can absolutely utilise these tips for your smaller spaces too. We have a little cupboard under the fridge, it is not huge but that is where the pots and pans live, plus our wooden chopping board. They all nestle into each other nicely. I use the tasty pots set, they work on our induction cook top and they are light so not too much weight is taken up by them.
Under the bed, we store the air fryer, TV, spare doonas, winter jackets, and our extra trestle table that is our outdoor prep station. The kitchen cupboards I found were the trickiest to organise. The little plastic containers from Big W work great for keeping condiments in one spot and to stop them from rolling around and smashing in your cupboards.
Utilise Handy, Compact Storage Containers
Rubbish bins can be a right pain in the neck when trying to find a place for them, we got a great little one from Campsmart – it’s just a small one that sits on the inside of the cupboard door under our sink, but it is so easy. Campsmart have some really handy items that we have used in our van, their little cutlery drainer has been a sanity saver too.
Fusion Loc shower caddies are another favourite, I have them in the shower and the kitchen for our tea and coffee – and yes it stays on the wall with the containers while we drive and has not fallen off. I also have one for sunscreen and bug sprays so they are easy to get to for everyone.
Having 5 people in the van, towels can be one of those things that are tricky to find space for after they’ve been used. I have Fusion Loc hooks in the bathroom so everyone has a place to hang their towel – getting the kids to actually hang them up is the next challenge! I use IKEA wardrobe storage for clothing; everything fits and anything that doesn’t, well… it doesn’t come. I have been pretty ruthless with clothing in the van, we don’t have that much, but we do have a washing machine so that allows us to wash more often.
Keeping the kids organised is a fun one, our van has pockets in the bunks which are great and we have added bed organisers from IKEA on the ladder for their extra bits and pieces.
Plan And Organise Before You Leave
If you are just about to embark on a big trip or your lap, definitely make a list of all the things you use daily, how many clothes you and your family go through in a week and then see what you can cull from that list before you begin packing. Also, don’t be afraid to reassess once you are on the road, I think I have changed our set up a few times to make sure it works for all of us. We also have a little plastic step stool in our van so that the kids can reach things.
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Keep Outdoor Equipment Outside
The outside of the van is a whole other world of organising, one that I do let Simon (my hubby) have a little control over. Our main rule is that things that are ‘dirty’ get kept outside, so the BBQ obviously, but our outside furniture, surf boards, wetsuits, snorkel gear, etc. sta inside. We have hooks that slide into the awning that are great for towels, wetsuits and snorkel gear and in the cooler months I put hooks on the van where we can hang our jackets so that we don’t have wet jackets dripping in the van. We have a grip sport bike rack on the draw bar and it is worth the money one hundred times over. It lifts up so that we can access underneath and stores the bikes beautifully.
Lapping our gorgeous country is becoming such a popular choice for people, especially after 2020. It is such an amazing experience even if you are not full-time travellers. Having your space organised to be more user-friendly absolutely ensures that you can just pull up at your location of choice and relax or explore the surroundings.
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