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6 Tips For Building Out The Perfect Boho Camper Van

A turquoise van decked out in boho style decorations and accessories.
This boho camper van from @leah_in_transit combines all of our favorite boho elements together.

6 Tips For Building Out The Perfect Boho Camper Van

If you’re following all the most famous Instagram van lifers out there, you’ve probably noticed one popular decoration style that seems to show up time and time again: boho!

Boho camper vans are out there in numbers, and it makes perfect sense why. The down-to-earth, relaxed, eclectic vibe it portrays goes hand in hand with the van lifestyle.

And it doesn’t stop at just vans. Boho style is everywhere! Furniture, clothing, bedding, decorations, and accessories are all found in bohemian designs. So, where does the style originate, and what has made it remerge over and over again as the years go by? Let’s look at the history of boho style and how you can incorporate it into your camper van build!

What is “Boho”?

Many people know that boho is short for “bohemian”, but that doesn’t really help us understand the history behind the word. Despite the fact that they were actually from India, “bohemian” referred to the Romani people. The Roma were a nomadic ethnic group that spread across the world and a majority ended up in Europe. Without going too deep into the history of the Romani people, it’s essential to understand that they faced centuries of persecution to avoid cultural appropriation.

The Spruce offers a great history of the word, explaining how it became known to encompass unconventional lifestyles such as artists and musicians. Eventually, it began to overlap with hippie culture and then finally became considered a largely fashionable trend across the globe.

Throughout the years, boho has become more of a descriptive word for styles that include mismatched patterns, textures, and colors. In regards to home (or van) boho decor, the aesthetic tends to incorporate global influence, plants, layers, and lots of pillows.

How To Build Out A Boho Camper Van

The fun thing about boho style is you really can’t go wrong. You can customize it with all sorts of colors, patterns, and accessories that you’re drawn to.

One of the key elements is the variety and eclectic collection of items thrown together. This makes it a great trend for van lifers, as you can continue adding to it as you travel the country (or world)!

1. Start with lots of wood and other natural elements

When you first start building your van, include as much wood as possible if you’re looking for a boho aesthetic. Unfinished or natural-looking wood will get you the closest look to what you’re going for.

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Many boho van builds will have wood across the ceiling or down the walls. You can take it a step further and deck out your entire van with wood.

If your van is already built and it’s too late for wooden walls or a wood-paneled ceiling, you can still incorporate natural elements on the walls to achieve that boho chic camper look. For example, add rattan or wicker accents to your walls for a very similar vibe.

2. Bring bold patterns or prints into the space

The sky is the limit on how you decide to bring in patterns, prints, and any other designs you can think of. You don’t really need to worry about whether two patterns are matchy-matchy. In fact, boho style tends to mix patterns that don’t normally go together.

One of the easiest ways to bring patterns into your space is with your bedding. Use a vintage-style blanket and add a mix of fringed pillows to accent it. Other options include boho curtains, textured rugs, patterned wallpaper, or global accessories, all of which can bring a ton of variety of eye-catching pieces into your boho camper van interior.

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3. Don’t skimp on the pillows

The boho aesthetic never has a shortage of pillows. These aren’t limited to your bed, either. You can have floor pillows, accent pillows, throw pillows, even outdoor pillows if you’d like!

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The same elements as above can be mirrored in your pillows as well. Think bright colors, bold patterns, and even natural elements like macrame. A common choice in boho-style pillows are ones made with Moroccan or Indian-style fabrics.

4. Bring the outdoors inside with lots of plants

Okay, we know. Plants and vans don’t exactly sound like a match made in heaven. But you can achieve the same aesthetic with fake plants if you’re worried about trying to keep real ones alive. Plus, you don’t need an entire jungle to get the natural plant vibe that we’re going for.

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You can keep small plants that require minimal care, like succulents, in the window sills or on the kitchen counter. A good tip to keep them from flying around while you’re driving is to secure Velcro on the bottom of the pots. You can also incorporate hanging plants, but just remember to secure them before you change locations.

5. Romantic lighting will set the boho mood

When we think of boho decor, we think of candles scattered throughout the entire space. Candles, like plants, aren’t necessarily the best addition to a camper van. However, you can achieve a similar look with fairy or twinkle lights or even battery-operated candles.

String lights along your ceiling or lay them along your kitchen counter to create mood lighting during the night. You can also hang bistro lights around the back doors of your van so that they can be used indoors and outdoors.

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6. Accessorize, accessorize, accessorize!

Some people may say that boho decor can look a bit busy, but that’s part of the eclectic style. There is no such thing as too much!

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One way to take your boho camper van to the next level is to keep adding boho-style accessories as you go. Souvenirs and trinkets from other countries, pieces of art, books, coffee mugs, and tons of other small accessories can really add to the overall boho vibe of your camper van.

Get more tips from Vanlifers

For more tips and valuable information from experienced Vanlifers, check out the articles on Vanlifers.com and join the #Vanlife community by following Vanlifers on Instagram.

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