Joanna Gaines Revealed the First Time She Ever Used Shiplap

published Jul 13, 2021
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Credit: Courtesy Magnolia Home

Joanna Gaines helped shiplap become as trendy as it is today, making it the farmhouse chic detail that — for many years — every client on “Fixer Upper” needed to have in their homes. And while the material is part of the reason America fell in love with the renovating duo, some may be surprised that Gaines never meant for her name to be connected to it in the long run. 

In a recent roundtable discussion with Apartment Therapy, Gaines recounted the first time she ever used shiplap. “The world captured our journey on renovating this farmhouse in 2013; I had never done shiplap before — I’ve seen it in a lot of these older houses that we were renovating — but I never fully highlighted it until I saw it in the farm,” Gaines recalled. “It was authentic to the farm, [and we] painted it white. Once you put that coat of white paint, there is this fresh kind of take on something that’s old and rustic.” 

Viewers watched in amazement at the shiplap transformation — and then they wanted it. From there, it become the material that Gaines’ clients wanted more than anything, so she continued to use it (gotta give the people what they want!). And while Gaines did admit that she felt a bit “stuck” in the farmhouse trend, she did grow to love shiplap.

That love didn’t grow due to shiplap’s trendiness, but because of it being a strong, timeless material that can last, which she compares to another design trend: subway tile. “When it’s a material you can find from the 1800s, that’s an authentic material that can stand the test of time, just like subway tile, it’s something you’ve seen for years,” Gaines said. 

Nonetheless, it was a happy accident that Gaines became strongly associated with shiplap, and vice versa. But she hopes that others can see beyond her love for shiplap, too. “I think if you really know me and my styles, it’s ever-evolving, I try to change it up, so hopefully what people see in this new season [of “Fixer Upper: Welcome Home”] is different stuff,” Gaines mentioned. “But if they asked for shiplap, I gave it to them.”