We’ve reached the very deadest point of summer and it’s been a hot minute since we put together an update on Chip & Joanna Gaines & the Fixer Upper crew, so we thought we’d marry those two sad facts and make a happy baby. And it turns out that right now is a pretty good time to check in on the Gainses: in addition to their increasingly long list of personal successes, the Fixer Upper Season 5 episode list has officially passed its halfway point.
First up, though: the ICYMI section. Foremost among those updates is Hillcrest Estate, the newest addition to the Magnolia B&B empire. That’s right–if you’ve always wanted to stay at Magnolia House but been frustrated by the fact that it sells out quicker than Hamilton and has never had a night’s vacancy, you’re in luck. Joanna and Chip are opening a second Magnolia-themed bed & breakfast (or “botique hotel,” if you like), and this one’s in the heart of downtown Waco. Reservations are open now, so get to booking!
Beyond that, we managed to miss the big reveal of Chip’s book cover a few weeks back–if you did too, here’s the shot, which is equal parts action-adventure and lovaable goofball and comes complete with a Chip-tastic explanation:
I loved your feedback about the book covers. You know how sometimes you need to hear other opinions to know how you really feel about something? In the very end, when I weighed all the opinions, it was clear which cover felt most like me. In a world where so much feels photoshopped and staged, I really wanted the cover to be authentic and raw. This candid, spur-of-the-moment photo was snapped on the way to the actual photoshoot and I just loved that. Means the world to me that you all chimed in. It wasn't for nothing. I hope you really enjoy the book! #CapitalGaines
Oh–and Fixer Upper recently snagged its first-ever Emmy nomination. NBD. Though it kind of is a BD: how has the show never been nominated before? It’s not like the Emmys just this year added categories for reality TV. And, the charm of its hosts aside, a big part of Fixer Upper‘s appeal is how well put-together the show is. It’s probably best to just file this one under “Yet another awards show mystery” and move on.
And so we do–to the latest on the Fixer Upper Season 5 episode list. Just two days ago, Joanna…revealed…that she & Chip were past the halfway mark on the upcoming season, and Fixer Upper producer Michael Matsumoto confirmed that they had wrapped episode #8. Because the two of them are always working on more than one house at a time, and because they’ve also confirmed that, despite HGTV’s entreaties, they are unwilling to shoot more than 16 original episodes per season, that means the new season is over halfway in the can. Which sounds rude, but is actually very exciting!
We also know a little bit about two of the upcoming reveals. One is almost certain to be former Waco staple the Elite Cafe, which closed its doors last year after 100 years in business.The Gainses promptly bought the property and announced plans to turn it into Magnolia Table, the first Fixer Upper restaurant (so far). You can read all about those plans on Joanna’s blog here; below is a photo of the property, pre-Demo Day:
Finally, it looks like at least one member of Joanna’s pre-Gaines family will appear on camera this season. She recently filmed a design segment with one of her sisters (and one tired-looking dog). It’s unclear whether the segment will appear on the Fixer Upper Season 5 episode list or on Behind The Design, Joanna’s forthcoming spinoff. The latter seems more likely, if only because it’s also likely to feature more of Joanna; if you’re a typical Fixer Upper fan, though, you’ll probably be watching both.
HGTV hasn’t yet announced the official premiere date for the fifth season. However, our team of crack investigators crunched the numbers and discovered that the network likes to debut new seasons of Fixer Upper on the first Tuesday after Thanksgiving, something they did back-to-back with Seasons 3 and 4. If that pattern holds, expect to see the Gainses back in action on November 28th.
(Photo credits: Fixer Upper Season 5 episode list via Instagram)