The Custom Furniture Business: Creating Beautiful and Timeless Designs
Small businesses are the soul of America

More people are interested in buying locally made products than ever before. You can capitalize on many consumers’ return to local shopping by emphasizing that all components of your furniture are made in the United States, or in your town or area. The same applies to handmade goods. Individuals who are tired of mass-produced goods are often the same people who are interested in buying locally. Given this climate, it is a good time to start a handmade furniture business.

5 small but mighty camper vans you can buy now

The <a class="ql-link" href="https://www.curbed.com/2018/7/12/17562458/camper-van-for-sale-pop-top-recon-campers" target="_blank">Envy</a> from Recon Campers includes a pop top sleeping area and a bench seat that transforms into a lower bed to sleep four people.&nbsp;Read more, <a class="ql-link" href="https://www.curbed.com/2018/7/12/17562458/camper-van-for-sale-pop-top-recon-campers" target="_blank">here</a>.

The coolest vans on the block

For years, the North American RV market was missing what so many adventurers seemed to want: A compact camper that fits in your garage, can function as a daily driver, and still sleep two to four people for short weekend camping trips. It’s what has made the Volkswagen California van—unfortunately not sold in the U.S.—so popular around the world. Love campers and trailers? Come join our community group.

The good news? Things are changing. A new crop of camper companies has recognized the gap in the market, resulting in a range of innovative camper vans. Some are built on smaller versions of best-selling larger vans (like the Ram Promaster City or the Mercedes Metris) while other companies are converting low-roof Nissan NV200 cargo vans. And one company is even building out a minivan—the Toyota Sienna—into a weekend getaway.

In the past, we’ve written guides to other popular campers—like the best teardrops, lightweight trailers, Class B camper vans, DIY camper van kits, and vintage trailers. Now we turn to the newly competitive small camper van market, with five picks that are sure to impress.

The Free Bird from Caravan Outfitter

 Photos...

The <a class="ql-link" href="https://www.curbed.com/2018/7/12/17562458/camper-van-for-sale-pop-top-recon-campers" target="_blank">Envy</a> from Recon Campers includes a pop top sleeping area and a bench seat that transforms into a lower bed to sleep four people.&nbsp;Read more, <a class="ql-link" href="https://www.curbed.com/2018/7/12/17562458/camper-van-for-sale-pop-top-recon-campers" target="_blank">here</a>.

The coolest vans on the block

For years, the North American RV market was missing what so many adventurers seemed to want: A compact camper that fits in your garage, can function as a daily driver, and still sleep two to four people for short weekend camping trips. It’s what has made the Volkswagen California van—unfortunately not sold in the U.S.—so popular around the world. Love campers and trailers? Come join our community group.

The good news? Things are changing. A new crop of camper companies has recognized the gap in the market, resulting in a range of innovative camper vans. Some are built on smaller versions of best-selling larger vans (like the Ram Promaster City or the Mercedes Metris) while other companies are converting low-roof Nissan NV200 cargo vans. And one company is even building out a minivan—the Toyota Sienna—into a weekend getaway.

In the past, we’ve written guides to other popular campers—like the best teardrops, lightweight trailers, Class B camper vans, DIY camper van kits, and vintage trailers. Now we turn to the newly competitive small camper van market, with five picks that are sure to impress.

The Free Bird from Caravan Outfitter

 Photos courtesy of Caravan Outfitter

Cost: The 2019 Free Bird SV+ starts at $37,165

Details: Built on the Nissan NV200 cargo van, the Free Bird from Caravan Outfitter uses a convenient slide-rail system that makes switching from camper van to cargo hauler a cinch. The slide-and-glide system allows all of the components to be installed or removed in about two minutes. The main cabin is a series of boxes that hold everything you need to camp.

The kitchen is accessed from the rear in a slide-out kitchen box; it consists of a portable butane stove and two storage drawers. A seating area and table makes a comfortable indoor dining or workspace, and then at night the table legs remove and the table slides in to form a mattress platform. The cushions combine to form a 76-inch full-size bed, with space for two adults. Read more, this way.

Oasis Campervans

 Photos by RamenViews, courtesy of Oasis Campervans

Cost: Van conversions start at $4,000

Details: Unlike other small camper van companies that use Nissan or Mercedes vans, Colorado-based Oasis Campervans converts the all-wheel-drive Toyota Sienna minivan into mobile homes-on-the-go. Oasis Campervan conversions include a main living room with pull-out drawers, a finished floor, and a moveable table for working. One of the most innovative parts of the design is a foldable chair that transforms into part of the bed with a helpful back rest, and when in the sleeping position the full-size mattress can hold one or two people comfortably.

Similar to a teardrop trailer, the van’s rear area accesses a small kitchen with a sink, running water, drawers and shelves, and a large countertop. Dinner prep is made easy thanks to a fold-up kitchen table, and in certain van layouts, the kitchen can also fit a slide-out drawer that fits a cooler or refrigerator. Head over here for more.

The Envy from Recon Camper

minivan with pop-top sleeping areaCourtesy of Recon Campers
 Courtesy of Recon Campers

Cost: Starting from $28,500

Details: Recon Campers uses the Nissan NV200 commercial grade van to create campers that give you #VanLife at a fraction of the cost of many larger builds. Their Envy camper features seven feet of standing room thanks to a pop top that contains an 88 inch by 40 inch upper bed.

Down below, the Envy boasts a custom rear bench seat—made with breathable multi-density foam—that folds flat into a 42 inch by 72 inch lower bed, perfect for a couple. A galley kitchen isn’t large but houses most of the basics, like a stainless steel fridge, sink, and pantry area with a bit of room for storage.

Recon Campers temporarily stopped taking orders in 2018 to expand production, but they should open up sales again in spring 2019. Read more about the Envy, this way.

Peace Vans Modern

 Courtesy of Peace Vans

Cost: Popping the top starts at $10,995 while the Full Camper model starts at $36,995 for the conversion only

Details: Seattle-based Peace Vans is no stranger to the joys of pop-top campers. As the largest Volkswagen camper shop in the country, Peace Vans both services Vanagons and Eurovans and helps owners customize and restore their iconic vans. The Peace Vans Modern is a new take on what the classic VW buses have long offered: A versatile camping experience in a compact package. Peace Vans uses the 2019 Mercedes Metris van and offers three different builds.

Their full camper model uses a Metris cargo van and Peace Vans pops the top, installs a special seat the folds flat into a bed, then adds storage cabinets and a kitchen with a two-burner stove, sink, and refrigerator. Read more, over here.

Cascade Campers

 Courtesy of Cascade Campers

Cost: The Cascade Camper conversion fits on Ram Promaster City Cargo vans newer than 2015 and retails for $7,000

Details: California-based Cascade Campers uses a Ram Promaster City (that’s smaller than the longer Ram Promasters) to install basic, no-frills kits that give you just what you might need for life on the road and nothing more. Unlike other camper kits that you can install yourself, Cascade Campers does all the work. You just need to get them a Promaster City and wait about two weeks for installation.

The company has added insulation, wall, and ceiling paneling to help with heat, and a long, futon-style sofa on the driver’s side is the only rear seating option. That same sofa allows for plenty of seating when at camp, and at night it transforms into a 42-inch by 76-inch double bed. For cooking, a small kitchen runs along the passenger side of the van and includes a sink and a Dometic fridge. The sink runs off of a 19-liter jerry can with quick-release water lines, and a single-burner butane stove is a simple solution to cooking. Head over here for more.

The <a class="ql-link" href="https://www.curbed.com/2018/7/12/17562458/camper-van-for-sale-pop-top-recon-campers" target="_blank">Envy</a> from Recon Campers includes a pop top sleeping area and a bench seat that transforms into a lower bed to sleep four people.&nbsp;Read more, <a class="ql-link" href="https://www.curbed.com/2018/7/12/17562458/camper-van-for-sale-pop-top-recon-campers" target="_blank">here</a>.

The coolest vans on the block

For years, the North American RV market was missing what so many adventurers seemed to want: A compact camper that fits in your garage, can function as a daily driver, and still sleep two to four people for short weekend camping trips. It’s what has made the Volkswagen California van—unfortunately not sold in the U.S.—so popular around the world. Love campers and trailers? Come join our community group.

The good news? Things are changing. A new crop of camper companies has recognized the gap in the market, resulting in a range of innovative camper vans. Some are built on smaller versions of best-selling larger vans (like the Ram Promaster City or the Mercedes Metris) while other companies are converting low-roof Nissan NV200 cargo vans. And one company is even building out a minivan—the Toyota Sienna—into a weekend getaway.

In the past, we’ve written guides to other popular campers—like the best teardrops, lightweight trailers, Class B camper vans, DIY camper van kits, and vintage trailers. Now we turn to the newly competitive small camper van market, with five picks that are sure to impress.

The Free Bird from Caravan Outfitter

 Photos courtesy of Caravan Outfitter

Cost: The 2019 Free Bird SV+ starts at $37,165

Details: Built on the Nissan NV200 cargo van, the Free Bird from Caravan Outfitter uses a convenient slide-rail system that makes switching from camper van to cargo hauler a cinch. The slide-and-glide system allows all of the components to be installed or removed in about two minutes. The main cabin is a series of boxes that hold everything you need to camp.

The kitchen is accessed from the rear in a slide-out kitchen box; it consists of a portable butane stove and two storage drawers. A seating area and table makes a comfortable indoor dining or workspace, and then at night the table legs remove and the table slides in to form a mattress platform. The cushions combine to form a 76-inch full-size bed, with space for two adults. Read more, this way.

Oasis Campervans

 Photos by RamenViews, courtesy of Oasis Campervans

Cost: Van conversions start at $4,000

Details: Unlike other small camper van companies that use Nissan or Mercedes vans, Colorado-based Oasis Campervans converts the all-wheel-drive Toyota Sienna minivan into mobile homes-on-the-go. Oasis Campervan conversions include a main living room with pull-out drawers, a finished floor, and a moveable table for working. One of the most innovative parts of the design is a foldable chair that transforms into part of the bed with a helpful back rest, and when in the sleeping position the full-size mattress can hold one or two people comfortably.

Similar to a teardrop trailer, the van’s rear area accesses a small kitchen with a sink, running water, drawers and shelves, and a large countertop. Dinner prep is made easy thanks to a fold-up kitchen table, and in certain van layouts, the kitchen can also fit a slide-out drawer that fits a cooler or refrigerator. Head over here for more.

The Envy from Recon Camper

minivan with pop-top sleeping areaCourtesy of Recon Campers
 Courtesy of Recon Campers

Cost: Starting from $28,500

Details: Recon Campers uses the Nissan NV200 commercial grade van to create campers that give you #VanLife at a fraction of the cost of many larger builds. Their Envy camper features seven feet of standing room thanks to a pop top that contains an 88 inch by 40 inch upper bed.

Down below, the Envy boasts a custom rear bench seat—made with breathable multi-density foam—that folds flat into a 42 inch by 72 inch lower bed, perfect for a couple. A galley kitchen isn’t large but houses most of the basics, like a stainless steel fridge, sink, and pantry area with a bit of room for storage.

Recon Campers temporarily stopped taking orders in 2018 to expand production, but they should open up sales again in spring 2019. Read more about the Envy, this way.

Peace Vans Modern

 Courtesy of Peace Vans

Cost: Popping the top starts at $10,995 while the Full Camper model starts at $36,995 for the conversion only

Details: Seattle-based Peace Vans is no stranger to the joys of pop-top campers. As the largest Volkswagen camper shop in the country, Peace Vans both services Vanagons and Eurovans and helps owners customize and restore their iconic vans. The Peace Vans Modern is a new take on what the classic VW buses have long offered: A versatile camping experience in a compact package. Peace Vans uses the 2019 Mercedes Metris van and offers three different builds.

Their full camper model uses a Metris cargo van and Peace Vans pops the top, installs a special seat the folds flat into a bed, then adds storage cabinets and a kitchen with a two-burner stove, sink, and refrigerator. Read more, over here.

Cascade Campers

 Courtesy of Cascade Campers

Cost: The Cascade Camper conversion fits on Ram Promaster City Cargo vans newer than 2015 and retails for $7,000

Details: California-based Cascade Campers uses a Ram Promaster City (that’s smaller than the longer Ram Promasters) to install basic, no-frills kits that give you just what you might need for life on the road and nothing more. Unlike other camper kits that you can install yourself, Cascade Campers does all the work. You just need to get them a Promaster City and wait about two weeks for installation.

The company has added insulation, wall, and ceiling paneling to help with heat, and a long, futon-style sofa on the driver’s side is the only rear seating option. That same sofa allows for plenty of seating when at camp, and at night it transforms into a 42-inch by 76-inch double bed. For cooking, a small kitchen runs along the passenger side of the van and includes a sink and a Dometic fridge. The sink runs off of a 19-liter jerry can with quick-release water lines, and a single-burner butane stove is a simple solution to cooking. Head over here for more.


Read full article on Blog


Give your business a name. Name your business something that indicates what you sell. This will come in handy later on, when you are marketing your business and want people to associate your business name with handmade furniture.
File a DBA, which stands for “doing business as,” at your local county clerk’s office. You may want to do a search to ensure that no other business in your town is operating under the same name. If you live in a large metropolitan area, a search is a necessity.
Create a line of furniture. You’ll need to have models of each piece of furniture that you intend to sell, so that customers can easily visualize what you have to offer. Add to your furniture line each year so that your stock stays fresh and on-trend.