The castle that Chip and Joanna bought for the Fixer Upper: The Castle series was modelled after a small German castle, and they retained this vintage style throughout.
The Cottonland Castle was the biggest renovation project that Chip and Joanna had attempted to take on to date.
Fortunately, after a lot of hard work and clever planning, Chip and Joanna managed to retain many of the vintage German-inspired elements of this Fixer Upper castle intact throughout their renovations. They gave give the castle an updated, vintage style in the end.
About Fixer Upper: The Castle
Chip and Joanna Gaines are no strangers to renovating unique properties, with several commercial properties and even the Waco Silos already under their belts.
However, the couple’s 2019 journey to restore the century-old Cottonland Castle may be their most ambitious project to date.
The castle’s foundations were laid back in 1890 and it stood out to Chip as the perfect special project for the Gainses to tackle in their hometown of Waco, Texas.
What is the style of the Fixer Upper castle?
Through the years, the Cottonland Castle had proved to be a difficult design project. So difficult, in fact, that it changed ownership several times before it was completed in 1915.
By the time that Chip and Joanna got their hands on the castle in 2019, it was mostly the worse for wear, with cracks in the masonry, rotting floorboards, and an overgrown yard.
The Fixer Upper castle was originally modelled after a small German castle along the Rhine River, and it had the sandstone and limestone exterior to match, with French Caen stone, Italian Carrara marble, and Honduran mahogany panelling on the interior.
Chip and Joanna decided at the beginning of the project that they would try to keep as many of the original, vintage 1900s details as they could for their final design.
Although this did make their renovation project more challenging, it helped to preserve the character of the castle in the end.
Throughout the entire renovation, Chip and Joanna managed to blend old with new, by combining several really old, found pieces that came with the house.
This includes a poem by Alfred Abeel (a previous owner) with sneaky modern features which were cleverly staged to look older than they actually are.
Not to mention the fact that Joanna carefully sourced vintage items, including a dining room table and chairs, to match the style of the house in order to ensure that everything blended seamlessly.
Did Chip and Joanna change the exterior façade of the castle?
Chip and Joanna were forced to replace some of the old sandstone on the exterior of the castle and they had to decide whether they would treat the old stone to make it match the new materials or age the new material with a technique called composting.
In the end, Chip decided to do the chemical treatment on the old stone. This, along with the restored original front door and dark painted windows, new outside hanging lights, and new landscaping, gave the exterior of the castle a fresher, but true-to-the-original look.
Does the castle still have its original floors?
The indoor flooring inside the castle ended up having a similar problem to that of the outside of the home. Although Chip and Joanna tried their best to keep the original flooring where they could, some spots were simply too damaged to keep.
Fortunately, Joanna managed to retain the same vintage style in the castle by replacing the worn-down wooden planks with reclaimed antique planks from the same era instead.
Joanna even sourced antique checkerboard flooring from a château in France for the conservatory, which the couple built from scratch for the castle.
The final reveal
By the time that Chip and Joanna finished with their renovation project, they had completely revived all 4300 square feet of their castle. Furthermore, each of the four bedrooms had their own, distinct personality and story.
In the foyer, Joanna and Chip managed to keep the original millwork, wall panelling, and the front door, to really emphasise the vintage style of the home as you walk in through the front door.
From there, the light-grey drawing room and a modern Magnolia velvet couch in the bay window gives the house that homey feeling and mood.
The dining room and kitchen are the rooms in the house with the most original features, including the original Abeel family crest, the original wood panelling, and the hutch in the kitchen.
Still, even these rooms have additional modern conveniences like new cabinets and added storage in the butler’s pantry. The bathrooms throughout the castle were updated with patterned tiles and gold fixtures.