Martha Stewart’s “American Made”








Working a loom in my dorm at college

For more than 20 years, my friend Martha Stewart has celebrated a spirit of innovation in the pages of her magazines, on her television shows and, more recently, online. Now, through American Made —founded in 2012— Martha and the editors of Martha Stewart Living are spotlighting the next generation of great American makers: entrepreneurs, artisans, and small-business owners who are creating beautiful, inspiring, useful products; pioneering new industries; improving local communities; and changing the way we eat, shop, work, and live.  

Martha and her team believe we are in the midst of a shift in our culture where creative entrepreneurs are defining a new American economy. From Detroit to Des Moines, Spokane to St. Louis, people are choosing Main Street over mini-malls—supporting the local and the handmade. Our country’s ‘makers’ are sparking this change by taking a leap, banking on their creativity and craftsmanship, and living their version of the American dream. I love this concept and want to applaud her and her team for honoring, in their words, “makers, small business owners and creative entrepreneurs in the fields of crafts, design, food and style. These makers are recognized for their dedication to creating beautiful, quality products and building successful businesses and communities.” I appreciate their valuing local artistry and handwork, creative design, and the work of the hand over mass produced factory products that depend more heavily on fossil fuels.

If you want to know more about this project, read the stories of past winners, or nominate a craftsperson who’s work you admire, visit the American Made website at:

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This year I am going to nominate my college friend and fellow weaver, Peggy Hart. Peggy and I both started weaving in our youth, but bonded when we found each other weaving blankets in our college dorm rooms, an uncommon college diversion. Peggy has made a life-long career out of weaving. She makes cotton and wool blankets on the last of the shuttle looms manufactured in Worcester, MA for the American woolen industry.















Here she is at work, weaving a blanket.

Peggy’s baby blankets have long been a favorite gift item of mine for new moms. I have often received thank you letters from the recipients who happily report that the blanket goes everywhere with their child! Made of cotton, they can be dragged through mud and still get clean again, thanks to a pass through the washing machine.


Here are some examples of the beautiful patterns she weaves. If you wish to see more of Peggy’s blankets, check out her website:

Do you have any favorite craftspeople to nominate, and what do they do?
Don’t forget that the deadline to submit nominations on the American Made website is August, 31st!

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8 Responses to Martha Stewart’s “American Made”

  1. Anni Campbell (NCS '71) says:

    I would like to nominate Peter Bloch, “Bloch of Wood” is his business in New London,New Hampshire. He creates gorgeous wooden lampshades. Very unique and American made.

  2. Phyll says:

    Albert Pine, a nineteenth-century English author said, “What we do for ourselves, dies with us. What we do for others and the world, remains, and is immortal.”

    Such are the wonderful contributions of Martha Stewart and others whose contributions in art, music, culinary creations and craftsmanship add to the quality of ALL our lives. It’s my pleasure to nominate a local fiber arts artist, Rebecca Lambers, whose custom made scarves, hats, belts, skirts, dresses and slacks add to the beauty, grace and elegance of clothing. Also, her hand made silk flowers are a joy to behold any time of the year, for any occasion or no special occasion at all. Just for fun and happiness!

    Thank you for introducing this topic, Eileen. Ever stimulating, always interesting! Martha Stewart brings creativity, useful information and a wealth of gifts, skills and talents into our lives and to the world at-large. Her legacy will forever be remembered and cherished.

    • eileenrockefeller says:

      I’m so glad to hear this stimulated an idea of someone to nominate Phyll! I hope you don’t find the form too arduous!

  3. Meg Campbell says:

    Lovely Eileen. Did you see the little story I wrote about Peggy’s blankets? Here it is:

    • Phyll says:

      Meg, your story about “Blankie” is truly tender and touching. As I was reading along, I could feel the emotional attachments you and your daughter (especially) felt to this beautifully woven, soft, comforting hand-woven work of art.

      I delighted in your phrase, “loved to extinction.” Wow, that says it all. Mused, at driving around in dense fog, wishing you were home in a warm bath. Could relate to growing older and kids leaving the nest (even though I’m childless) and was intrigued by your journey through time as a woman, fellow-artist and spirit on the path of Life.

      You writing is sensitive, empathic and simply beautiful. Thank you so much for sharing it and the sweet sensations in your photographs. I am touched. By your story.
      And, Blankie’s. 🙂

    • eileenrockefeller says:

      Dear Meg. I LOVED the story you did about Peggy’s blankets, and was very touched by it. I’m sorry if I didn’t get back to you on that. Our younger son is getting married in 2 weeks!

    • eileenrockefeller says:

      Meg, I did and I LOVED it. I thought I wrote you about it. It was beautifully written too.

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