Chip Gaines Admits He Felt 'Trapped' by the End of 'Fixer Upper'

The last two seasons of Fixer Upper may have been a ton of fun for fans, but they weren't great for Chip Gaines.

The HGTV star admitted that by the conclusion of the Fixer Upper, which ended in April after five seasons, he was ready to move on from his hit show in the January cover story for Cowboys & Indians magazine.

“TV was a funny thing for me. I’m an authentic, sincere person. So, as long as things are natural and organic, I’m in my element. But the more staged something becomes, or the more required something becomes, it boxes me up,” Gaines said. “I felt like toward the end of the Fixer Upper journey, I felt caged, trapped.”

He added that the feeling was mutual in regards to wife Joanna, explaining, "Jo and I couldn’t figure it out. I mean, why? You’re getting to have all this fun, right? But it’s like if I put a camera in your face and said, ‘Hey, say something funny.’ Or if I put a camera in your face and said, ‘Hey, be smart.’ I just struggled with that environment. Especially at the end of it."

That doesn't mean the couple didn't have a blast during their hit show.

“At the beginning, it was so fun. The first three years of Fixer Upper were some of the best years of my life,” Gaines continued. “The last two years, not that we don’t look back on them fondly, but they were more of a job. So, something about breaking out of that has been liberating.”

He added, “Jo and I are both just kinda giddy, just like, ‘Man, what’s the future look like and what’s the next step?’ Because we’re both business people, and that’s fundamentally who we are.”

The couple has since announced that they are creating their own TV channel with Discovery, explaining on The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon in November, “We are coming back to television. You are going to get to see the kids grow up, you are going to see us, well maybe a six-month delay like the rest of the world, but we are excited to be back.”

Closing out his cover article, Gaines teased at what is to come for the couple.


“I believe that the hard work that we put in to this show, to our relationship, our family, our business, that those things pay dividends, and it’s not always the very next day, but I think in the next decade you’ll look back and see all the fruits of your labor," he concluded.

Photo credit: Getty / Laura Cavanaugh