A great way to make RVing more fun is to decorate, and a country theme fits perfectly with the camping lifestyle.
Rustic farmhouse chic is not only calming (no need to worry over a few scratches or scuffs, it only adds to the charm!) but easy to achieve through cosmetic upgrades.
In this guide to creating a country-themed RV, I detail all the best tips to transform your travel trailer, motorhome, or fifth-wheel camper and give it a fresh new look.
From design and style advice to color schemes and overall theming, you’ll have a cozy RV with a country vibe that will put a smile on the face of all who enter, so let’s begin!
What Is Country Interior Design?
Country design exudes a warm, cozy, and casual vibe that creates a relaxing atmosphere.
Achieving this look inside a recreational vehicle isn’t difficult when you follow basic guidelines to keep the country style cohesive throughout the camper.
Country color tones are cream, white, and black, along with either pastel tones or rich reds and blues for accents, depending on what vibe you are trying to achieve.
Some people prefer the modern farmhouse style, while others love a vintage country design. Still, others may want a French or English country look straight from the pages of a magazine.
Overall, the other key materials for country RV decorating will be raw or aged wood, stone, and material such as linen, cotton, and jute.
The final touches of decor like lighting and accessories will have a rustic appeal or be genuine antiques that will tie all the components together into a stunning RV interior.
Steps to Achieve a Country RV Design
When planning your RV country theme, the best start is to break the project into these manageable steps.
Step 1. Formulate the Plan
The first step in making a country RV idea come to life is to draw a floor plan and wall plan for your RV.
Record measurements of all the areas, so you know how much space you have for decor pieces or how much square footage you need to cover with paint, flooring, or other materials.
Next, take pictures of all the spaces inside the camper, and use them to spur ideas on ways to turn your decorating dream into reality. Pictures also will remind you of places you can make small changes to make your RV more functional, such as adding more storage, hooks, or a mirror.
With a sketch of your RV and measurements, you can now narrow down which style of country decorating you like best.
Browse the internet or home magazines for images and pick out the country looks that appeal to you the most.
Note the colors of accessories or cabinets that catch your eye, which can help direct you in choosing the country decor pieces and ideas for your new RV look.
Don’t feel boxed in by a specific country “theme,” as this is your space. Feel free to customize or mix and match different rustic styles to fit your aesthetic.
The final planning stage is to go ahead and list any RV repairs you can tackle during the redecorating process. For example, now is the time to nail down loose trim or replace a leaky kitchen faucet so you can really enjoy your new space.
Step 2. Clear Your RV of Items and Deep Clean
Trying to redecorate and repaint inside a recreational vehicle is difficult enough without having to move belongings around or dealing with dust or greasy kitchen cabinets.
Take the time to clear your RV of as many items as you can. This process will give you a chance to take stock of what you have and things you don’t need.
Once you finish clearing cabinets and storage areas, vacuum and clean everything well. Use a degreasing cleaner or TSP on all the surfaces, especially those you plan to repaint.
If you know you want to repaint your kitchen and other cabinets and woodwork inside your RV and it has a glossy finish, consider using a product like Krud Cutter Gloss-Off that will eliminate the need to sand the surfaces in order for paint to adhere correctly.
Step 3. Build Your Country Color Scheme
Take a look at the current colors in your RV and see what features can remain as-is and which you want to change through paint or new fabrics.
Many newer RVs have wood laminate flooring that fits a country theme perfectly. You’re even in more luck if your cabinets are white, cream, grey, or white-washed wood tone.
Unfortunately, stained oak or dark tone cabinets and furniture are hard to integrate into a country theme and will need some work.
An excellent way to keep your RV decorating looking seamless is to take note of the colors on the exterior and see if you can subtly bring one or two shades indoors to tie the two together.
Great color mixes for country decorating include these shades:
- Greys, white, tan, and black for modern farmhouse country
- Light blue, pale yellow, white, and cream for modern French Country
- Mossy green, golden yellow, grey-white, burgundy, and rust for vintage French Country
- Pastel green, rose, and white for modern country
The above are just suggestions. You may want to paint all your surfaces white to brighten the RV interior and use rustic wood and brighter trim on bedding, curtains, or upholstery to liven things up.
For large surfaces like walls, flooring, or cabinets, it’s best to match color intensities to keep the backdrop of the design cohesive. You can bump up the interest by using pops of more vibrant shades of your color palette for accessory pieces like a vase, picture frames, rugs, or pillows.
Curating your color scheme down to three to five colors is best to keep the RV interior looking fresh and uncluttered.
You want accent colors to be a few shades deeper than the softer tones, so the transition stands out but isn’t jarring to the eye.
The only exception to this decorating rule is the traditional country design that uses weathered reds and blacks against a white backdrop.
Don’t be afraid to change up a color or two in the bathroom or bedroom to keep things interesting. For example, if you paint the kitchen cabinets a light blue, consider painting the bathroom cabinets a pale yellow or a grey-green.
Step 4. Repaint Walls and Cabinets
If your RV walls or cabinets are not a color suitable for the country look, it’s time to repaint.
Don’t skip using a good primer to help cover a patterned wall covering or to help paint adhere to wood surfaces.
If you plan to go all out and sand down or otherwise rough up the edges of furniture to achieve that worn, rustic look, a great tip is to tint the primer a light grey or warm tan. Then, once you remove some of the surface paint, the primer color will show and add an extra layer of authenticity to the finished piece.
Another way to add “age” to your finished paint job is to rub over the cabinets with a wax antiquing paste, that will catch into grooves and tone down the starkness of a fresh coat of paint. You can find easy-to-apply waxes in various shades to give your painted surfaces a custom finish.
Step 5. Tackle Flooring and Accent Walls
A light white-washed grey or tan wood plank laminate flooring is ideal for replacing dated RV carpet or sheet linoleum.
In many instances, you can cover existing linoleum flooring instead of going through the hassle of ripping it up. However, if your RV has slideouts, make sure the unit will move in and out over the height of the new flooring before you install it permanently.
Accent walls are a fantastic way to bring natural elements into your country decorating.
Adding weathered wood planks horizontally over a living area or bedroom wall adds a warm charm.
Step 7. Install Country Style Light Fixtures
Switching out your RV light fixtures with ones that have a country feel will bring your entire look together.
Before you remove and replace lighting, take a moment to see if you can use paint or a new cover to make the existing lights work for your theme.
Spray painting the housing of gold, silver, or brass-toned light fixtures black or white, may be all you need to transform its appearance.
For a truly rustic feel, try a galvanized steel look you can create using the faux finish technique in this video (bellow) by The Bonnie Life. The best thing about this DIY paint project is that it lets you keep the fixtures you have, and you can paint over plastic fixture components and metal with the same great results.
Steel – Farmhouse Decor (Video)
Step 6. Choose Your Country Style Furniture
Choosing vintage natural or painted wood pieces for RV furniture you want to add or replace will make the space feel more authentic.
Country furniture has a chunkier profile, with simple lines, shallow carving, or lathe-turned legs. Upholstery tends to be deep and cushy instead of tight and slim.
Scour flea markets, thrift and antique stores, or your parent’s attic for things like end tables, mirrors, picture frames or artwork, a coffee table, or a free-standing table and chair set if you choose to remove your booth dinette.
Mismatched furniture is quirky and on point with the country theme, but you may need to refinish items if the colors don’t fit your plan.
You can find plenty of modern furniture with a vintage country vibe if you prefer to purchase new.
Do remember to select multi-purpose furniture whenever you can to keep your RV as functional as possible. For example, end tables with doors or drawers provide more storage for camping supplies, an ottoman with a lid can store throw blankets, and work as a coffee table and extra seating.
Another example is a slim mirrored cabinet that can hold keys or jewelry and let you check your appearance before leaving the RV for the day.
In the RV bedroom, think about replacing the headboard with old wooden shutters you seal with a clear varnish or recover the bland fabric with a patterned design that fits with your theme, whether that’s a floral, a gingham check, or even a lace print that evokes a classy vintage country feel.
Consider swapping out that laminate dinette table top for a wood version you can “age” by dinging it up with a hammer before staining or painting it to match your design plan.
Changing the fronts of cabinet doors to a more suitable country style is another way to make an impact without spending a fortune.
Nailing on thin wood slats vertically over inset-paneled doors will make them appear more retro, especially after painting and aging them a bit. Think about going the extra mile and adding smaller trim in a “Z” or “X” shape to make the doors look like mini barn doors.
Step 7. Choose the Best Country RV Window Treatments
Linen or loose-weave cotton curtains in cream or white are the perfect elements to complete a country RV redecorating project. The material is heavier and natural-looking versus a nylon sheer, yet it allows plenty of light and keeps an airy feeling.
Removing bulky RV valances and installing a decorative rod with curtains hanging from clip-on rings will make the interior feel more residential.
Finding vintage curtains with hand embroidery or lace details will amplify a French country RV, while a fun check trim detail will tie in with a farmhouse country design.
Privacy at campgrounds is always a concern, so don’t remove shades unless you plan to replace them with a more appropriate color or style to go with your new country RV redesign.
Step 8. Add Your Country RV Decor and Accessories
The last step in making your country RV transformation come to life is to add all the little touches that showcase your personality and highlight the country theme.
For couches, overstuffed pillows covered in linen, gingham, or quilt-square fabric become the focal point.
For the bedroom, go with a patchwork quilt design for a downhome Americana country vibe, or a pattern that has a more traditional English country feel. You can also keep the comforter a solid color, but keep the quilted stitching to keep with the country style.
Rag or jute rugs in a spiral design are a country staple that will warm your feet in a bathroom, kitchen, or under the dining table. In addition, you can find this style of rug in just about any color combination to match your color scheme.
Country artwork can be a peaceful landscape, reclaimed wood signs, metalwork such as a large star, or even a collection of horseshoes or a pair of spurs.
The more creative you can be with displaying interesting decor pieces, the fewer items you’ll need to make an impact. This premise is very helpful when trying to decorate the small interiors of a recreational vehicle.
Don’t rush to fill every space with accessories. Instead, take time during your RV travels to find unique pieces that bring you joy and slowly build your collection while creating special memories of each trip.
Filling rustic wood shadow boxes with found trinkets and hanging a few together in a bedroom, bathroom, or living area will remind you of your travels and doubles as a conversation piece.
The best country RV interiors are a haven from everyday life and the hum-drum interiors found in most recreational vehicles.
A country interior design isn’t one-size-fits-all. There are many interesting ways to interpret this style and make it your own while having fun in the process.
I hope the tips in this country RV decorating guide are helpful, and you follow the steps to give your RV a new look that makes you happy and that others will envy!
Join 712+ Passionate RVers
Smart Camper Decorating Ideas (Video)
"Man cannot discover new oceans unless he has the courage to lose sight of the shore."
-- Andre Gide