Chip Foose is one of those people who works hard and benefits from the results of skillful and devoted labor. Being an automobile designer and an artist, Chip had a chance to shift his career to a new level and to become a TV star of the reality television series “Overhaulin’” on Velocity’s network. Find out more information about Chip’s life, family, net worth and career ups and downs in this article.
Early life and family
Douglas Sam “Chip” Foose was born on 13 October 1963, in Santa Barbara, California USA. His father, Sam Foose, was an automobile general specialist and had his own company in Santa Barbara called “Project Design”. One couldn’t call that company a prosperous one in late ‘70s. Terry Loose, Sam’s wife and Chip’s mother, supported her husband as hard as she could. Terry was a passionate car enthusiast herself, and their similar interest in cars and design made them a close couple. They married on 2 December 1959, their union was a success, although there were times when Sam worked for 100 hours a week to earn enough money for his family to have a good life. He spent the days on repair work and the nights on his true passion, hot rods. Terry didn’t want the kids to miss their father so she brought them to Sam’s shop so they could have a family dinner together. The work was worth it, as Sam appeared in several hot-rod magazines with his custom creations, and people started talking about him.
Chip started working at his father’s firm when he was only seven years old. to help his family to deal with bills and debts, which he actually enjoyed; he was strongly inspired by the talents and success story of Alexander Sarantos Tremulis, an automobile designer who worked for the Ford Motor Company and Tucker Car Corporation – Preston Tucker’s company. Chip met him when he was a teenager, and intended to enter the Art Center College of Design. Chip accompanied his father to cars shows and hot-rod runs; whenever Chip liked a car he saw, he took his sketchbook and his colored pencils and drew it, sitting right on the ground in front of the car. People gathered around him to watch him drawing, and even paid seven or eight dollars to get their hot rod drawn by him.
When Chip was nine years old, Sam gave him a real treasure – a wrecked Volkswagen with which Chip was thrilled by the opportunity to do the whole work on his own, and spent all his spare time after school and on weekend to fix it, mesmerized by the magic of hammering out the dents and fixing the smashed metal. Sam was satisfied by his son’s work, and Chip was proud of himself, but to his shock Sam at once took the hammer and dropped it right on the fresh paint of the hood and asked Chip to fix it again. As his father told him later, that ‘was the best way to learn from mistakes’. Sam Foose died on 29 November 2018, leaving the family grieving. Chip officially announced that his father passed away on his Facebook and Instagram accounts.
Chip was very motivated to learn and study, and after high school, in 1982 he started attending Art Center College of Design where he studied there for two years but then had to quit due to financial difficulties, and went to work for Clenet Coachworks for four years to raise some money. Chip met his girlfriend and future wife Lynne during 1989, and she insisted on his returning to college since she told Chip she didn’t want to marry somebody without a college education. Chip subsequently graduated from Art Center College with honors, and then having 31 jobs offers to choose from.
In 1990 Chip started his fruitful co-operation with Boyd Coddington. While he was working full-time for Stehrenberger Design and only part-time for Boyd, he transitioned to fully switching to Boyd’s company. Eventually, Chip got the post of the president of “Hot Rods by Boyd”, a company which Coddington created for new fresh ideas in hot rods design. Chip had a chance to work on such famous projects as as the Boydster and Boydster II. While working on these creations, Chip improved several skills at once: designing, fabricating, painting and welding. People who work in the automobile industry admit that specialists in that field usually have one or two skills they are good at, whereas Chip was successful at develop all those specialities almost up to perfection.
Boyd Coddington was very enthusiastic about his company – “Boyd Wheels” – and hoped it would help “Hot Rods by Boyd” to overcome the difficulties they had, but it all turned out a failure and the company declared bankruptcy in 1998. The day Chip left the working place, Lynne told him she was pregnant, so Chip had no chance to wait for a better job opportunity, and worked for a couple of years from his garage in Orange along with Steve Greninger who also lost his job when the Boyd shop team disbanded. Both Steve and Chip dreamt of an opportunity to get all the members of that team, which they all called “the Magic Machine”, together again, as they understood they could do a lot of remarkable things.
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🐯 1974 @jaguar E-Type update – Work continues with a focused effort on the shape and fitment of the quarter panels, deck lid and surrounding area. Radiator shroud has also been fabricated. Chip has begun some foam work to get the shape for the front bumpers. They’ve been sent out to be de-chromed so that we can begin working on then. Battery tray fabricated and fitted. Rear sway bar also fabricated and mounted. @lincolnelectric @3mcollision @3mauto @3mfilms @magnaflow @hagertyclassiccars @mactools38 @arcaudio @basfrefinish #jaguar #jaguaretype #etype #jag #foose #chipfoose #foosedesign #metalwork #fabrication
In 2000 Chip sold his 0032 roadster which was bought by the Petersen Museum, and used the money to open his own company, Foose Design. Though Boyd lost all the people who he had to fire back in the day and couldn’t suggest them any job, Coddington was furious when Chip hired them for Foose Design. The feud lasted for a couple of years, but then Coddington let it go and commented the situation on his own TV show “American Hot Rod” on Discovery Channel: ‘Some things happen for the better’. The Foose Design was different from all other shops, since the idea of creation was above earning money, and Chip and his team’s dedication paid off with awards and honors they won. In 2002 Foose Design receivwed their first Ridler Award, and then repeated their success in 2003, 2005 and 2015.
TV shows and movies
In 2003 Foose Design attracted the attention of the TLC channel, and Chip made an appearance in a documentary about his modification of the Speedbird, and 2002 Ford Thunderbird. The documentary got a lot of positive reviews. and TLC looked forward to working with Chip again. Later he signed a contract for a show called “Overhaulin’” which had a huge success over four seasons. From 2008 the show had a break, and was relaunched on Velocity in 2012 and then ended its production in 2015 with nine seasons in total. The show had an amazingly warm feedback from the audience, and Chip’s site has an official disclaimer that they are not able to work with new submissions for the “Overhaulin” that keep on coming to Foose Design email. “Overhaulin’” episodes had a similar plot: there was a person with an old car who was tricked and thought his car was towed though the car was actually fixed and redesigned by Foose Design’ exclusive project, and the person got the brand new car not even expecting to get it back. Special guests in “Overhaulin’” were Johnny Depp and Amber Heard.
Foose Design cooperated with the Disney-Pixar movie “Cars” in 2006, with Chip and his team working on sketches and graphics for the movie and its sequel, “Cars 2” in 2011. “Cars 3” was released in 2017, and the movie also used some graphic works Foose Design earlier prepared for the franchise. Chip shared that job was special for him, a dream that came true: ‘We unleashed our creative juices, mixing new @basfrefinish paint colors and ultimately designing and painting 11 total hoods for the land <…>. Also had a hand in a number of other elements you see in the park. Truly a dream come true for me!’
Chip proposed to his girlfriend Lynne in 1991; later they married and had two children, Brock and Katie, but had hard times when Chip was too busy with his work so he couldn’t be at home as often as Lynne would want. So on Father’s Day in 2006, Lynne claimed she would divorce Chip if he didn’t change his working schedule in such a way so he could spend more time with the family. When Chip’s father was still alive, he advised Chip to slow down with his work projects, to spend more time with the kids, and Chip tried hard to cut more hours for family weekends, trips to Disneyland and picnics with hiking. Chip is serious about his parenting position – he is concerned about the changes education undergoes nowadays. ‘The biggest crime happening in America is the fact the they’ve pulled all these shop classes out of schools. Kids today, their dream isn’t to build something, it’s to buy something’, Chip shares his concerns. Chip tries to involve his son Brock in his work process, sharing the legacy the Fooses have been gaining for decades. Brock got it right and is very committed to his hobbies and interests. Earlier he had his own high school television channel “Foothill Television”, for which he filmed news blocks and discussed the news with his schoolmates.
Chip is a vice president in the California department of the Progeria Research Foundation. He has a very special attitude to Hutchinson-Gilford progeria syndrome (HGPS) since it took away his youngest sister in 1985when she was just a small child.
Chip has light-brown eyes and short fair hair. His height is 5ft 11ins (1.8m) and his weight is around 170lbs (78kgs).
As for early 2019, Chip Foose has accumulated an impressive net worth which is authoritatively estimated be around $18.5 million. Though the TV project “Overhaulin’” is out of production, Chip still has a lot of work to do, since the doors of his shop are always open for new customers and car lovers.