Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Martha Stewart gets a second chance to be an icon

One theme of the upcoming Mistake Bank book is that we are offered second chances if we make a mistake. This is illustrated in a recent New York Times article portraying Martha Stewart as a newly-minted icon of craftspeople and artisans. Here's an excerpt:

In and around the Williamsburg neighborhood of Brooklyn, Martha Stewart has spawned meet-up groups for people who want to work on crafting, blog items about her sighting at the Brooklyn Bowl rock club, sales of her books at the Brooklyn Kitchen cook shop and decorative displays in the shop window of Urban Rustic, a market and cafe.

Beyond Williamsburg, Ms. Stewart has drawn crafting and baking fans from Saratoga Springs to San Francisco who have made MarthaStewart.com the most-shared site among its rivals on the social site Pinterest, according to Pinfluencer.

While some Martha Stewart fans abandoned their magazine subscriptions and Ms. Stewart’s high-thread-count sheets after she went to prison over her 2004 conviction for lying to federal investigators about a stock sale, this new generation of fans say her prison time only gives her more street credibility.

“She’s such a Suzy homemaker and also did some time in the joint,” said Luis Illades, an owner of Urban Rustic, where some of Ms. Stewart’s store-bought decorations appeared.

“That has helped cement her iconic image. Before, she was someone your mother would follow.”

Crystal Sloane, 29, who grew up on a dairy farm outside Saratoga Springs, N.Y., reading her mother’s issues of Martha Stewart Living, has begun her own business called Vintage by Crystal, designing miniature animals that Ms. Stewart eventually featured on “The Martha Stewart Show.”

“She’s like the Jesus of the craft world,” she said.

“Not that I like criminals, but I heard that she just took some bad advice. Anybody can make mistakes.”

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