Allison and Nick from Denver, Colorado, had known they wanted to live the tiny house lifestyle while they were both still in college. They both shared a love for travel and decided to be free of their nine-to-five jobs and on the road by 2020. After finishing college and having very little money to their names, they began attending tiny house festivals to make sure it was truly what they wanted to do. This only further fueled their fire, and they moved to Colorado and saved for six years to purchase an HOA-free property with the goal of building their dream tiny house.
After watching a documentary called Expedition Happiness, they threw caution to the wind and put a $5,000 bid on a 40-foot 2006 International school bus that same night. They won and haven’t looked back.
The couple spent the next two and a half years renovating the bus to suit their everyday needs, relying on just a few friends and themselves to see the project to its completion. They finished the entire kit-out for them and their two dogs for $45,000. Now, they are living their best lives.
Allison says that they love the simplicity of their lifestyle and how it has caused them to change how they live. They worked hard to become debt-free, reduce their financial responsibilities, and be more conscious of their finances and footprint. Now, they get to enjoy daily freedom and have time to spend on themselves.
Colorado couple Allison and Nick purchased a 40-foot 2006 International school bus for $5,000 and spent $45,000 renovating it for life on the road. They painted the exterior in a dromedary camel brown color with white accents and changed the school bus door to an RV door for security and thermal efficiency. Now, they have a keypad lock that allows them to enter a code to get into their home on wheels.
The entry to the school bus features a layer of cement board with mandala ceramic tiles on top. The brown hints in the tiles work in beautiful harmony with the tan coloring of the bus’s exterior.
Allison and Nick put a lot of thought into the entrance to the bus, making sure it was a space they could keep their shoes and wipe down the dogs on wet days. It features grippy porcelain pebble tile that transitions into warming acacia flooring. The entry also has a crate for easy storage of shoes, sunscreen, and other products they use daily.
Allison and Nick’s bus is heated by a small wood-burning stove in the heart of the bus, surrounded by the same mandala tiles featured in the entrance. While working with the curves was challenging, they did an excellent job of tying the look together.
The kitchen is the heart of the bus and boasts an eclectic mix of materials for that charming appeal. They opted for a three-foot L-shaped layout to separate the kitchen from the living space, and the area is kitted out with a large sink, two overhead cabinets, and a three-burner stovetop. The acacia floor is warming against the neutrality of the kitchen cabinetry and Calacatta gold quartz countertop. Completing the look is a mother-of-pearl peel-and-stick backsplash
Allison and Nick prioritized functionality and accessibility from the beginning when planning their tiny home on wheels. They created a simple yet functional coffee nook in the kitchen that provided easy access to those morning essentials.
The kitchen has everything this family of four needs to cook up a storm and live a comfortable lifestyle. Opposite the sink and stovetop, they have a food storage area and an RCA side-by-side fridge-freezer. These are positioned adjacent to the bus’s entrance, marking where the acacia wood flooring and pine ceiling begin.
The cloud couch in the living area functions as a guest bed for overnight visitors. It’s nearly as large as a queen-size bed and is positioned on a custom panel from Thailand. There is plenty of storage space for extra cushions, the 55L fresh water tank, and plumbing underneath the panel.
When Allison and Nick were designing their house on wheels, they had a list of ‘must haves’. On that list was an open space for the dogs to lounge, an oversized couch, and separate desks. Their living room has all these things and more. They also have a Samsung Frame TV by the sofa to function as a TV or artwork. It can also swivel out for easier viewing.
Nick’s nook is set up for work or play. He has a black walnut desk with a stunning live edge, and this has plenty of space for his computers for gaming, work, or study.
On the opposite side of the bus, you find Allison’s desk. She has an extendable gateleg table with extra storage, and this is positioned next to the windows for plenty of natural light during the day. Being next to the fire also means she’s warm and cozy in winter.
Even buses can have hallways. Allison and Nick created a hallway area and utilized the wheel well as a step-down feature with those gorgeous mandala tiles.
Allison and Nick used a beautiful old door, which they found at an antique shop, for their bathroom.
Having a large bathroom was pivotal for the pair. They wanted to be able to move around and have privacy if they had guests. Their bathroom features a sink, vanity, bath, and composting toilet. It boasts light colors, a window for light and ventilation, and a charming feature wall.
Allison and Nick decided to turn a stock tank into a bathtub, and its position next to the composting toilet works perfectly.
Above the bath is a Nebia rainfall shower that provides a mist-like shower to save water. It’s efficient, comfortable, and luxurious. Outside the shower, they laid porcelain pebble tiles with sanded grout.
Storage is essential in any tiny home and bus. They purchased cabinets and drawers from IKEA and cut them to fit the bus’s curvatures. Nick also constructed a wine rack from the branches of an oak tree behind his mom’s home, and the natural elements work in harmony with the lightness of the pine ceiling.
The bedroom is a beautifully light and natural space with air and light coming in from all sides. Nick and Allison love enjoying views of whichever beautiful spot they park up at. You can stay up to date with this traveling Colorado couple on YouTube, TikTok, and Instagram.