It was one Sunday afternoon back in 2013 when I was going through quite a few video-on-demand shows on HGTV. I came across a soon-to-be released TV show called Fixer Upper. Interestingly enough, the video-on-demand had a few episodes already available, so I watched one episode, watched another one, and not long after, we’ve become fans of Joanna and Chip Gaines, stars of HGTV’s Fixer Upper.
To those who don’t know much about the show, Joanna and Chip are like the house whisperers. They have a way of finding a diamond in the rough and seeing all the potentials. A classic episode simply goes like this:
- a day in the life of Chip and Jojo (as Chip would affectionately call her)
- you’d see their beautiful kids
- a couple or a family looking for a new home
- Chip and Jojo take them to 3 different choices, helping them envision what it could be
- the buyer picks a home
- demo day, and all the work begins
- Joanna gives them options for additional improvements
- more construction work
- visiting Clint at Harp Design for some creative wood work and other surprises
- last minute touches, Joanna’s favorite moment when she’s alone and adding little charm here and there
- the moment of the big reveal with the huge poster sized picture of the old home in the foreground
- finally, the walk through
Yes, you can say, we’ve watched one too many episodes of Fixer Upper. As they became more popular over the years, there were talks of them buying this area in Waco with these 2 huge 120 ft. high silos. I later learned that folks could visit, and buy different things for home decor. I’ve seen many of my friends visit this area in Waco, and I just knew that we’d be visiting Waco one day…someday.
Visiting Austin with a detour in Waco
We had a wellness getaway visit planned in Austin, and we decided to change our itinerary a bit and decided to include a visit to Waco. It served as a perfect opportunity to include this on our visit to Austin.
It was a drive that took 1.5 hours from our hotel in Austin. No major traffic when we left Austin around 7:30am. Nancy was prepared, reviewed her list of places to visit. Just shortly after 9am, we made it to Waco. First stop, Magnolia Table.
1. Magnolia Table
Nancy was in charge of the itinerary. I was just there to follow along the route. She did read that it was best to eat first and then shop later. Magnolia Table is a restaurant that was renovated by Joanna and Chip Gaines. It was everything we imagined it would be. Down home comfort food, nothing flashy. It was a brightly lit-restaurant, a perfect way to get our day started with some good, comfort food.
It’s all in the details and the way the staff attended to our needs. As long as my coffee cup gets its refill, consider me happy. I asked another refill once more towards the end of our meal. I thought to myself “wouldn’t it be nice to have some coffee when we leave the restaurant?” and to my surprise, our server came back with my coffee in a to-go cup, I didn’t even have to ask.
That was a great start to our morning. We also visited their little Take Away section which also had lots of souvenir items for sale.
Finally, we made it – Magnolia at the Silos
After leaving Magnolia Table, we made our way towards Magnolia Market at the Silos. We had no idea what to expect, and the moment we drove up, we could already sense that we’d be around the area for awhile.
2. Silos Bakery
First stop, Silos Bakery. Lots of social distancing practice was in place. There was a short line (this was around 11am on a Thursday morning. Once we got in to the bakery, we ordered two cupcakes – Strawberries and Creme, and Lemon Lavander Cupcakes, recommended by the gracious server.
There were a few tables outside, a perfect place to rest, or eat and take pictures. I personally enjoyed the Strawberries and Creme. But both were equally moist and delicious.
3. Magnolia Market
Directly next to the bakery is Magnolia Market. This place was huge. It consisted of just everything imaginable that you’d think Joanna Gaines would use to decorate a home. Knowing that we were traveling, we didn’t buy anything huge. It was just great to walk around this building. We purchased a mug and a postcard, the lady at the register realized we were only in town for a visit, and gave us a Magnolia Passport – a discount booklet to their Little Shop of Bosque (see below).
4. Magnolia Home
As we walked closer to Magnolia Home, a building which was a few minutes walk away from Magnolia Market, I asked myself, what could possibly be different with this compared to Magnolia Market? Well, Magnolia Home was more focused on furniture. Think of a huge warehouse of living room, dining room, bedroom, etc….but with a touch of Joanna Gaines’s vision – that’s what you get at Magnolia Home.
5. Magnolia Press
Next to Magnolia Home was Magnolia Press, a place where you can stop and smell the coffee, have pastries, have a little cup of tea. Unlike Silos Bakery, Magnolia Press had a bigger indoor space for seating, and a great outdoor space as well.
We didn’t get to take pictures inside anymore since we already had a big breakfast and had cupcakes at the bakery.
6. Little Shop on Bosque
What is it? It’s not onsite with Magnolia Market. It was about a 15-minute drive, a drive that allowed us to see Waco – this little shop was our kind of store….slightly damaged, or older items, last-chance for great discounts. The T-shirts that I wanted from Magnolia Market that I didn’t buy, well, I was glad i didn’t. They were nearly $30 each – but great quality though. Over at Little Shop on Bosque, there were lots of shirts for men and women that we were able to get for around $6 each. Oh and the passport gift from Magnolia Market got us another 10% off at this quaint little shop and we also a free souvenir pin.
7. Harp Design Co.
This visit would not be complete without stopping at Harp Design Co. It’s quite common to see Joanna visit her friend, Clint, owner of Harp Design Co. She gives him an idea, her vision of something unique to build, she would draw something up, and Clint would just know how to turn her vision to reality. His shop is just one big space filled with lots of trinkets available for purchase.
8. Visiting a few Fixer Upper Homes
We had already spent a some 5-6 hours visiting and we just had to make sure we saw a few Fixer Upper Homes. Here are the ones that we visited.
9. Noteworthy stops
A few other places where we visited outside of anything related to Magnolia that’s worth checking out.
- Cajun Craft-we grabbed our quick late lunch special of Cajun Shrimp, Fries, and Hush puppies for $9
- Dr. Pepper Museum – we got here quite late and didn’t get to tour the museum, but had one delicious root beer float
- Torchy’s Tacos – not far from Magnolia at the Silos, known to be Chip’s favorite place to grab something quick to eat, we had a couple of their tacos just before we headed back to Austin.
That was it…our whole day in Waco. It was a long, tiring, but fulfilling, very fulfilled to have seen the great things from this show, and to finally see Waco up close. I hope you enjoyed our little tour of Magnolia at the Silos.