I’ve written about our dear pal Gael Towey before. Gael was the founding Creative Director of Martha Stewart Living, a magazine that revolutionized the way all kinds of making—from cooking to decorating to gardening and beyond—were seen in popular culture. I remember picking up what must have been one of the first issues of the magazine, and being both deeply impressed by it, and surprised by my own fascination. I didn’t think I was a reader of women’s magazines, which MSL clearly was—or was it?
I immediately became a faithful reader, devouring each issue. I learned so much, and in the process got myself over the sexist notion that you couldn’t be a career woman (how dated is that phrase?) at the same time as being a passionate knitter, grower, or homemaker. I could make motions for summary judgment for a living, and still care—deeply—about old table linens and Jane Gottelier sweaters. I know now that I owe this pivotal breakthrough in my life to Gael Towey, whose vision and genius for collaboration were at the heart of Martha Stewart Living and its many offshoot publications and businesses.
Gael recently appeared on the excellent podcast Print Is Dead. (Long Live Print!). In her interview, she crystallizes what Martha Stewart Living magazine was up to, and how it was so different from the “women’s magazines” that had come before, both in its content and in how that content was produced—collaboratively. There was something very deep going on, which has outlived the magazine and made its imprint on so many creative projects that followed. Gael described the mission of Martha Stewart Living as providing “inspiration and information” for millions of readers to live lives of greater creativity, beauty, and fulfillment. That’s exactly what we still crave: inspiration and information.
At the end of the interview, Gael is asked what kind of magazine she would make today, given an unlimited budget and no requirement to hit a specific circulation number. Her answer was so inspiring.
The Weekly Giveaway
Speaking of good things, this week’s prize is a newcomer to the MDK shop, the Flower Stitch Marker Sampler from Allstitch Studio.
How to enter?
Step 1: Sign up for MDK emails, right here. If you’re already signed up, you’re all set. There’s a new option for texting, so when you sign up for texts, you’ll get a coupon code good for 10% off your next MDK order.
Step 2: Leave a comment letting us know your favorite domestic pursuit that is not needlework related. Do you raise prize cherry tomatoes? Make coffee tables out of reclaimed pallets? What elevates your life?
Deadline for entries: Sunday, March 12, 11:59 PM Central time. A winner will be drawn at random and notified by email.