The doyenne of domesticity wants you to throw a party that will be the talk of the town — and she's making it easier to do so than ever before. We've spent hours (OK, face it, days) trying to re-create the looks of some of Martha Stewart
's most beautiful baby showers and kids' parties, but with the launch of Martha Celebrations
, her new party supply shop at JC Penney, styling a soiree is as simple as visiting your local store. The line is packed with color-coordinated decorations, tableware, and sweets to turn even the least creative among us into the ultimate party planners.
Last night, I sat down with Martha (a dream come true) at a party to celebrate JC Penney's new home store. See what she had to say about decorating with kids in the home, her favorite things to do with her grandkids — Jude, 2, and Truman, 1 — which of her new sets she used for her granddaughter's recent birthday party, and whether moms really can "have it all."
POPSUGAR: Now that you're a grandmother, and you see all the gear and toys and mess that comes with kids, what one piece of decorating advice would you give to parents who are decorating with kids in mind?
Martha Stewart: Keep it simple. Keep the background very plain because you're going to add a lot to it. I've been watching my daughter, and I've been watching the decorating going on. I must say I really admire what she's doing because she has a blank slate with built-in furniture and the walls are bright white and she is putting the most incredible things on the walls — learning tools for the children. She has maps of the world — giant maps, maps of New York, maps of the United States, maps of the moon, from every angle — solar systems, alphabets. Name it, it's on the wall. It's very interesting and the children love it because everywhere they look they see something to learn.
PS: We're big fans of parties, so we're very excited about the celebration shop; what's your favorite baby shower theme?
MS: Any one of these can be adapted to a baby shower, it depends on what your house looks like, so that you can mix and match. I love the green fern, I love the pink for a girl, I used the red for Jude. [Martha's daughter, Alexis] had a 2-year-old Elmo party. I used a lot of the red for that party, and it was very successful.
PS: For moms who don't have a lot of time to put in for parties, but they want to throw a great party, what are your three elements of a party, shower, or birthday party that are must haves?
MS: You have to have something interesting that stands out, in terms of decoration. It could be just a ceiling covered with those gorgeous balloons and they're fabulous. It could be just a table decoration, beautiful paper stands and cardboard stands covered with cupcakes, although in our family the children don't eat sugar so everything is vegan and everything is very delicious. We had jello Elmos; they were a big hit, believe it or not! There was no birthday cake, so it forces you to be more creative!
PS: Have you started baking or cooking with the kids yet?
MS: Oh, the children cook all the time.
PS: What's your favorite thing to cook with them?
MS: Well, again it has to be primarily vegetarian. No sugar, no butter, and we make delicious food. Pastas and wonderful salads, asparagus . . .
Keep reading for Martha's thoughts on women trying to have it all and the best parenting trick her own mom taught her!