"Retail seems to be going really well, " the founder of Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia said. "People are spending on themselves, their children and their homes."
While Stewart noted that things are "not that great yet, " she added, "We can only be optimistic and that jobs will come and people will be able to enjoy life a little bit better in the next four or five years."
The looming fiscal cliff — when automatic tax increases and spending cuts go into effect at the beginning of the year — could "derail our confidence, " she warned.
Stewart called on politicians to act on the country's fiscal problems. "We have to encourage our political leaders to take this extremely seriously, " otherwise the consequences would be "dire, " she said.
Despite the uncertainty, Stewart, who was honoring small-business owners and entrepreneurs with her American Made awards, said it remains a good time to start a business. (Read More: Small Businesses 'Planting the Seeds' for a Recovery .)
"It's never the wrong time to start a good idea, " she said.
-By Justin Menza, CNBC News Writer
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