Carmen, an RV Makeover Love Story, Part 1 (of 3)

Please allow me to introduce you to Miss Carmen Amaya, a 1984 vintage GMC Vandura 3500 21″ Recreational Vehicle, made over in the name of that iconic Flamenco-dancing Bad-Ass Carmen Amaya. This lady has taken me on quite a journey over the last 4 months. She’s been pretty well gutted, and then glittered up, dangled and frocked within an inch of her life, and I hope now worthy of her glorious namesake. It took about 100 glue sticks, 2 packages of industrial staples, 3 big cans of spray adhesive, 4 gallons of paint, about 45 yards of fabric, 50 yards of gold gimp trim, countless trips to thrift stores for pillows, bedding, and assorted chotchkis and Home Depot for wood and screws and other industrial what-nots…Not to mention a world of bumps, scraps, bruises and hours and hours of labor. She is worth every bit of it.





That’s my friend Xavier, who was good enough to help me out with some of the early stages of the transformation. Couldn’t have done it without you bud!

Every inch has been transformed…painted, covered in fabric, covered in some way.


Much of what I used I’ve been collecting for years. Bits of vintage fabrics, pillows, architectural pieces, tassels, and more that I’ve found at thrift store and yard sales. I can’t resist a nice bit of fabric. (That’s my sweet pug Max on the bed).rvinsideleftbed

I used leftover wallpaper from my living room on the kitchen drawers, back splash and bar area. I coated it with Modge Podge to make it easier to clean. That lovely Ralph Lauren bedding I found at the Assistance League Thrift Store here in Salt Lake City, along with many of the pillows. I nabbed a few free wine boxes from the wine store to use as under bed storage.  I painted the wood a gloss black and the counters with Giani black granite painting kit (the bath counter too). I replaced the kitchen faucet which was leaking with a simple RV faucet from Amazon. I also found all the ceramic cabinet/drawer pulls on Amazon, 30 for $24! More than enough to do the whole RV.rvinsidebedmax

I recovered the existing window shades with fabric and hot glued on gold bullion fringe. The awesome throws on the daybed I found on Ebay. I made the slide-out sofa into a daybed by adding a cut-to-fit 3/4 inch piece of press board on top of the existing sofa and a 5″ full-size memory foam mattress I already had (Amazon). My pug Max is the main reason I made the sofa into a bed, he would be very upset if he couldn’t sleep with us.rvceiling

The ceiling is covered in anaglypta wallpaper and painted gold. An easy and cheap fix for an ugly damaged ceiling. I found the starburst mirrors at the thrift store, and we already had the oval art piece. Covering the AC unit made a big difference in the look. The draped fabric in the front is 2 layered valances I nabbed on Ebay. The pretty string lights are from Target.


Much of the fabric and most of the pillows are from thrift stores. The sweet tiger rug I found in Amazon. The mixed “wood” vinyl flooring is from Home Depot. It was fairly easy to install.rvinsidelighttable

This sweet chandelier was also an Amazon find. I added leopard print shades I found at the thrift store. The silver 2-drawer unit is from Wayfair, which I wound up getting for free as it arrived slightly damaged. The pink candle is from Target, the rest (including the Mackenzie Childs vase) are thrift store finds.rvinsideceilingrvmaxonbedrvleftloft

The loft turned out so cute, a great spot for a nap. I covered the windows with fake “stained glass” window film from Home Depot. The colorful fabric storage bins are from Amazon.rvrightseatrvloft2rvceiling

I wrapped the existing ceiling lights with beaded fringe and crystals.rvrightrearseat


I love my little bar above the fridge. The Opus One box was free from the wine store, the wine glass hangers are from Amazon (I stained both), and the sparkly gold beaded things are vintage napkin rings from the Assistance League Thrift Store, hot glued in place.rvrightseatfridge

I found the cute little octagonal oil paintings to the left on The larger image is a very old (1800’s) oil painting that was literally falling apart. I cut it in half, mounted it to either side of the refrigerator, coated it in Modge Podge, and hot glued gold gimp trim as a “frame”. It seems to have “repaired” the painting enough to make it work here.rccherub

We already had the cute cherubs, which were hot glued into place.rvchandelierrvrightwindowsea

The paneling on the sides of the fridge was warped so we replaced it with new, thicker paneling from Home Depot, and painted it purple.rvrightwindow

The underside of the cabinets I Modge Podge’d with a collage of antique-looking images from an old music book.

That’s it for today, coming up: the Bathroom, entry, dash and outside.

Thanks for looking! I’m happy to answer any questions you have and welcome your comments.


Fabulous Finds Spring 2017

Hello my beauties…I have neglected you, I admit it, and I apologize. Life has been, well, intense and fascinating! What’s been going on? Well next month will mark my 1-year Tattoo “Graduation” Anniversary! I am happily putting art on people’s skin at Preying Mantis Tattoo in Lakewood, Colorado with a bunch of great guys. (…and still painting of course 🙂 You can see what I’ve been creating at, just click the “Tattoos” link. I have a few openings so message me to book your tattoo! In other news, We spent a week in my favorite city, NYC, a few weeks ago to meet some of my hubby’s long-lost relatives (, we thank you for hooking us up with our fabulous “new” cousins!) It was a great trip, and we’d move there in a heartbeat if we could…This weekend finds us with a multitude of hounds in the house, ten in total,  (we are still dog-sitting, 4 years and counting!) and having lots of furry fun.

But what about the “Fabulous Finds” you ask? Well 2017 has thus far been a treasure trove of amazing from my favorite thrift store and more. Here are a few of the highlights so far this year…bagsshoes

Manolo Blahnik slides, Goodwill, $7.99, Marc Jacobs key holder, $1.99, lace-textured Botkier bag $8.99, and a Furla “Candy Bag” for $30 at Buffalo Exchange.


3 Beautiful Bangles from Goodwill, left to right J Crew, Tory Burch and Kate Spade, $1.99 each.


Burberry translucent blouse, $28 from the Buffalo Exchange outlet.


Vintage Diane Von Furstenberg wrap dress, Goodwill $8.99.


Stuart Weitzman blue suede envelope bag, $6.99 at Goodwill.

What amazing finds have you scored lately? Id love to hear about it in the Comments section…


It’s time for FABULOUS FINDS! It’s been a Great Summer for Designer Thrift Store Finds so far…

I’ve been having a blast trolling for labels at the thrift store this Summer! Last week I scored a gorgeous Tadashi gown ($8.99), 2 silk Nanette Lepore tops ($4.99 each), a Diane Von Furstenberg cocktail dress ($8.99), and 2 pairs of Tori Burch flats ($6.99 each)! How do I pay for all my thrifting fun you ask? Well I sell many of my finds on Ebay to support my habit. I’ve added the links to the pictures below.

tadashifront2Tadashi Shimmering Black Gown ( )


Nanette Lepore Silk Top ( )


Nanette Lepore Silk Top ( )


Diane Von Furstenberg Silk Cocktail Dress ( )


Tori Burch Ballet Flats (sold)


Tori Burch Flats ( )

It’s time for FABULOUS FINDS! Featuring Dolce & Gabbana, Vivienne Westwood and Nanette Lepore!

It’s time for another edition of Fabulous Finds! I’ve unearthed more delightful treasures from my favorite thrift store over the last couple of weeks. First off is this lovely pair of gold metallic heels in very good condition from Dolce and Gabbana! For $8.99! Yee haw, what a steal. Since I already possess a beautiful pair of gold metallic heels (Jimmy Choo! But that’s for another exciting episode 😉 I am selling this pair on ebay to help pay for my other treasures. You can see the listing here:


Next up are these super-fun metallic gunmetal-color rubber heels by Vivienne Westwood. They are so funky, I love them! And surprisingly very comfortable. Only $9.95!


Last but not least is this darling silver rain coat from Nanette Lepore. So cute, and a mere $8.99! This new addition to my wardrobe is getting lots of use with all the rain we’ve been having lately…


I’d love to hear about your great designer thrifting finds! Tell me about them in the “Reply/Leave a Comment” section.

New Fabulous Finds 2015! Roberto Cavalli & Badgley Mishka!

It’s time for a New Edition of Fabulous Finds!

One of last week’s spectacular finds at my favorite Goodwill is this awesome pair of Roberto Cavalli Jeans in perfect condition for only $4.99! Perfect for the floral trend this Spring.


I also scored these gorgeous and glamorous Badgley Mishka sparkly T-strap platform heels, looking like they have maybe been worn once! Grabbed these at auction on for $19 including shipping! Yippee! I love these shoes!


What amazing finds have you scored lately? I’d love to hear about it in the Reply/Leave a Comment section.

New Fabulous Finds! Manolo Blahnik, Celine & Dolce and Gabbana! And a New Source for Cheap Designer Goods…

I have some terrific new finds to tell you about! …and a New Source for Designer Goods…


Here are two recent AWESOME finds at my favorite Goodwill: A pair of wool logo pants from Celine in perfect condition for $4.99, and a Dolce’ & Gabbana silver mesh one-shoulder top ($4.49). I love them both, but am selling the Celine pants on Ebay this week, it’s a great way to help me pay for my thrifting!  ( ) They are great pants just not quite my style. (I’m keeping the top! Can’t wait to wear it this Spring.)

…and as promised, I’m telling you about a New Source. Ok, it’s been around awhile, but it is new to this blog. Goodwill has a national auction website listing all sorts of goods from around the country. The catch is, there is a lot more competition for the good stuff, and you have to pay shipping and handling, but sometimes great things do slip through the cracks. Yes, you are taking a bit of a risk buying off the pictures alone, but if the listing was wrong in any way, you can return the item (minus shipping of course.) A couple weeks ago I scored big on a nice pair of classic black satin kitten heel Manolo Blahniks in excellent condition. The photos were not very good, and I’m guessing that is why not many people were bidding on them. I took a chance and got a great deal, only $14! I did have to add shipping and handling, so the total was $21, still WELL worth it.

Here is the address: Happy shopping! And here are the great heels I snagged…blahnik