Interview: Martha Stewart Says She Enjoys 'Baking' With Snoop Dogg As She Discusses Latest 420-Fashion Collab

“As I reflect on my recent collaboration with Snoop, I realize I learn so much from him every time we work together. He’s taught me about music and business and always gives me a fresh perspective. We both help each other in that way,” says the world-famous media personality and businesswoman Martha Stewart during an exclusive interview. The conversation delves into her fun relationship with The Doggfather and their latest project in the smoking space, the Best Buds Bags, a venture in partnership with BIC EZ Reach Lighters that seamlessly blends functionality with high fashion.

Martha Stewart and Snoop Dogg's collaborations have become iconic in bringing together diverse worlds. Their joint endeavors began with the VH1 show “Martha & Snoop's Potluck Dinner Party,” a unique cooking show that debuted in 2016. This show was a hit, showcasing their chemistry and contrasting styles. It featured a variety of celebrity guests and combined cooking with light-hearted, entertaining segments.

Their partnership then extended beyond the show, including various appearances and joint projects. They have since appeared together in a number of commercials (i.e. Skechers’ Super Bowl ads) and public events, often highlighting their unlikely but genuine friendship. Their collaborations often play on their contrasting personalities and backgrounds, as they also share a mutual respect and a sense of humor that resonates with wide and diverse audiences.

Their latest project in the world of fashion accessories is a natural progression of their dynamic partnership.

The Rise Of Functional Accessories

In this sense, it's important to consider the broader context of the fashion industry. According to McKinsey's “The State of Fashion 2024” report, the industry faces uncertainty, with subdued economic growth and weak consumer confidence globally. Despite these challenges, the report anticipates a global industry growth of 2% to 4% in 2024, varying across different regions and segments.

The report also shows that there’s a growing demand for technical outdoor clothing and “gorpcore” as consumers embrace healthier lifestyles. In 2024, more outdoor brands are expected to launch lifestyle collections, while lifestyle brands are incorporating technical elements into their collections, blurring the lines between functionality and style. This trend reflects a shift in consumer preferences, where practicality is as important as aesthetics in fashion choices.

This situates Stewart and Snoop Dogg’s project within the larger dynamics of the fashion industry, illustrating how their project aligns with global trends despite economic uncertainties. The trend towards functional accessories is a key part of the evolving fashion landscape, where consumers are looking for products that offer both style and practicality

“It’s no secret that Snoop and I need a lighter for many activities, so (...) when BIC approached us for this project, it was an easy yes. Why not make lighters a fashion statement together?” Stewart says.

Fashionable And Functional

Stewart recalls the inspiration behind the Best Buds Bags with a sense of accomplishment. “I wanted to create a fashion accessory… that was both fashionable and functional,” she explains. The bags were conceived as a fusion of Stewart's minimalist chic style and the practicality of an everyday essential, the lighter.

The bags were also a prelude to Stewart's upcoming BIC EZ Reach Lighters collection, which is expected to launch in early 2024, and will “feature beautiful patterns and colors that are chic and minimalistic,” she shares with a designer's pride.

The design process of the bags is yet another testament to Stewart's commitment to merging aesthetics with practicality. “It’s a very thoughtful and thorough process,” she describes, highlighting the meticulous care that goes into each design element. Because Stewart keeps a lighter in nearly every room, she “wanted the design to be pleasing to the eye.”

“My next collection of lighter designs will feature more of a metallic and patterned look that are chic, elegant and functional,” she adds.

The partnership with Snoop Dogg adds an additional layer of richness to the project. Renowned for their unique and dynamic pairing, Stewart and Snoop Dogg bring together contrasting but complementary styles. “He’s a great friend and business partner who is always fun to work with,” Stewart remarks, highlighting the duo's harmonious collaboration. Their relationship transcends business, fostering mutual learning and a shared creative journey.

As mentioned above, a harmonious balance between aesthetic appeal and functionality is central to Stewart's design philosophy. And her new bag embodies this approach. “I use a lighter daily, for everything from cooking to candles,” she states, underscoring the practical integration of the BIC EZ Reach Lighter into the bag's design. This feature ensures the lighter is not only accessible but also a stylish element of the bag.

“With the (...) lighter acting as the latch that opens the bag, my lighter is easily accessible and doesn’t get lost at the bottom of my purse,” she explains. Her fondness for the product is evident as she adds, “I love this bag so much I even snagged a few extra to give to my family and friends this holiday season.”

In discussing the target audience for the new line of bags, Stewart emphasizes inclusivity. “Anybody who uses a lighter” should love this, she exclaims. This statement underscores her vision of creating products that cater to a broad demographic, transcending traditional boundaries. The secret pockets, while a clever addition, are just one of the many features that make these bags appealing to a diverse audience.

As the conversation shifts to the impact of this collaboration on the fashion industry, Stewart reflects on its broader implications. The intersection of utility accessories and cannabis in fashion is a burgeoning trend, and Stewart and Snoop’s new bags are at the forefront. “This intersection has already been on the rise,” Stewart observes, suggesting that their latest collaboration could set a precedent, inspiring other brands to explore similar avenues.

Keeping Up With Cultural Shifts

Stewart's journey with the Best Buds Bags is not just a tale of fashion and functionality; it's one steeped in collaborative spirit and cultural significance. This alliance, born out of a mutual understanding and diverse creative expressions, signifies more than just a business venture to them; it's a celebration of friendship and shared values.

Their collaboration, however, extends beyond personal rapport. It's a reflection of a larger cultural shift, Stuart explains. In her view, it represents a movement towards mainstream acceptance of cannabis.

Best Buds Collection. COURTESY OF BIC

In fact, Stewart and Snoop Dogg have been instrumental in subtly steering this change through their work. “[Some] brands (...) are keeping up with cultural shifts and understand their consumers. Snoop and I have been working with BIC on campaigns that wink to this cultural shift in cheeky ways, like our first ‘Pass It’ spot and ‘Most Borrowed’ ads with Willie Nelson last year. We’ve always had so much fun working (...) on these projects and the response has always been great,” Stewart notes, acknowledging the role of such collaborations in shaping public perception and consumer trends. This partnership represents a significant stride in normalizing cannabis-related products, integrating them into mainstream fashion and lifestyle.

Celebrity Endorsements, Authenticity And Philanthropy

Celebrity endorsements, especially in the cannabis industry, are a powerful tool, and Stewart is acutely aware of the influence she wields. “I can only speak for myself, but whenever I sign on for a brand endorsement, it has to feel authentic to me,” she states. This commitment to genuine endorsements is reflective of a broader trend in the industry, where celebrity involvement is becoming increasingly prevalent and influential.

“Celebrities have a lot of power to influence trends and I want to make sure what I’m promoting is genuine,” she adds, as she predicts, “we’re going to see a lot more celebrities interested in similar endorsements. And, as more celebrities sign on to promote herb-related products and accessories, we’re going to see the industry continue to expand.”

In reflecting on the broader implications of celebrity influence in the fashion industry, it's crucial to consider insights from an analysis by Lefty, an influencer marketing platform, reported by Vogue Business, which revealed that celebrities accounted for 57% of the total visibility for top fashion brands in the first nine months of 2023, up significantly from the previous year. This data underscores Stewart’s observations about cultural shifts and the growing impact of celebrity endorsements.

Moreover, the role of celebrity endorsements in the cannabis industry is becoming increasingly pivotal. While specific Earned Media Value stats for the cannabis sector are not readily available, it's clear that celebrities like Stewart are shaping consumer perceptions — as explained in this Rolling Stone article, similar to their influence in fashion. This trend suggests a parallel between the fashion and cannabis industries, where celebrity involvement is not only prevalent but also a driving force in brand recognition and consumer trends.

The philanthropic aspect of the Best Buds Bags collaboration is another dimension close to Stewart’s heart. The Martha Stewart Centers for Living, an organization dedicated to offering seniors high-quality primary care, will benefit from the proceeds of these bags. “The holiday times are all about giving back,” she shares, explaining that 100% of proceeds derived from the sale of these bags during the Holiday season would be donated to this group. This gesture adds a layer of social responsibility to the project, aligning with Stewart's ethos of contributing positively to the community.

‘Baking’ With Snoop

As the discussion starts to wrap up, Stewart reflects on the overwhelming consumer reception of this new product line. “It’s exceeding my expectations,” she reveals, with evident satisfaction. The success of the bags, selling out within the first 48 hours of their launch, not only validates Stewart's vision but also signals a shift in consumer preferences and market trends.

In a final, playful note, when asked about sharing a joint with anyone, Stewart's response is lighthearted yet poignant. “I’d certainly enjoy some… ‘baking’ with Snoop,” she says with a chuckle, encapsulating the unique and endearing nature of their partnership.

Martha Stewart's foray into the world of functional fashion accessories with the Best Buds Bags is more than just a successful business venture. It is a reflection of her style, her values and her vision for the future of fashion and utility. As this narrative continues to unfold, it leaves us anticipating what Stewart and her collaborators will unveil next, promising further innovation, style and cultural resonance in the evolving world of fashion and cannabis.

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This article was originally published on Forbes and appears here with permission. It does not represent Benzinga's reporting and has not been edited for content or accuracy.

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