Chip & Joanna Gaines' Tuned-Up Looks Since Their HGTV Debut Speaks Volumes

Chip and Joanna Gaines have worked their way into viewers' hearts worldwide with their picture-perfect family and marriage, flourishing businesses, jaw-dropping interiors, and simplistic but stunning design aesthetics. Still, as down-home and country as the Waco, Texas couple still appear to be, they've morphed into more glamorous, TV-friendly versions of themselves since the launch of "Fixer Upper" in 2013. But then, money will do that; look at the Kardashians. Although it has to be said, it's unlikely any Ray J and Kim Kardashian-style sex tapes or plastic surgery secrets are lurking in Chip and Joanne's perfectly fitted and color-coordinated closet.

Before Chip and Joanna landed their hit HGTV show, whose pilot episode debuted in May 2013, she worked at her dad's tire shop, something she thought she would do for the rest of her life. "I always thought I would take over his shop when he retired; this was at least the plan," she captioned a Father's Day tribute in June 2019.

"Once I met Chip I started realizing I had some hidden dreams in my heart but was scared to let my dad down. When he got wind that I was ready for something else, he quickly sat me down and told me to go for it and do what my heart was telling me to do." She has never looked back, and nothing has been the same since — not even their physical appearances!

Chip and Joanna dressed up for the Kentucky Derby

It didn't take long for Chip and Joanna Gaines to start enjoying the finer things in life once "Fixer Upper" turned them into reality TV stars. The couple hit up the Kentucky Derby in May 2015, dressed up to the nines. Joanna wore a stylish, wide-brimmed hat, while Chip looked dapper with his hair neatly waxed and combed. "This place is amazing! #KYDerby," Joanna captioned a selfie of the two.

Maybe Joanne was getting tips for the future. She shared in the Summer 2024 issue of Magnolia Journal that she'd wanted to ride horses since childhood but developed a fear of getting hurt. "I've always longed to know how it would feel to fly, so wild, so free. And the back of a horse seemed the surest way possible," Joanna wrote. "Of course, as I got older and witnessed enough people get injured or bucked off, that was that. Fear, as it's known to do, rooted itself deeper than any childhood dream ever could."

However, Joanna managed to overcome her reticence and started to take lessons in the fall of 2023. It's been a slow process with many ups and downs, but she's finally feeling like she's left her fears behind, her tenseness is starting to disappear, and her confidence is growing. "I'm relearning what it feels like to get out of my head and let instinct take the reins, which for me looks like living more curiously, more courageously," she explained.

Chip and Joanna have hobknobbed with music royalty

Another trapping of fame is hanging out with other famous people, even bonafide superstars like U2 frontman Bono. Back when Chip and Joanna were broke and "nobodies," they'd likely have had to scrimp and save to splash out for tickets to go see U2 in concert. However, it's a whole different scenario these days. "'Reaching for higher ground.' -Bono #preach @u2 @onecampaign," Joanna captioned a pic of Chip and herself mugging for the camera with Bono backstage in May 2017. The Irish band was playing at the AT&T Stadium in Dallas, Texas, as part of "The Joshua Tree Tour," celebrating the 30th anniversary of its iconic album.

The couple is music crazy, even creating a special Spotify Christmas playlist under the name of their TV network, Magnolia. "Make a cup of hot chocolate, get a fire going, and enjoy our Christmas playlist! We hope this nostalgic collection of songs reminds you of your favorite holiday memories and inspires you to create new ones this season," they wrote about the playlist titled "The Most Wonderful Time of the Year."

There are no U2 songs, despite the band releasing a slew of holiday tracks over the years. Instead, there is a mix of classic and modern Holiday tunes, such as Mariah Carey's "All I Want for Christmas," Ella Fitzgerald's "Sleigh Ride," and Johnyswim's "Have Yourself a Merry Little Christmas."

Chip and Joanna made the Time 100

In April 2019, Chip and Joanna Gaines made the esteemed Time 100 list, something they could never have dreamed of before HGTV came knocking. The annual list celebrates the "most influential" artists, icons, titans, leaders, innovators, and pioneers of the past twelve months.

The couple was included for being influential artists. Their close friend, Tim Tebow, wrote a tribute, calling them "two incredible people with incredible hearts." The former NFL star lauded Chip and Joanne for their ability to "impact lives with extreme generosity — first with their HGTV show, 'Fixer Upper,' and soon with their own TV network." Tebow praised their strong faith, dedication to helping those in need and love of people. Chip and Joanna took the opportunity to tease their new project, The Magnolia Network, which was formally launched in January 2022. "We do construction for a living, we raise babies for a living, we're married for a living, so all of those elements will definitely be in the show," Chip announced to the crowd.

The two were clearly thrilled to be included. They posted a pic of themselves looking totally tuned up in a glass elevator, with the Manhattan skyline behind them "Woke up this morning feeling like it was all a dream. Thank you @time for including us in the #time100. What an honor to be in the room last night," Joanna captioned an Instagram pic.

Chip and Joanna chowed down in style

Hailing from the Lone Star state, Chip and Joanna Gaines are used to feasting on beef. However, they weren't at a Texas Roadhouse in July 2021. Instead, they were eating in style at New York City's The Polo Bar — a Ralph Lauren restaurant, following the soft launch of the Magnolia Network.

"There's no one I'd rather eat an entire platter of sliders with after a dream of a week launching @magnolianetwork. Thank you all for celebrating with us this week!" Joanna captioned a photo of the two enjoying fancy, tiny burgers in the upscale eatery. "To our amazingly talented & creative team that helped get us here—Thank YOU! We are so proud of you and forever grateful for all the hard work you have poured into this."

Chip and Joanna had hoped to launch the Network fully in 2021, but they had to wait until January 2022 due to the COVID pandemic limiting the range of content they had to air. "In streaming, you click through and find the show you want to watch," Network president Allison Page told Variety. "Day one on linear, you can't stack a bunch of programs together that are all premieres. We realized in the spring of 2020 when COVID hit that we actually had enough for day one, and we had enough for maybe day five, but we didn't have enough for probably day 15. You do the math."

Chip and Joanna feasted at the White House

Chip and Joanna Gaines knew they had really made it in April 2023 when they were invited to a dinner at the White House. Joanne busted out in a simple, classic off-the-shoulder black gown for the special event, while Chip plumped for a black suit, tie, and white shirt.

"What an honor it was to be a part of tonight's State Dinner to celebrate the 70 year alliance between the United States of America and my mother's home country of South Korea," Joanna captioned a photo of the two smiling in the dining room. "Coming off the heels of our incredible trip to Seoul, this evening was another reminder of just how proud I am to be a Korean American."

According to Reuters, Korean-American chef Edward Lee prepared the feast, hosted by President Biden and first lady Jill Biden, in honor of South Korean President Yoon Suk Yeol and his wife Kim Keon Hee's state visit. Vases of six-foot-high cherry blossoms filled the East Room of the Executive mansion. Guests feasted on a fusion meal comprised of Maryland crab cakes with cabbage, kohlrabi, fennel and cucumber slaw, chilled squash soup, braised beef ribs with butter bean grits, sorghum-glazed carrots, and pine nuts, finished off with a deconstructed banana split, combining flavor profiles from both countries.