Monthly Archives: August 2012

Style Intervention: Martha Cleans Up a Frat House (Video)

This hilarious video has been around since 2010, but I’m sharing it here in case you haven’t seen it. In it, Martha agrees to clean up a frat house and introduces the young men to the Martha Stewart Collection at Macy’s. FOMs: Wouldn’t you love to see a “Martha’s Makeover” show like this on television?
Click on the image above to watch the video. Enjoy!

 

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Martha on the Today Show, August 20, 2012

Martha stopped by NBC’s Today Show this morning for a demo on swirled desserts, or “Desserts with a Twist”. Recipes are featured in the August issue of “Martha Stewart Living” magazine, and are also available here. Note how Martha uses items from the Martha Stewart Collection at Macys, demonstrating her commitment to that relationship, even while the legal skirmish continues to work itself out in court. FOMs: Have you ever made a jelly roll, or a meringue, like those shown here? Now’s your chance!

From The Today Show’s website:

“Give it a swirl! Whether cake, cookie or even ice cream, dessert instantly looks more impressive when it does the twist,” says kitchen maven Martha Stewart. Follow her lead and make your own “swirl” cake by using her simple techniques. Here, Martha prepares a chocolate peanut butter tart, coffee meringue-ice cream cake, hazelnut-raspberry jelly roll and cherry gelee.

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Preview Video of “Martha Stewart’s Cooking School” on PBS!

At last–a sneak peek! Click on the image above for a preview video! Check your local listings to see what time the show will be on in your area. FOMs: Can’t wait for October 6, right?

From PBS’ YouTube channel:

Martha Stewart conducts a culinary master class for American home cooks each week. The teaching series, inspired by her best-selling book Martha Stewart’s Cooking School: Lessons and Recipes for the Home Cook, debuts in October on PBS stations. In each 30-minute episode, Martha demonstrates classic cooking techniques and basics. Using her signature step-by-step, how-to teaching process, she illustrates the building blocks of recipes everyone should know (from roasting to poaching to braising and blanching).

via Martha Stewart’s Cooking School | Preview | PBS – YouTube.

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Martha’s Next Book to be Published on May 7, 2013

Martha’s next book, “Living the Good Long Life: A Practical Guide to Caring for Yourself and Others”, now has an expected publication date of May 7, 2013. Originally, the book was to be released on January 29, 2013. Already, you can preorder the book on Amazon! (Remember, if you preorder on Amazon, you will receive the book on the date it is published–no waiting necessary!) At 400 pages long, the book promises to be a comprehensive guide to health and well-being.

According to Martha herself, from her blog:

“What my ‘Homekeeping Handbook’ did for every aspect of keeping house, ‘Living the Good Long Life’ does for living the most healthy life after 40. In this book, I impart my expertise in my signature topics – eating, exercise, intellect, home, and organizing. It’s really the definitive handbook on staying well physically and mentally into and beyond middle age. This book is important because over the next 20 years, the US population of baby boomers aged 65 and up will jump nearly 80 percent to 1 in every 5 Americans. There’s a tremendous need for clear and inspiring information, tools, and resources as more people and their families face the challenges and responsibility of getting older and caring for one who is aging.”

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Martha vs. Macy’s: Martha Fights Back, Seeks Appeal

Do NOT mess with Martha! MSLO has filed an appeal to the judge’s preliminary injunction, claiming there was an “erroneous interpretation” of the agreement with Macy’s, and that there was also “an incorrect application of the legal standards for a preliminary injunction”–basically, that there can be no damages, as no products have been sold at J.C. Penney.

Further, MSLO claims that, notwithstanding the new partnership with J.C. Penney, MSLO has continued to work diligently with Macy’s in “good faith” and pointed to good sales figures for the Martha Stewart Collection items as evidence that there have been no damages.

It is interesting to note that when Macy’s signed their contract with MSLO in 2005, they didn’t seem to have a problem with the fact that Martha’s contract with Kmart ran through January 2010. For a time, Martha Stewart items were available in both stores, and were profitable ventures for both companies. FOMs: Wouldn’t you love to see Martha’s products for sale at both Macy’s AND J.C. Penney? Now, THAT would be a good thing!

From Businessweek.com:

Martha Stewart Living argued in the court documents filed today that sales under the J.C. Penney agreement aren’t slated to start until March and Macy’s hasn’t shown it’s being harmed by preparations.

“The record in fact shows that since the announcement of the JCP agreement, MSLO has continued to work in good faith with MMG, sales of Martha Stewart collection items at Macy’s have not declined, and overall Macy’s sales have increased considerably,” lawyers for Martha Stewart Living said in the court documents.

via Martha Stewart Living Seeks to Appeal Macy’s Suit Ruling – Businessweek.

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Martha vs. Macy’s: MSLO Earnings Call Transcript

On July 30, there was a telephone discussion of MSLO’s second-quarter earnings. On the call from MSLO were Lisa Gersh (President and CEO, shown above), Kenneth West (Chief Financial Officer), and Katherine Nash (VP Communications and Investor Relations). This was the first quarterly earnings report since the preliminary injunction issued by the judge in the ongoing Martha vs. Macy’s dispute.

Two things to note from this call, relating to Martha vs. Macy’s:

1. The ruling has no virtually no impact on the introduction of Martha’s items in J.C. Penney stores in March 2013. hooray! What will likely be impacted, however, is the manner in which the products are branded.

2. The judge’s ruling was a preliminary injunction, and not a final ruling. As Gersh explains, “When a court issues a preliminary injunction, the parties are generally directed to settle an order which would then very specifically detail the terms of the order which has not happened yet. We expect that to happen shortly.” So, it sounds as if there can still be a reconciling of interests, where Martha and Macy’s can both be satisfied.

My own thoughts: I wonder if the Martha By Mail brand, already in existence long before Martha’s agreement with Macy’s, is covered by the Martha-Macy’s contract? It would not be unheard of for Martha to protect her existing intellectual property when entering into new contracts, and the Martha By Mail brand already had a well-established prior use. We already know, from earlier reports, that the online component of the Martha- J.C. Penney partnership will be huge. We also know that the Martha By Mail brand was much-loved by the public. (The catalog effort, however, was plagued by distribution and fulfillment issues. The poor performance of some partners was starting to reflect poorly on the Martha Stewart name, so the catalog was shuttered.) Obviously, J.C. Penney already has a catalog infrastructure in place–including distribution and fulfillment–so it would be relatively easy to relaunch the Martha By Mail effort and tap those resources. Importantly, the agreement with Macy’s (which runs through January 2018) would be honored, as they would continue as the sole retailer offering products with the entire “Martha Stewart” name–as the brand name “Martha By Mail” does not contain Martha’s last name. FOMs: Wouldn’t you love to see the return of Martha By Mail?

You can read the entire transcript of the Q2 earnings presentation, as well as the questions and answers that followed, at Seeking Alpha. Note: registration is free!

From Seeking Alpha:

Lisa Gersh:

“First, MSLO will be launching our products both in-store and online with J.C. Penney in the first quarter of 2013 as planned. Nothing about this ruling changes that. This case is primarily a contract dispute over how certain products are branded and sold, not about the validity of the partnership with J.C. Penney.

Second, the minimum guarantee under the J.C. Penney commercial agreement including the increase we just announced is not directly affected by the ruling. We are planning to be in J.C. Penney stores with a wide array of products for consumers early next year. And we are in ongoing development of categories and products as we typically are with all of our partners.”

via Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia’s CEO Discusses Q2 2012 Results – Earnings Call Transcript – Seeking Alpha.

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Happy Birthday, Martha!

A birthday toast to you and your endless curiosity, your passion for learning, and your generosity in sharing your knowledge with others. You have truly made the world a better and more beautiful place. On behalf of all FOMs, I thank you. Here’s to a fantastic year ahead–new ventures, new partnerships, and new ideas. Look out world, the best is yet to come!

FOMs: If Martha has inspired you to create something beautiful in your life, and you would like to celebrate Martha’s birthday, I encourage you to visit marthastewart.com. Choose from there a recipe, a craft, or any project to complete in the next seven days. I’m certain that nothing would make Martha happier than to know something beautiful was created in honor of her birthday. FOMs: If you send me a photo of your project, I will share it here with others.

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