How to make a campervan wardrobe

Evolution of my wardrobe project from start to finish...

Initial design
Firstly, plan out how your entire interior is going to look.  You want to minimise the amount of wasted space in your conversion while ensuring it has everything you really need.  Don't be afraid to ignore all the conventional wisdom on how vans should be built, this is your conversion and it needs to meet your needs.  I wanted a double bed while not sacrificing cupboard space or the ability to use the back doors of the van, so my layout is pretty unusual but it suits me perfectly.

The blank canvas
I am the kind of person who finds it really helpful to see things when I'm planning them out, so after cutting scrap bits of wood to roughly the right shape, I used these to decide on the final dimensions for the wardrobe.

Finalising the design with scrap wood

Don't be afraid to change your mind.  The first build was done in 12 mm chipboard because I couldn't find any plywood which was light and thin enough to be suitable.  The chipboard was satisfactory, but it lacked the strength and flexibility of plywood.  So when I eventually sourced some suitable 9 mm plywood, the almost finished wardrobe got ripped out and started again!  

I also redesigned the doors, from 3 sliding doors to 2 hinged doors.  Sliding doors are great but 3 made for a slightly awkward mechanism, so hinged doors seemed preferable even if you do have to be careful not to get stuck on the wrong side of them when you are opening them! The doors have a metal catch on the outside and 1 door is bolted inside the wardrobe to make things secure while the van is moving.

Wardrobe take can't really see the sliding doors but they're there!

Consider how the interior is going to be arranged.  You want a design which allows the wardrobe to be completely filled with your stuff without any risk of mid-journey possession explosions all over the rest of the van!  So I bought some standard wardrobe tidies and altered them slightly to be more suitable for the wardrobe.  This involved shortening the tab top fastening so that no space was wasted and removing the bottom pocket.
My finished wardrobe
And congratulations... you are now the proud owner of your very own van wardrobe!

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