The metamorphosis happened at a friend’s sculpture studio, and it was almost like an archeological dig. While they were cleaning up the travel trailer they found all sorts of artifacts and objects belonging to people that lived inside since some stranger first purchased it in 1959 – mix tapes, scrawled recipes, and wrinkled photographs, and other objects from the past. The Airstream is now kept in the back garden of a co-op in North Berkeley. The bushy foliage and the chickens create a peaceful, fresh-from-the-field atmosphere.
The renovation took a lot of care and creativity from his owner. While he was doing the restoration work he was thinking already about his next step. With just 150 square feet to work with, the architect covered the whole floor with sustainable cork, added track lighting to the ceiling, and painted it non-toxic lime green, leaving the riveted aluminum end caps to expose the craftsmanship’s work.
He then added custom-designed cabinets and furniture to fit the organically shaped interiors and removed the sewage facilities completely to free up extra space. The original stove was kept, and an inexpensive recycled aluminum sheet texturized with a ball-pen hammer was stuck to the wall. Medium-sized windows allow natural light to enter the trailer while an off-the-shelf track lighting system playfully crawls along the ceiling providing extra light. The bed is 7 feet long and it hides a useful wide drawer underneath. Stripped paint reveals the beautiful riveting at the ends of the Airstream. Stavropoulos also renovated the outside of the trailer, polishing the aluminum skin, restoring the retro lights, and retouching the original California license plate.