Extreme Makeover: First Car Edition

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This week, I got something a little different in my inbox when I went to check my email.  It was almost a cry for help, a plea for salvation from madness.  It said:

“Hi Sammie.  I read your article about your first car and a few weeks ago I just got my first car too.  My parents made me pay for it just like yours did.  I can’t afford much but I got a 2006 Ford Escape.  It isn’t falling apart like your Baby Blue but it is so UGLY!!!!!  I don’t want to act ungrateful but what can I do?

-Katie”

With no photographic evidence of the offending 2006 Ford Escape that was ruining Katie’s life, I took to Google for visual aid – and she wasn’t lying.  While the newer Ford Escape models are lean, mean driving machines, the first generation of Ford’s foray into SUVs was…not quite as photogenic, to say the least.  We all have our gawky adolescent phase.

If you read my post about my first car, you know I’m no stranger to ugly cars.  So I figured I’d help Katie out and do whatever I could to help make her first car one she’d remember – fondly, that is.

Here are a few of the seat covers options I gave good ol’ Katie Kat to make her 2006 Ford Escape more suitable for a millennial high school senior.  See if you can guess which one she went with.

Kitty Purry

kitty purry

Everyone loves leopard print.  We can pretend that we’re too grown up and sophisticated for it all we want, but the truth is that deep down inside it’s everybody’s guilty pleasure.  For Katie’s 2006 Ford Escape of all things, I think she gets a pass to be unapologetic.

Purple leopard seat covers are a surefire way to add some personality into an older car.  Plus, the ultra-velvety velour is a massive upgrade from the standard cloth seats that come with the Ford Escape.  It’s like a warm, fuzzy hug.

But don’t stop there.  You can never have enough purple.  Jazz up that boring steering wheel with a matching steering wheel cover and while you’re at it, add an unexpected pop of color to that floor too with some carpet floor mats with a purple trim.  Accessories make or break a look, and this is a look worth going all out for.

Modern Edge

Maybe Katie wants to make a statement that’s a little more subtle.  In that case, dialing it back on the color and using it as an accent instead of the main attraction can be a smart (and stylish) choice.  Keeping it simple doesn’t have to be boring.  These seat covers are black with gray stripes framing the edges, but the shock of color cutting through the front seats is enough to draw eyes and call attention without being too in-your-face.

Keeping with the theme, solid black floor mats livened up with piping around the edges to match the color of the seat covers is a sharp way to tie everything together.  Plus, bringing the strike of color from the floor mats into the back seats will brighten things up to balance out the otherwise muted gray and black of the rear seat covers without being overwhelming.

Starlite, Starbrite

Color can be addicting – sometimes just a quick pop here and there isn’t enough.  In that case, Katie can opt for a bolder approach and try out some PU leather seat covers with a duo-striped design to brighten up her interior and add some much needed fresh energy.  These leather seat covers are treated with a protective coating, so the vivid color will stand up to the test of time and won’t fade or crack.

And don’t forget to accessorize!  The brilliant colors of our TravelBrite silicone accessories are the perfect match for the bright hues of these seat covers, not to mention they come in handy on a daily basis.  Whether Katie wants to color coordinate or mix and match with her favorite colors to get a taste of the rainbow, it’s the easiest way to add some cheer to her ride.

One Step Wonder

For a high schooler on a budget, buying an entire matching set of seat covers and accessories might be a little rough on the wallet.  If Katie would rather pinch her pennies from her after school job to save up for something much cooler (like, perhaps, a car that isn’t a 2006 Ford Escape) she might want to look into a more affordable option, like an accessory set that comes with the whole kit and caboodle.

Both options are made of lush velour and come with a matching steering wheel cover and fuzzy dice.  Plus, the easy one-piece bucket design of the seat covers is made to slip over the seats like a t-shirt, saving precious time.  Between studying for finals, applying to college, working, and boy problems, Katie has enough to worry about.

Better Than Leather

It’s actually not as impossible for Katie to give her 2006 Ford Escape a total facelift as one might think.  You’d be surprised what some leather accessories can do for your interior.  Leather seat covers can instantly upgrade a car to make it look newer and fresher, and PU leather will give Katie the look and feel of real leather seats without the price tag or the upkeep.

A leather steering wheel cover can go a long way in making a car look a few years younger, especially if the original steering wheel is beat up or damaged.  Plus, it never hurts to keep the color scheme going.  And to really seal the deal, Katie can top it all off with a set of carpet floor mats trimmed with PU leather to match her seat covers.  If that isn’t the facelift of the century, I’m not sure what is.

Decisions, Decisions

It didn’t take long for Katie to get back to me – two days later, bright and early on Wednesday morning, I had another email waiting in my inbox for me.

“Thank you so much!!!!  I love everything!  I linked my mom to your gift guide and I’m dropping hints about the leopard seat covers set. 😀 I hope I can get the silicone stuff too because they are so cute!!”

So there you have it.  Everyone has their own tastes – in Katie’s case, she has a penchant for the wild side but she wants the dazzling brights of our TravelBrite silicone set as well.  I have to give her points for being slick about it, linking her parents to our Holiday Gift Guide to let them take care of the dirty work.

Make sure you’re being extra nice for Santa this year, Katie!

Do you have an older car that needs a facelift?  What would you do to upgrade your interior?  Let us know in the comments!