Chip and Joanna Gaines' Magnolia cable network delayed till January, but their own streaming app is on the way

Erin Jensen

The full slate of Chip and Joanna Gaines' Magnolia content will now sprout on the Discovery+ streaming platform and an app, ahead of their long-planned cable network, now due in January.

The Discovery-owned Magnolia network, which USA TODAY exclusively revealed would replace Discovery's DIY, was originally slated for a summer 2020 launch, then pushed to October, and is now delayed further because of the COVID-19 pandemic. 

Now, as with many media companies, streaming will be the primary home for new content. "The cart and the horse have definitely been reversed," Chip told TV critics Thursday.

New streaming app Discovery+ will expand a preview of Magnolia Network on July 15, when a stand-alone Magnolia app also will launch, free to Discovery+ subscribers, that includes "exclusive workshops, an easy-to-use shopping experience and more." Discovery+ costs about $5 a month, or $7 for an ad-free version.

The Gaineses rose to fame as the stars of the HGTV series, "Fixer Upper." The show signed off in 2018 after five seasons, but the Waco, Texas, residents announced a revival would be a part of Magnolia Network's line-up in August. "Fixer Upper: Welcome Home" premiered on Discovery+ Jan. 29. 

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Thursday, Chip told reporters at a Discovery+ Television Critics Association panel that the transition to a streaming platform, where content is often dumped in full and can be consumed quickly, has been an adjustment. He says he and Jo would devote a calendar year of their life to "Fixer Upper," producing a season's worth of episodes distributed to audiences weekly.

"When you’re in television, reality television specifically, you’re trading a year of your life for essentially 13 to 18 episodes," Chip Gaines says. "You’d get on the other side of that and go, 'All right, let’s do that again.’

"With streaming, you can consume 13-18 episodes in a night!" he says in comparison. "Now when somebody calls me and says, ‘Hey, I binge-watched your entire season last night from 8 p.m. to 2 in the morning, and you’re sitting there going, ‘My entire year got that person one night of information?’… That for me has been probably the toughest part of this challenge is it feels like an unquenchable amount of content that you have to provide that machine. And we’re trying to figure out what’s the right balance.” 

Joanna explained  theworkshops, which aim to put the audience's DIY desires in motion.

“What’s always been important for us at Magnolia is giving people the tools, the next steps to be able to say, ‘Hey, I’m inspired by that, but now I want to go do it,’" she says. "And so the workshops (are) going to be that tangible tool where we’re gonna have people who really know their trade – whether that’s design, cooking, painting – so that if you’re wanting to deep dive into some of these topics or subjects and learn more about it, you can almost be taught by the experts.

"Our hope with the workshops is that it feels a little bit more hands on," she adds, "that it goes from this aspirational thing to now this learning experience and really helps you take that next step.”

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