Martha Stewart’s elongated comeback from her prison stint has gone so full circle, she routinely reflects on and even jokes about it now.
LIke recently when she posted a TikTok clip that combined the holiday spirit with a hoosegow story. While locked up for five months from 2004-2005, Stewart just couldn’t contain her crafty impulses and created a pottery project – a full nativity scene.
She not only crafted the lovely set while locked up, she’s recently created a new 14-piece replica set you can buy from her.
“If you’d like to give a really beautiful and special gift this Christmas with a little street cred, they’re all inspired by – guess what – a set I made when I was confined,” Stewart said in the TikTok video. “They still have my number on the bottom. These are exact replicas of a nativity scene that I made in my pottery class when I was away at camp.”
As Today explained, the “number” she is referring to is her inmate number, probably used to identify which pieces in the kiln belonged to whom.
It’s taken a while since Stewart, 80, could make light of her stay at Alderson Federal Prison Camp minimum-security federal prison in West Virginia. She was convicted on multiple felony charges, including conspiracy and obstruction of justice.
In 2017, she admitted to Katie Couric that it was indeed a “horrifying experience.”
“...no one should have to go through that kind of indignity, really,” said Stewart, “except for murderers, and there are a few other categories. But no one should have to go through that. It’s a very, very awful thing.”
Once she got out, Stewart proved as adept at turning her dented reputation around as she is at making decorative tchotchkes, and now she can giggle about the experience with Snoop Dogg, or turn it into another money-making venture, like this nativity scene.
While reflecting on the experience with Harper’s Bazaar earlier this year, Stewart said prison was tough, but she claims that she came through a stronger person. “I’m not bitter about it," she said, "but …. My daughter knows all the problems that resulted because of that. There’s a lot.”
As far as regrets, Stewart admits to only one – a missed chance to host "Saturday Night Live." As she told CBS’ “Sunday Morning” in 2017, “My only big regret that I can talk about is that 'Saturday Night' Live asked me to host," said Stewart. "My probation officer wouldn’t give me the time. That really pissed me off, because I would have loved to have hosted 'Saturday Night Live.' I’d like that on my résumé.”
Stewart did add something to her resume while still in prison though – crocheting. “I learned how to crochet. I still have the gorgeous crocheted poncho [that I wore leaving prison]. It’s in the attic.”
Though that one, as reported by the New York Times later, wasn’t made by the home decorating icon.
“This was made by a friend of mine, a wonderful lady,” said Stewart, as she held up the poncho at a company meeting after her release. “The yarn came from the commissary. The night before I left, she handed me this — not wrapped, because there is no wrapping paper — and she said, ‘Wear it in good health.’”
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