Podcast: "I went on MARTHA, and then..." with Liz Smith

24 Feb 2012

Martha Stewart and Me_web
All images used with permission. Author photo below is by Eling // migration goods

If you're a crafter, there's a pretty slim chance that you've never heard of Martha Stewart. For many of us, she represents a kind of pinnacle in terms of business success, and in many cases, we see fellow crafters featured in her magazines and TV shows and assume that this was their springboard into the Big Time.

Liz Smith Never Not MakingWell, in this podcast, we'll hear from Liz Smith, who makes polymer clay and felt creations under the name Made in Lowell. Liz is one of those lucky crafters who got to go to Manhattan and craft with Martha on live, national television. So, what was that like? And what effect did it have on her business afterward? We find out in the show.

One of the things I appreciate most about Liz is that she has a very clear view of what "success" means for her, and she stays grounded in that. I think it's tempting to dream about some outside influence coming along and handing us that mythical "big break" that will turn us magically into a big success.

But you know what? You can actually hand yourself breaks anytime you like. And you get to decide how you define success.

Turquoise egg

Links for Liz and Martha:

• Here's the Made in Lowell online shop.

• Watch Liz's segment on MARTHA here, and on that same page you'll find the instructions to make her polymer clay egg ornaments.

• Not long after that, Martha made another of Liz's crafts on the show: these place card holders.

• Liz keeps a blog called Mill Girl where she chronicles her daily life. Say howdy to her on Twitter, too.



I'm finally having time to catch up! And such a great show. Also, liking the transition music your using now. Liz was great because she's so honest and says what people are really thinking anyway.

As of yet, I haven' have much interest in felting or polymer clay, but when she said that in her brain they were both the same, both "playing with color", I really lined up with that. Which makes me much more interested in those crafts now.

I also loved how she talked about using the brief moments in the spotlight as a springboard for the next thing and who much value she's gotten from local media.

Looking forward to checking out the books, too.

Ah, a fascinating perspective, Veronique - thank you for sharing it!

Really enjoyed hearing your podcast with Liz. We have done craft shows with Liz in the past and she is very sweet and inspiring to talk to and always willing to share insight into the crafting world. ~Paul

Martha, smartha! I think anyone who gets interviewed on Craftypod gets the real feather in their cap and has it "made." Great podcast with lots to think about!

Heh! :-) Thanks, Sarah! There's the question for the ages: when is "made" really "made?"

I've had the pleasure of chatting with Liz at Bazaar Bizarre, so it was nice to see her interviewed here.

I just wanted to say THANK YOU for bringing the podcast back - and for working so hard to find a solution that works for you financially and for your audience!

One of the most timely and interesting things to me about this interview was Liz's personal definition of success. Similar to Liz's Martha experience, I am at a point in my professional journey where people that I encounter equate the fact that I work for a certain company with having "made it," whereas I am beginning to feel "meh," about it. Very timely food for thought in this interview - so thank you again.


Liz is a joy to know and always so inspiring. Thank you!

Wow, that polymer egg is beautiful. Just gorgeous. Looking forward to listening to the podcast.

Wow, I didn't quite expected that, thanks for another food-for-thought-full podcast!

I'd just like to add my french grain of salt about something you say in the end, that especially in the american culture, business is only about the money. When I was in the research phase before creating my business back in France, I spent a lot of time online, but also in book stores and even in fairs dedicated to future or beginner entrepreneurs. And my oh my, all that made me cringe and feel bad. Nothing in it was for me, it always made me feel like an entrepreneur must be a guy wearing a suit (or a woman wearing a gray lady's suit and high heels, you get the picture) and whose only dream is to make as much money as possible. So I took all the french legal informations I had to know, and for the rest, my refuge was in the countless american books about being a creative entrepreneur, like Craft Inc. or my favorite The Boss of you. Americans may like to make / talk about money, but they also organize conferences like CCE and publish books like the ones I mentioned, and as surprising as it may seem, not every country has that :).

Liz is refreshing and so smart! Of course I will milk my Martha appearance for as long as I can, but Liz is right...if you are trying to grow your business it is always a hustle. Even for us "Martha Alums", haha! Thanks, Diane, for a great podcast!

Can't wait to hear Liz since I've only chatted with her on Twitter! I have her pincushion ring and just love it. I learn a great deal from her on Twitter and am always inspired by her!