Living the Camper Van Life With FENIX® Innovative Materials

Josh Theberge had it all…except happiness. In giving up his possessions, he’s rediscovered the joy of life on the road

Man sitting in camper van

By all accounts, Josh Theberge was living the American dream in 2016. He owned a successful company, had a waterfront condo, fancy clothes and watches, and a sports car that most people can only dream about. And yet, with all these possessions, something was still missing.

“I was living a life where I was not being true to myself, I felt as if I was projecting an image of someone who I was not just to impress others,” Josh explains. “As the years went by, I was slowly realizing that I was spending more and more time away from the superficial life I had built for myself, and more time taking outdoor trips. A lot of people wait until they retire to go check out all the national parks, but by then they physically can’t do everything. I didn’t want that to happen to me.”

So, in a move straight out of a movie script, Josh sold everything. He started with his watch, and eventually sold his business, expensive wardrobe, car, and home. 

And he moved into a camper van.

Camper van driving on a dirt road with a mountain peak in the background

To be more precise, Josh built out his own camper van in 2017 and began traveling full time.

“Right out of college I worked for a luxury home builder as a project manager, and I later started an investment company where we renovated and rented more than 100 houses,” Josh said. “I had a lot of knowledge in design and residential construction, but no, I had never actually built out a van myself prior to selling my company.” 

When COVID-19 put a pause on his personal travels, Josh and a buddy decided to start flipping vans “until the pandemic thing sorts itself out.” Now, nearly two full years later, VanMakers is a booming business as more and more people have followed Josh’s lead with an appreciation for spending more time outdoors.

As they build more and more vans, Josh realized a need for a better surfacing material.

“On my first couple of vans, I used either a solid surface competitor or quartz, but they just didn’t have the feel I was looking for,” Josh said. “I wanted something that looked like a million bucks, was modern, held up better and saved on weight.”

Josh finally found that material when he stumbled on FENIX® innovative materials in a cabinet shop.

“I had never seen it before, and then when the owner showed me the different color samples, how light it was, and how great it felt, I knew it was exactly what I was looking for,” Josh said.

Camper van interior with FENIX counters

Wanting to try it in his own van first, Josh chose the 12 mm Nero Ingo for a countertop in his second camper van, The Boondocker 2.0. Josh’s friend followed his lead and is using FENIX not only for a countertop, but for camper van cabinets as well.

“When you’re in a small space like a van, you’re constantly bumping into stuff and bringing in dirt from rock climbing and other adventures, so everything just gets more wear and tear,” Josh said. “FENIX is modern, lightweight and durable – perfectly made for camper van interiors.”

Josh is also the owner of Vanlife Outfitters, an information source for anyone who is interested in exploring the Vanlife. Want to try out FENIX Innovative Materials in your camper van or renovation project? Order your free FENIX samples today.

Photos: John Weatherby (@whereisweatherby)
Build by: Vanmakers (@van.makers)
Maxxfan, Isotherm Fridge, Lagun Table supplied by: Vanlife Outfitters (@vanlifeoutfitters)
Lagun Table Top: FENIX Nero Ingo 12mm
Cabinets: Formica Charred Formwood
Counters: FENIX Nero Ingo 12mm

 

You're using an unsupported browser and some features may not work properly. Please upgrade to a modern browser, such as Chrome, Edge, Firefox, or Safari.