Q&A: Life, Design, Fixer Upper, & the Farm June 2, 2015 I want to thank you guys so much for taking the time to send in your questions! I really had fun answering them. Come back next week, these Q&A blog posts will be featured every Tuesday in the month of June! Kara Miller Marsh asked: “We are building a house, and wondered what you use for new shiplap? Is it custom made, or do you have a supplier?” I’m glad you asked! Many times in these renovations we come across shiplap behind the sheetrock, but it’s not hard to recreate the look. You can simply go to your local lumber store and get tongue and groove pine panels (Btwn 6-8 Inches thick). The trick when installing shiplap is using a spacer so you can see the gap between each line. I love shiplap because it offers a clean look with some texture and interest. @bleu_love asked: “How do you find time to take care of a farm, run the growing empire of Magnolia, shoot a TV show, and raise a family? Do you have a day off during the week? It sounds exhausting, but you seem to do it with such ease!” My favorite things to do when I’m not working are hanging with the family and being on the farm. It rejuvenates me and inspires me. I really enjoy work and I’m passionate about it. It is quite busy these days, but there is a huge level of grace to get stuff done when it needs to get done. My days off are on the weekends. I love sleeping in, staying in my PJs, gardening, and working around the house. The garden is my favorite place so you will find me there every evening. It’s soothing to my soul and I realized with all the hustle and bustle this is the very thing I need to relax and unwind. There is much truth to “stopping and smelling the roses”. Heather Teems asked: “Hi Jo Jo! Something I’ve always wondered when watching Fixer Upper- do the clients keep the furniture and everything in the home? You always stage it so well but usually ‘staging’ a home means that it goes once the new owner moves in. Just curious!” Hi Heather! It all depends on the client and their budget. Our show features real clients with real budgets. The furniture budget is not part of the renovation budget, it’s something some clients add at the end. About half of our clients already have all their own furnishings (some of which I use for the reveal), and others buy the items I decorate the home with. The main reason I decorate the rooms for the reveal is because I want the clients to get the full picture of how to maximize their newly renovated space. @baker_violet asked: “Have you ever been stumped as to what to do to a room? Do you always have instant ideas?” Since every project and client is different, I make sure and study both the client’s wants and needs and the potential of the home. Sometimes I walk into a house and things come together quickly. Other times, it’s a slower process with some trial and error. The biggest challenge for me is pulling a look all together when you have a couple who are both on opposite sides of the design equation. I am motivated by the challenge and the biggest reward comes when the couple walks in and they both say it feels like home! @mary.freshwater asked: “Hi Joanna! My husband is a youth pastor so I have become quite the DIY wife on a budget. 🙂 We are in the process of trying to purchase our first home, & it’s hard not to feel discouraged by the options in our price range – other than opening up walls. 🙂 What are the first couple of budget friendly things that you recommend for fixer uppers?” Hi Mary! Start small and take it one project at a time. Nothing has to be done immediately. Simply enjoy your home and get a good feel for the space before you start changing things. A few simple things to do if you are on a budget are kitchen backsplash, painting cabinets and walls, and updating light fixtures (using a licensed electrician). @rmlauterbach asked: “Will you be airing a special on the transformation of the silos to your new workplace/market store?” We are so excited about the silos project and we anticipate the completion of phase one towards the end of summer. The silos will be part of the episodes in season three, so you can watch the progress of this fun project from start to completion. We can’t wait to share it with you! @lusciousandlively asked: “What do you and Chip do to keep things fresh and fun – you always seem to be so happy together and genuinely in love – what’s the secret?” We try to go on weekly date nights because we feel like it’s important to carve out time for just the two of us. We really enjoy working with each other and tackling projects as a team. Our marriage is not perfect, but we’ve learned over the years that fighting against each other gets us nowhere. We remind ourselves that we are on the same team. @sunshine_11111 asked: “What is the farm life really like?” Lots of mud these days! We love our animals; we’ve recently had 10-15 new baby chickens and three brand new baby goats. There are always surprises and lots of work. The garden is my deal and the farm animals are Chip’s. He really enjoys working the farm. @jwaaron asked: “How often do you switch out or update your decor? Do you change with the seasons?” My key pieces rarely change because once I find something I like, I stick with it. As far as pillows and florals, I switch them out in spring and around Christmas.