The Witching Hour by Martha Stewart Crafts

The Witching Hour will soon be upon us! It is just over two months away! Martha Stewart Crafts has already begun to cast its spell with a series of new Halloween craft items coming to Michael's and select craft stores soon. Below is a preview of some of the new items (featuring a new Martha Stewart logo, as well) that were spotted at brutusmonroe.com. Click the link to find out more.
Give your guests a spooky welcome with this Halloween garland from the Martha Stewart Crafts Witching Hour collection. Each black, white & orange garland features nine, 4.25-inch chipboard die-cuts that feature witches, bats, spiders and mini LED lights.
  • Halloween garland measures 110 inches in total length
  • Uses CR2032 batteries
  • Batteries included
Looking for an alternative to carving? These gemstone stickers from the Martha Stewart Crafts Witching Hour collection are comprised of faceted, black gemstones that pop against orange pumpkins. Each stone also features an AB finish that gives each shape a lustrous shine. Each shape measures 5.5 inches in width. The Lenticular stickers, shown upper left, are little cameos of creepiness! Use them to embellish stationery, such as invitations to a Halloween party.
Who doesn't love washi tape? Add a spooky trim to your paper crafts this fall with this Halloween washi tape in assorted styles from the Martha Stewart Crafts Witching Hour collection. Each set includes 8 rolls of decorative Halloween washi tape in different styles and patterns that will make all of your fall crafts pop. 


Martha Stewart's Wall Manager System

Martha and her team have been busy redesigning their Office line, available exclusively at Staples stores in the United States and online at staples.com. New products have been introduced (including a new line of totes and bags) and previously-sold items have been redesigned and upgraded, such as the bestselling Martha Stewart Wall Manager System.

Today, Martha and her colleague Kevin Sharkey demonstrated much of the line during a Facebook Live video. You can watch that below. Also below is a description of the new wall manager system and how it works. I love how streamlined it looks. I also love its versatility. Sadly, this line will not be available in Canadian Staples stores.
Using horizontal rail sets in three sizes – small, medium, and large – the Wall Manager System allows you to hang writing panels, file holders, shelves, and more in one interconnected unit. All of the busiest rooms in the house can benefit from the system: the kitchen, entrance halls, bedrooms and, of course, the home office. (Take the system to work, too, to enhance your office organization system).

Step 1: Define Your Space

The first consideration is how much wall space you have to work with. Does your home have a dedicated office, or are you looking to better utilize the end of the kitchen counter top? The Wall Manager System can be built with three sizes of rails to fit your space. Make sure you’ll have enough clearance on both sides to slide accessories, such as reversible chalkboard-corkboard panels, onto the rails and space underneath the bottom rail to mount accessories, like a pencil cup, that hang lower.

Tip: All accessories are designed to a width that fits the small rail set. The medium rail set is double the width of the small, and the large rail set is triple the width.

Step 2: Identify Your Needs

Next, think about what your needs are and how this organizer can help. Will it be mounted above your dorm room desk to keep track of class assignments, in the kitchen to schedule family activities and sort mail, or in the home office to file presentations and meeting notes? Tailor the accessories to your organization goal. The hanging file sorter can hold papers, folders, and mail, while the panels are reversible—from corkboard to dry erase and corkboard to chalkboard—to write and pin notes.

Tip: If you have the space, consider installing the medium or large rails. This will allow you to add new accessories to the Wall Manager® System as your needs change.

Step 3: Fill Your Cart

Now it’s decision time: choose your rail size and accessories to create a cohesive organization system. You won’t lose your phone under a pile of papers with the hanging smart phone holder. The platform has an opening specially designed to fit a charging cable, plus it can hold a tablet with up to a 7-inch screen. And for stationery lovers, the hanging shelf has compartments for sticky notes, paper clips, and other small office supplies.

Tip: Martha Stewart Dry Erase Markers and Liquid Chalk Markers can be used on the dry erase and chalkboard panels.

Step 4: Assemble and Organize

Hanging the Wall Manager System is made easy with step-by-step instructions included in the rail set packaging. An installation template with markings for drill holes can be placed directly on the wall to guide you in positioning and mounting the rails. Even better, wall anchors and screws are also provided. Once the rails are secured in place, slide on your accessories to create a clutter-free zone.

Tip: It’s best to hang the system at eye level; that way you can easily write a grocery list on the chalkboard and grab outgoing mail from the file folders.

VIDEO: In this Facebook Live video, Martha Stewart and Kevin Sharkey demonstrate the new Wall Manager System and preview of the new Martha Stewart products at Staples:


The September Issue

The September issue of Martha Stewart Living is on newsstands now! Traditionally the "home" issue, September always has lots of helpful homekeeping tips and style ideas to get you organized and inspired for the busy season ahead. In this issue we learn how Martha selects and plants all her tulip bulbs for next spring, how to solve some pesky laundry quandaries and how to use up leftover rice in some truly inspiring and innovative recipes. In the well of the magazine, I was pleased to see the return of Fritz Karch who produced a beautiful story on collecting artificial fruit, from wood to glass to ceramic. We get a glimpse into the busy but inspired life of Jennifer Aaronson, a former food editor at Martha Stewart Living who is now overseeing the Martha & Marley Spoon venture. We learn how she juggles being a wife and mother while simultaneously co-running two businesses! And there is a great article on how to raise your home's IQ with safety suggestions, organizing ideas and style tips.
On the cover is a photo of some inexpensive shelves that have been enhanced with simple DIY upgrades to give them more style punch. Open the cover and you'll see an alternate version with some of the cubbies exposed (inset).


Happy Birthday, Martha!

Martha is celebrating her 76th birthday today at Skylands with friends and family. On behalf of the Martha Moments community of readers and supporters, I want to extend my warmest wishes to you, Martha! I hope you're having a wonderful day full of activity, surrounded by gorgeous scenery and grateful friends. Happy Birthday!


Test Kitchen: Pistachio Cannoli Cake from the May Issue

A few months ago, I asked members of the Martha Moments Facebook group if anyone was thinking of making any of the cakes from the May issue of Martha Stewart Living. I was so impressed by the feature in that issue ("Cakes for Any Occasion") that I was hoping someone from the group would be interested in sharing the process of making one of them.

Bernie Wong, a longtime reader of Martha Moments and fan of the Martha Stewart brand, recently took on the challenge. The occasion was a special meeting with a fellow Martha Moments member, Dennis Landon. Below are Bernie's photos of the process with some of his notes.

I'm hoping to regularly feature some readers here who take on some of the recipes in the magazine in a new series I'll call "Test Kitchen." If you are interested in taking part, just email me.

Active time: 35 minutes
Total Time: 4 hrs. 10 minutes
Serves: 10 to 16
Find the recipe by clicking here.

The magazine describes this cake as an "Italian pastry-inspired treat." The batter is flavoured with orange-flower water and crushed pistachios and the ricotta filling is laced with candied orange and semisweet chocolate.
Mise en place: "put in place". It's always a good idea to assemble all of the measured ingredients before you begin baking so that you can simply add them as you go without pause. Bernie does this every time!
The candied orange and the semisweet chocolate are finely chopped. This will be added to the filling.
A half a cup, plus three tablespoons, of shelled, unsalted pistachios are finely ground in a food processor. this gives the cake a bit of crunch and a faint green tint.
Bernie says the cakes came out perfectly and that the batter tasted delicious. He cut each cake in half, horizontally, to create the layers.
The filling was runnier than Bernie expected it to be, even after it chilled for a couple of hours, but it tasted wonderful and was still fine to use.
Ta da! Here is the finished cake, displayed on a Martha Stewart jadeite-green cake stand, of course. Bernie says he needed more crushed pistachios than the 1/4 cup the recipe called for to cover the sides of the cake. He says the process of covering the sides of the cake with the melted chocolate and then coating them with the crushed pistachios was quite challenging, but it still came out looking nice.
Bernie used his Martha Stewart Wedgwood plates for the dinner and created a lovely centerpiece of potted ferns and cut flowers from his garden.
Overall, a very delicious cake that was fun to make for a new friend!


Martha Coming to QVC in August

Martha Stewart will be debuting on QVC in August with a selection of home, food & beverage, beauty and apparel products that all bear her signature style and her personal stamp of approval! Martha will make frequent appearances on QVC to discuss her products and she has selected a team of brand ambassadors and "favourite experts" who will help her along the way. Be sure to stay tuned to QVC and qvc.com for updates about the launch and product details!
“Our brand has always been devoted to teaching and inspiring people to live more beautiful, more functional and more meaningful lives and our products provide solutions to do just that,” Martha Stewart said in a press release. “I am thrilled to partner with QVC, which offers unique opportunities to engage directly with an even broader audience, bringing to life several new categories for the Martha brand including beauty and fashion.”


Martha to Host Four Food & Wine Events with USA Today

Martha Stewart (Sequential Brands) and USA Today (Gannett Inc.) will be joining forces to host a series of food and wine events across the United States in the coming months to help build brand awareness and increase subscriber rates to their respective media properties.

According to the press release, the 2017 Food & Wine Experience series is "a culinary tour that will highlight regional food trends and local chefs and alcohol experts, complete with samples from area restaurants for attendees to try, seminars and kitchen displays."
Martha will host four of the events, including the inaugural event with the Detroit Free Press in that city on September 16th. Cost of admission for these events will range in price, depending on the type of package and the location. The Detroit tickets begin at $90 (with $10 off for subscribers) and go as high as $120 for a VIP ticket.

Below is a list of dates and cities where Martha will be on hand for the Food & Wine Experience Series:

September 16: Detroit, Michigan
October 1: Ventura County, California
November 4: Scottsdale, Arizona
December 2: Las Vegas, Nevada