2 Kaleidoscope Artists & Their Creative School Bus Conversion Ideas

by Simplify

Shelly and Randy worked as kaleidoscope artists for years before turning their artistic skills to their DIY school bus conversion.

The conversion took them a year and a half to build instead of the original six months they had planned for, but they both agree that the wait was worth it and are grateful for the experiences they’ve had on their bus adventures.

Shelly and Randy’s school bus, Miss Mary, is a Thomas Built Buses school bus and measures 40 feet. Shelly and Randy raised the roof at different points, by 16 inches, and by 24 inches above their bedroom.

The reason for their extra roof raise is their unique Murphy bed, which is a sleeping space by night but transforms into an art studio when it’s folded up during the day.

Shelly and Randy worked as kaleidoscope artists

Having a space to do art was especially important to Shelly. The couple incorporated materials from their kaleidoscope-making business throughout the build, making it artistic and sustainable at the same time.

One example of this is the beautiful zebra wood kitchen countertops. Shelly also insisted that they install a cork board that can act as an inspiration board, where they can post messages and reminders of “what life’s all about”.

The couple avoided cabinets to give the bus a more airy, spacious, feeling. Instead, they use baskets for storage, with bungee cords to prevent things from flying when they’re on the road.

The bus has a striking green exterior. The color was chosen by Randy, and he has no regrets, especially since it makes it easy to tell where they’ve parked.

Creative school bus conversion ideas

This beautiful school bus conversion is providing Randy and Shelly with a wonderful school bus retirement, as well as a creative space where the couple can continue their passion for art.

For more tiny home retirement stories, discover how this woman is using a tiny house as a retirement plan solution or this retired couple's peaceful tiny house in the mountains.

To see more videos, check out the Tiny House Giant Journey YouTube channel.

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