If you’re a fan of HGTV’s Fixer Upper, then you know all too well the show features Chip and Joanna Gaines, a married couple who own and operate Magnolia Homes, a remodeling and design business in Waco, Texas.
Fixer Upper shows the process by which the couple turn dilapidated houses into lovely homes to help revitalize the neighborhoods throughout central Texas.
The show is such a hit that Joanna has even scored her own spin-off called Fixer Upper: Behind the Design. But what about behind the scenes of the show? We reveal 10 fun facts about the show even the most ardent fans may not know.
#1 – Homeowners don’t get to keep the $20,000-30,000 worth of furniture and accessories that Joanna used to stage the house.
However, they have the option to buy whichever pieces of furniture or decorative items they want to keep — most of which come from (surprise, surprise) Joanna’s store, Magnolia Market.
#2 – Even though we only see a few rooms during the big reveal, Joanna does finish all the rooms; she just doesn’t stage all of them.
#3 – Their Magnolia House Bed & Breakfast in McGregor, Texas isn’t actually a traditional bed and breakfast. Rather, it’s a vacation rental and it’s pretty much booked indefinitely. If you do manage to snag a reservation, rooms will run you $695-$995 a night. (Cha-ching!)
#4 – The software that Joanna uses to demonstrate her design ideas…? It’s actually 3D modeling software called SketchUp for Interior Design.
The animation over the camera footage is done by the video editing and animation team of Fixer Upper, not by Joanna herself
#5 – Most people can’t guess Joanna’s ethnicity, which she says she gets asked about a lot.
“Although I did play Pocahontas in high school, I am not Native American,” she writes on her blog. “My father is half Lebanese/half German and my mother is full Korean.”
#6 – The renovations typically take 8 weeks.
#7 – Word has it Chip and Joanna don’t actually help homeowners find fixer-uppers to buy. They prefer if you already have a fixer-upper before applying to be on the show. So the house-hunting we see in the first half-hour is mostly just fabricated for entertainment purposes.
#8 – Joanna has no interior design background.
“I was actually a communications major and had never done design,” she says. “I had always had a dream to open up a boutique of some sort. I didn’t know what kind of boutique, but we found this little fixer upper building and tackled that project together in the first year of marriage, and that’s when Magnolia opened, our retail location. I sold a bunch of products that would go in the home.”
#9 – Despite working in television, Chip and Joanna do not own a TV—and haven’t for 12 years.
“Our first year of marriage, we had a fun couple that was our pre-marital counselors and they said, ‘Hey, we want to challenge y’all for the first six months of marriage, don’t do a TV,'” Joanna says. “Then, six months later we looked at each other and said, ‘How about another six months?’ And it just became one of those things where, 12 years later, we still don’t own one.”