Chip and Joanna Gaines are celebrating 17 years of marriage, as the two said ‘I do’ in 2003, at a beautiful garden house in Waco, Texas.
Chip took to Instagram to celebrate their anniversary with a throwback photo of the Fixer Upper couple on their wedding day.
He captioned the photo with a sweet message saying, “Juuuust married! Everything about you has made everything about me better. And 17 years later I’m still learning from and loving on the most incredible woman in the world.”
He continued saying, “After all these years Joanna Lea Stevens, you really are the girl of my dreams.. Happy 17th sweet girl. I love you?”
Throughout the past 17 years, they have become icons in the world of home renovation … Let’s take a look back at Chip and Joanna’s love story!
How Did They Meet?
Although the two both attended Baylor University at the same time, their paths never crossed there. It wasn’t until 2001, after Chip and Joanna were both graduated, that they met at her father’s auto shop in Waco, Texas, a shop that Chip frequented a lot.
Chip told POPSUGAR, “Her dad made the mistake of putting a pic of the family behind the counter at his shop. I knew I’d marry her one day just by the picture on the wall.” Chip then admitted to continuing to go back to the shop pretty often looking for the chance to meet Joanna.
According to their memoir “The Magnolia Story”, Chip was almost an hour and a half late to pick up Joanna for their first date.
Although Chip insists that he was only 20 minutes late, Joanna writes in the book, “He didn’t apologize for being late, either. He had so much confidence. I don’t know. I can’t explain it. Only Chip could be an hour and a half late and have no one mad about it.”
The two spent their first date eating fried chicken while sitting on the front porch of a restaurant, they revealed in an interview with Texas Monthly.
Even though Chip and Joanna really hit it off and had a great time together on their first date, it was months before they went on their second date.
Chip revealed in “The Magnolia Story” the reasoning being that he had a bet with his roommate to find out who could wait the longest before calling their date back. Saying in the book, “I really wanted that $50 from John! That’s the only reason I didn’t call.”
Chip and Joanna dated for two years before getting engaged.
Their engagement story goes like this – Chip told Joanna that he was taking her to a private concert a few hours away from Waco, Texas. But instead he drove to a nearby shopping center, where both of their parents and siblings were waiting, and got down on one knee in front of all their family.
Then after Joanna said yes, Chip took her to a jewelry store to design her own engagement ring.
They tied the knot on May 31, 2003, in the Earle Harrison House in Waco, Texas in front of all their family and friends.
Moved into Their First House Together – and it was a Fixer Upper!
After their honeymoon, Chip and Joanna got to work on their first house. They lived in the home while renovating it.
Joanna spoke about the house in a recent Instagram post saying, “To this day, if you ask us what our favorite house we ever lived in we both go back to this little white 800-square-foot home [pictured above]. We were broke and were forced to be creative with our resources and we were proud as punch about this place. Most of what I learned creatively stemmed from this little fixer upper.”
Opening Magnolia Market
In the same year that they got married and renovated their first home together, Chip and Joanna borrowed $5,000 and opened their first store – Magnolia Market!
Joanna said in an Instagram post, “I was extremely grateful for the forty customers that came in that day to support us.”
Growing their Family
Next up on the to do list for Chip and Joanna was to start their family. The couple now has 5 kids, 15-year-old Drake (named after the Drake Hotel in New York, where they had their honeymoon), 13-year-old Ella, 11-year-old Duke, 10-year-old Emmie, and 2-year-old Crew.
The Start of ‘Fixer Upper’
In 2012, Chip and Joanna were approached by a television producer, after seeing Joanna’s design blog, about filming a home renovation show for HGTV.
They were wary about saying yes at first, but eventually they got onboard and began filming ‘Fixer Upper’.
The pilot episode aired with 1.9 million viewers, and it wasn’t long before HGTV renewed the show for five seasons.
Expanding Their Business
Over the next few years, Chip and Joanna got involved in many new business ventures. They turned a run-down area of Waco into a booming marketplace with their Magnolia Market at the Silos.
They launched a line of paint colors, wallpaper designs, and furniture. And not only did they publish the first issue of their magazine “The Magnolia Journal”, but they also published their joint memoir and New York Times Best Seller, “The Magnolia Story”!
Their Very Own Television Network!
Most recently, Chip and Joanna announced the launch of their new television network, Magnolia Network, coming this summer 2020!
According to the press release, the network will be “inspired by Magnolia and driven by the Gaines’ creative vision.”
Congrats to Chip and Joanna on their 17th anniversary! Starting from the bottom in their very own little fixer upper, to soaring to the top of the house flipping industry – and doing it together every step of the way.
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Julia is an Entertainment Writer at Feeling the Vibe Magazine. She is currently a Journalism student at Temple University. She is always in the know about everything celebrity and pop-culture.