Martha Stewart: My Impressions of the Ultimate Perfectionist

Martha Stewart. Is there anyone else whose name so strongly conjures up a brand?

When you hear the name Martha Stewart, what do you think?

My own connection to Martha Stewart is complicated. Her bridal magazines were the sole material I connected with when planning my own affair. Those magazines were difficult to come by in London. I had to seek them out at my favorite newsstand in Notting Hill, and I needed to buy them early in the month: each issue usually sold out. The ideas and weddings featured were thoughtful, personal and often reinvented time-worn traditions in a way that seemed new, like bridal ribbon bouquet knots from the 40s remade in a minimalist, spare fashion. I was going to have a big wedding, but I wanted a classic, understated feel. Hence, Martha.

I am very proud of the way my wedding turned out: it was, dare I say it, perfect?

Of course, there’s the perfectionist side of Martha that we all know, too.

So I was curious what she would be like in person. And I eagerly awaited her BlogHer keynote.


Unexpectedly, she had a very dry sense of humor. She joked that when there were typos in her tweets, there was an inevitable response from followers wondering if Martha was “drunk, again.” Also, Martha’s tweets have typos in them? Wha?!

Also, this:

The Personal

Martha Stewart was wearing very high heels and sported some really cute coral jeans. It was her birthday (5,000 people struck up an impromptu serenade to her) and she didn’t look a day over 50. She got real with us, admitting that her own marriage couldn’t survive the balance of her work.

On Blogging

She said she looks to blogs for honest, diligent reporting and even asked us to share our blogs with her. She advised that letting the personal out leads to more community. She gets the most response to her personal revelations, like the time she live-tweeted her visit to the ER after her dog headbutted her. (She remembered the “awful wallpaper.”)

Advice for Living Well

The piece of advice she shared that I liked the best was this: “I’m terrible at things I haven’t tried.” There is an innate curiosity Martha Stewart has to living, and that is what I share with her. She relayed that her secret to success was pretty simple. “It’s really about keeping one’s curiosity and having a hard work ethic. I like to learn something new every day.” This is one of the best things about the blogosphere to me: I love learning about you all: where you live, what your life is like. I love trying new things, whether food or growing our new salad garden. And maybe that is a key to living well: remaining curious about the world and being willing to try new things, from technology to food to reading new blogs.

What say you? Does curiosity about life make your life better?


Filed under Blogging, Discovering joy

12 responses to “Martha Stewart: My Impressions of the Ultimate Perfectionist

  1. Esperanza

    I really appreciate this look into Martha Stewart. I have to admit, I don’t know much about her, there is little that she “sells” that I care much about (or have the time to care much about) as I’m not really into cooking or weddings (never had one myself) or home decor. But I am interested in her as a person, as a woman who built herself up into one of most impressive brands ever created (even those who aren’t all that interested in what she sells can appreciate the quality of it). I appreciate that she was so honest and straight forward in her speech, that she didn’t hide behind her huge empire but spoke as a woman to other women. I wish I had been there to see it myself! 😉

    • Thanks 🙂 What she has accomplished IS incredibly impressive. Another thing she said that was interesting was that only 4% of CEOs were women. I knew the number was low, but sheesh…

      Wish you had been there, too.

  2. I am one of the most curious people alive! My husband makes fun of my constant “need to know” everything. That last paragraph totally resonate with me! It makes me feel a little more normal 🙂

  3. I’m not a huge fan of what Martha sells because it is too inaccessible for me. Too perfect, too hard, just too much to me. However, I like her based on what she said at the conference. I agree with her about curiosity. It does make my life better. I’m always googling something or reading something new b/c I’m curious about a topic. I think curiosity makes me a better, more well-rounded person, and I’m surprised by those who lack curiosity. How can you not be curious?

  4. I have this long standing issue where I HATE doing anything I’m not instantly good at. I give up, and quit, and sometimes… I pout. It is not attractive. And is a character flaw I am fully aware of. I like her stance that she is terrible at things she hasn’t tried though. And being a little more curious could probably be good for all of us!

  5. I have a love-hate relationship with Martha… I remember watching her show when it first started & was on just once a week, on Sunday mornings — a weekly treat — and I think I still have the very first issue of her magazine in the basement somewhere. I alternate between loving all the stuff she does & shows in her magazine & on TV, wishing that my house/closet/kitchen/garden/whatever looked just like that… and yelling at the screen, “Martha!! Who the hell has the TIME??!” lol I guess what I like is the idea that somebody has the time to do (& think of) all this stuff, even I only have time to look at it briefly. And I agree about curiosity. Dh tells me that I don’t have to know everything, that I can throw out some magazines unread — but I’m always afraid I’m going to miss something important, or really good. ; )

    • This is totally unverified and basically gossip, but someone told me at BlogHer that Martha Stewart sleeps three hours a night 😉 If that’s true, it explains how she has the time!

  6. What a great summary about what you learned from hearing Martha speak at BlogHer`12! I didn’t expect her humor and love that quote that you shared and tweeted. I had mixed feelings about Martha going into the keynote, but definitely appreciated what she had to say and shared with all of us. She is certainly an impressive woman on many levels.

    I do think that curiosity about life makes my life better.

    Also, I LOVE the picture from your wedding day! You look gorgeous and Mr. Darcy so handsome.

  7. Definitely! I think trying new things makes life more exciting. Over the past couple years I have really gotten into trying new things, I used to be scared to, and now I really enjoy it. Sometimes things don’t work out, but at least I can say I tried. When things do work out it makes me feel great!

    I love your wedding pic! So beautiful!

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