In 2003, Chip and Joanna Gaines bought what they call their “Little Shop on Bosque” in Waco, Texas. It became their first-ever Magnolia Market. The sole vision of the market was to stimulate home decor ideas and instill passion within homeowners to love their living spaces. Born in Kansas but raised in the Lonestar State, Joanna Gaines brought in her NYC-inspired eye for original design; she loved simple and fresh styles. Chip Gaines, born in New Mexico but raised a cowboy at heart, had flipped houses for fifteen years. He brought in his constructive skills and drive to conquer whatever was put in front of him.
With his gentle yet persuasive nudge, they put their heads and talents together and made their desire to own a store become a reality. After their first two children, Magnolia Market was temporarily closed in order to focus on family. Flipping houses, on the other hand, was not off the table. This work was meaningful to them, and eventually, it was bursting at the seams. On May 13th, 2013, the dream team made their national debut, flipping Texan houses in HGTV’s Fixer Upper.
Though the two do not typically wander farther than thirty minutes outside of Waco to work, they have filled millions of homes across the United States on TV. For four seasons of the hit series—you can watch full episodes here—viewers have had access to DIY tips, techniques, artistic design, and lots of laughter. If the dynamic duo isn’t talking color schemes or floor plans, they’re playfully picking on one another or shopping with their kiddos. No matter the case, every flipped home gets doused with tender love and care. What sets these projects apart, however, is the faith behind them.
I Am Second sat down with the powerhouse couple in October 2016 and learned how completely opposite people maintain such a strong bond. She plays by the rules, and he breaks them. “Joanna is, like, the purest, most stable person I’ve ever met,” Mr. Gaines says of his wife in the clip. “I like safety,” she confirms. She explains that if she had never met her husband, she’d still just be dreaming about her goals to help people enjoy their homes. On the other end of the scale, C. Gaines is a risk-taker and drives on empty to see how far he can get. According to her, he’s comfortable in his consistent character, but he’s unpredictable. He says that if it weren’t for her, he’d still be trying to prove himself. Being together removed her from her bubble into adventure, and it allowed him to quit being “an actor.”
Mr. and Mrs. Gaines have both discovered new aspects of who God is and what their walks with Christ mean. Chip Gaines relates what his wife has shown him with what he knows about God:
I’ve learned so much about order and structure and processes through my wife, and God is all of those things to me now. But at the beginning, God was just chaotic to me. He was wild. He was untamed. He was unruly, and I liked that.
Joanna Gaines uses coming out of her shell as a solid analogy for what it’s like to follow Christ. Growing up, she believed that playing by the rules would bring blessings, but her husband’s personality showed her, “When you take a step out in faith when it makes absolutely no sense, I think that’s where the greater reward is. There’s no telling where that will take you.” Because of this, she doesn’t want to be limited by comfort zones. She recognizes that any impact she is meant to have in others’ lives is on the other side of that comfort. Whatever purpose God created her for needs to be out in the world.
Both Chip and Joanna Gaines continue to display their faith at home, with their children, at work, and in the world. They intertwine their lives into others’ through their show, their blog, and their monthly Magnolia Journal. Fans can also get a taste of the Gaines life by visiting the reopened Magnolia Market at the Silos where they will enjoy shopping, games, the garden, and prime food choices.
Readers can purchase the team’s book, The Magnolia Story (2016). This story tells of the life they’ve built together: their beginning, their first project, their hardships, the times they almost lost it all, the kooky nature of their parenting, their childhoods, and more. Also available is Chip Gaines’s book, Capital Gaines: Smart Things I Learned Doing Stupid Stuff, which recently hit the market October 2017. Read about how Chip navigates family and business with fearlessness and dedication. His off-the-wall, strategic moves as an entrepreneur can teach you a thing or two you might also need in life. Hearth and Hand, the couple’s home décor line, has graced Target stores’ shelves as of November 5th, 2017.
If you would like some behind-the-scenes commentary on past episodes, click here. For booking and contact info, click here. The fifth and final season of Fixer Upper aired on November 21st, 2017 on HGTV.
Featured Image by Andre Govia