Weird Things About Nate Berkus And Jeremiah Brent's Relationship

Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent are one of interior design's top celeb couples to watch, matched perhaps only by the likes of Fixer Upper stars Chip and Joanna Gaines.

After establishing his design firm at the age of 24, Berkus has become one of the world's most recognizable interior designers. In addition to frequent appearances on The Oprah Winfrey Show and a hosting gig on his Emmy-winning talk show, The Nate Berkus Show, he's also written the New York Times bestseller The Things That Matter. Meanwhile, his husband, Brent, rose to fame in 2011 as fashion designer Rachel Zoe's personal assistant on The Rachel Zoe Project. After creating his own firm, Jeremiah Brent Design, he went on to host the Emmy-winning series, Home Made Simple, on OWN.

In 2017, this dynamic duo teamed up to launch TLC's Nate & Jeremiah By Design. While these lovebirds have continued to rule the world of interior design entertainment, they've also built a beautiful life together with their two young children, daughter Poppy and son Oskar. But how much do you really know about Nate and Jeremiah's picture-perfect romance? Here are some of the weirder facts about their marriage.

Their first date almost didn't happen

Berkus and Brent were friends for years before they took their relationship to the next level in 2012. While it only took a moment for them to realize that the other was "the one," their first date actually almost didn't happen.

"I didn't even want to go," Brent admitted on Hillary Sawchuk's A Drink With series. During a visit to New York City, he and his future husband had randomly run into each another at a friend's party, where the latter suggested they go antique shopping. "I thought, 'Great. Can't wait to go antique shopping,'" Brent sarcastically added. Luckily, he stuck it out and his life changed forever. "We had this insanely beautiful afternoon that never ended," he said. "That was it. I literally never left. ... I definitely never really believed in true love because I didn't understand it but now I've experienced it."

It was similar experience for Berkus, who told Oprah Winfrey that he'd just taken a six-month break from dating after the end of a serious relationship. "I was sort of coming out of this whole thing and he walked in the door and I was like, 'Well, this is what I was waiting for,'" he said, adding, "I knew that minute. I knew within 15 minutes."

A surprise proposal

Despite their slow-burn start, things heated up really quickly between these two once they got together, and it wasn't long until talk of marriage and kids was on the table.

Berkus surprised his husband-to-be when he popped the question less than nine months into their relationship. "We were on a buying trip for One Kings Lane in Peru and we went on the top of Machu Picchu and we walked down into this valley temple place and he asked me to marry him," Brent recalled to E! News. "I fell apart like full ugly-girl kind of cry."

"I've known since our first date that Jeremiah was who I wanted to spend the rest of my life with," Berkus told People. "As we've shared the news of our engagement and been met with so much excitement and support we're both reminded of how important it is that every person have the legal right to marry the one they love."

The president of OWN officiated their wedding

Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent made history when they tied the knot in the first-ever same-sex wedding ceremony held at the New York Public Library in May 2014. The couple's intimate Jewish-Buddhist ceremony — the perfect blend of their individual tastes, backgrounds, and aesthetics — was officiated by none other than the then-president of OWN, Sheri Salata.

Berkus and Brent, donning J. Crew and Saint Laurent suits, respectively, exchanged self-written vows in front of their 200 guests, including famous faces like Oprah WinfreyRachael Ray, and Dr. Oz. According to an Us Weekly source, the vows were "definitely emotional." The insider noted that Berkus had told his soon-to-be husband, "I can't wait to spend my life with you and start a family together."

The Gospel for Teens/The Mama Foundation for the Arts choir closed out the ceremony with a rousing performance, and DJ Mad Marj played the after-party, which featured a surprise performance of "American Boy" by Estelle.

The evening was the picture-perfect celebration of the newlyweds' love — apart from one major faux pas: During the ceremony, Salata accidentally knocked over the ceremonial glass, which was meant to be stepped on as per Jewish tradition, leaving it shattered on the floor. Luckily, the couple laughed it off. "It was hilarious," Berkus told People. "And something we'll be laughing about 20 years from now!"

Their daughter's name was the making of a dream

Berkus and Brent welcomed their first child together, daughter Poppy, via surrogate in March 2015. "We are so excited to finally be a family of 3!" Berkus wrote on Facebook at the time, adding that they "couldn't be happier to be embarking on this life changing journey that is parenthood."

But how did the new parents, who couldn't wait to expand their family, come up with their little girl's name? It turns out it was the making of a dream. 

"I'd never met a Poppy or known a Poppy," Brent said during his A Drink With interview. "[But] I had this crazy dream about us on a beach with this little girl with blonde wavy hair and her name was Poppy," he added, explaining that he and his husband had just started dating and were traveling at the time. "I told him about it and fast forward four years later we find out we're having our daughter and I looked at him and he goes, 'It must be Poppy,' so that was always it."

Changing the family dynamic

Before welcoming their second child, son Oskar, in March 2018, Berkus and Brent were understandably anxious about changing their family-of-three dynamic.

"Anything right now that's uncertain with us on the precipice of having another child just stresses me out on another level," Brent told Berkus during the season two premiere of their show (via People). As the latter explained to their viewers, "We've kind of gotten into this beautiful rhythm with Poppy, the three of us with this cute synergy. And that's about to all shift." However, Berkus added, "The baby will bring their own energy and dynamic to the house. But we're all excited about it."

Of course, it wasn't long until the adorable family of four settled into a new rhythm together. "It's much easier than the first time around. We know what to do," Brent told People magazine, explaining that while they'd "heard all these horror stories" about having baby no. 2, "It's been so beautiful." He added, "Poppy is super sweet and really nurturing. And Oskar is a love bug who just cuddles you."

Only two weeks after their son's birth, the Brent-Berkus crew were already serving up some major #FamilyGoals.

Their son is named after a former flame

Long before he and Brent started dating, Berkus was left devastated after his partner, photographer Fernando Bengoechea, tragically died in a tsunami during their visit to Sri Lanka in 2004. However, his memory has always played major role in Berkus and Brent's relationship, as the two take great care to honor Bengoechea through shared traditions, decorating their home with his paintings and even naming their son after him.

"His middle name was Oskar," Berkus told People, explaining that the surprising tribute was actually his husband's idea. "[Fernando's] a part of our love story," Brent added. "It's such an important chapter in Nate's life. So the idea that we can honor his memory in a beautiful way was exciting to us."

During their joint appearance on Oprah: Where Are They Now? in 2016, Berkus told Brent, "You were the first person to come into my life and not be threatened or afraid, not afraid to poke the damage and say, 'That happened. Let's talk about it. Let's figure it out, and how can it be part of our world in a way that's healthy?' And so it is" (via the Huffington Post).

Shouldering a heavy responsibility

As a same-sex couple raising a family and living openly on Nate & Jeremiah By Design, Berkus and Brent feel a deep sense of responsibility to the LGBTQ community.

"It's a renovation show, but you're also getting to come into the lives of two gay dads and their family, so that's a great thing in and of itself," Brent told People, explaining that their goal was to use their platform to open doors, break down barriers, and "[let] people know that we love the way you love."

But their show isn't just about gaining acceptance, it's also about the importance of representation in the media. "What does it feel like for a young gay, transgender or bisexual child to watch a family that looks like them, living openly on television?" Brent asked while the pair accepted the Murray-Reese Family Award at the Family Equality Council's Impact Awards in March 2018 (via The Hollywood Reporter). He added, "It is not lost on us. ... We know that we now have a responsibility to love visibly."

Targeted by haters

This sense of responsibility Berkus and Brent feel toward representing the LGBTQ community manifested itself in the classiest clapback after Derick Dillard of Duggar family fame slammed the couple in a series of homophobic tweets.

"What a travesty of family," the former Counting On star wrote in April 2018. "It's sad how blatant the liberal agenda is, such that it both highlights and celebrates a lifestyle so degrading to children on public television as if it should be normal."

Dillard, who was famously fired from TLC months earlier after bullying the network's transgender teen star, Jazz Jennings, later doubled down on his position amid swift backlash online. Meanwhile, the Brent-Berkus family took the high road. As Berkus tweeted in response, "My hope with having a show like #NandJByDesign on @TLC, where we go into people's homes and welcome viewers into ours, is that we can start to break down barriers & normalize the way our family looks & the way our family loves." Well said.

Fighting about design

As famous interior designers with great taste and a hit TV show, it's no surprise that Berkus and Brent are often on the same page when it comes to creating incredible homes together. "Design is the one thing that we always agree on," Berkus told People in 2017. Brent clarified, "I'd say that we always end up agreeing." However, there's one element of design these two constantly bicker over: the lengths of their drapes.

As Berkus told InStyle, "Jeremiah and I have a fight about this all the time." Explaining that Brent likes the longer look of an informal Belgian puddle, he continued, "[I like a] really tailored look, and I like mixing a roller shade with drapery panels because I like that layered feeling."

"It makes me certifiably insane, as a triple Virgo, to watch people's fingers on my drapery," Berkus said of the longer style his husband prefers. "And I hate walking into a room and having to readjust them all the time." Makes sense.

Relationship goals

Nate Berkus and Jeremiah Brent's relationship may have its fair share of quirks, but this couple is clearly meant to be.

As they keep busy balancing their successful careers with fatherhood, this adorable pair prioritizes making time for one another, whether it's a romantic date night at their favorite Los Angeles restaurant or simply a "sweatpants and Netflix" kind of evening (via Us Weekly). But as far as their sweetest moments go, it's difficult to beat how Berkus and Brent commemorated their four-year wedding anniversary in May 2018.

"Four amazing years, 10 homes, 2 kids, 2 worn out passports. I love you JB," Berkus wrote on Instagram, captioning a cute snapshot of the two holding hands and beaming with happiness on their big day. Meanwhile, Brent shared a similar pic, writing, "4 years later and life continues to crack open in the most beautiful ways. Home for me will always be by your side hand in hand. Happy Wedding Anniversary @nateberkus."

Admit it, you're "awwing" just as much as we are! Seriously, these two are total #RelationshipGoals.