Before and After: “Fixer Upper” Reinvented a Cramped Layout to Comfortably Sleep 16 People

updated Mar 3, 2021
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The final renovation in this season of “Fixer Upper: Welcome Home” is on a scale unlike any other. Jenny, a friend of Joanna Gaines’ sister, reached out to see if there was any interest in bringing new life and inspiration into a shelter for young girls, and Chip and Jo were honored to take on the project to make a temporary situation for 16 girls feel more like a home.

In the beginning of the episode, Chip and Jo meet Barbara and Trasha, two of the staff members who helped run the shelter. They showed the Gaines around the 3,900-square-foot building, complete with seven bedrooms and six baths (three of them half). While there was a decent amount of space, the layout made the spaces feel tight and isolated. Barbara and Trasha wanted to create a flow between rooms that felt communal, and so Chip and Jo got to work knocking down walls and redesigning.

Upon entering the house, a large wall spanned the left side that contained one of the activity rooms — where the girls did homework, art projects, and other hobbies. Chip and Jo knocked down the majority of that wall and created an open entryway, revamping the room where the girls could express themselves and get creative.

They added a reading nook bordered by a multi-shelved unit filled with activities and games. A modern white table and withered oak table with blush chairs added more workspace options to the room to comfortably fit more people. Inspirational quote art spelling out “Your Story Matters” was splashed across one of the walls, and tin tiles painted white covered the ceiling, spilling into the front room.

Prior to the renovation, the main living area was quite bare and only had a dark L-shaped sectional that starkly contrasted the yellow walls. One issue that Trasha expressed about this room is that she was unable to see the girls in the room to the left, so Jo had the great idea of building a metal window into the wall to open it up while still having definition between the two rooms.

As far as the interior design, Jo wanted to bring warmth into the space. Alongside Chip, she painted all the walls white, added lighter floors, and brought in leather and rattan pieces of furniture that were durable but also stylish. Additionally, Jo added wallpaper depicting large wildflowers seen in the lefthand corner (and in the photo of the activity room above), which symbolized the resilience of the girls and that they can grow anywhere.

Perhaps the most challenging part of the renovation were the bedrooms, especially the two that slept four girls in each. It was important to Chip and Jo to make each girl feel like they had their own space, so they paired each bed with a nightstand where personal items could be kept and wall space where art could be hung.

Jo brought in her team of designers, too, to create the colored wall shapes to make the bedrooms feel personalized and special. Not to mention the quote art spelling out “there is gold in every piece of your story” in, of course, gold letters.

To see the full reveal, check out the episode on Discovery+. And if you’re craving the look of one (or all) of these rooms, head over to the Magnolia Blog for product recommendations. And since this is the seasonal finale of “Fixer Upper: Welcome Home,” here’s to hoping there’s a season two filled with beautiful renovations in the near future.