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49 of 50 found the following review helpful:
Projects are elegant and simple, yet make a statement. Sep 12, 1999
For any Martha Stewart fan, a must. This is a collection of her easiest projects, yet they really pack a punch. Try giving someone a gift wrapped in a paper bag tied with raffia and a fall leaf gift tag with their name written in gold ink. Faster than all that tape and expensive paper, and just see how impressed they will be with such a simple statement. The book is full of ideas like this. And they can be translated from one use to another. (You never entertain and use place cards? Try those ideas for gift tags.) The book is slightly overpriced for a softbound volume, but it it worth it not having to wade through three years of Marth Stewart Living trying to remember what issue that pilow project you are thinking of was in.
37 of 37 found the following review helpful:
The Essential Martha Jun 11, 2001
In the introduction to this book, Martha Stewart defines what she and her staff consider a "good thing". It must be uncomplicated, useful, aesthetically pleasing, interesting, pertinent, unusual, and done with materials that are easily found. I would say that about 75% of the projects in this book meet those criteria as I would apply them.
The book is well organized into seven sections: entertaining, cooking, celebrating, giving, gardening, decorating, and homekeeping. I found useful ideas in each section - some sections were better than others for me - but even the ones of lesser interest to me were still lovely to look at. At the end of the book, Stewart includes a source guide for most of the materials used in this book.
I especially liked the kitchen tips (in the cooking section); the easy instruction for handmade soaps; tole painting on tin buckets; and the organizing hints which included record-keeping.
Some of the ideas did not appeal to me at all (like gluing live ivy leaves along the edges of a tablecloth, making a linen table-sized mat, making linen basket liners, and constructing wraps for bottles) but then again, they were fun to look at!
The beautiful arrangement of this book and its photos made it worth buying.
25 of 26 found the following review helpful:
The literary bon-bon from Martha Sep 20, 2001
This book puts the best of the best right where you need them. I have used this book so many times I can't even count. My apartment is a testament to Martha Stewart, and when I buy a house, it will be even worse. I can't tell you how the dishwashing soap bottle just improves the look of the kitchen, not to mention using the concentrated stuff and diluting it with water saves money and the environment. Just so many things, I can't count. . .little things, that make it go a long way. See also Good Things For Organizing, which gave me four things to use the night I got it.
15 of 15 found the following review helpful:
The best of the magazine ! Oct 02, 2002
By Tonyi Thomas Pelham
If you don't subscribe to Martha's expensive magazine (I don't), then this book is the only thing you need to own. It is the best of all the good ideas without weeding through ads.
20 of 23 found the following review helpful:
The Best "MARTHA" book!!! and believe me I've read them all! Apr 02, 1999
This book is fab!!! It contains neat little projects on everything from food to tools!! I f you want a Martha book tht's not just focused on one topic such as gardening or cooking, this book is definately for you! It contains the best projects on entertaining, cooking, celebrating, giving, gardening, decorating, and homekeeping. As usual Martha throws in a couple X-tra tips too! In one word.......FABULOUS!!!!
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