Germantown, Md., ceramicist Marcia Skolnick-Simonson, 35, who "hates crafts fairs," and woodworker Peter Kramer, 41, Washington, Va., who uses crafts fairs, showrooms and mail-order catalogues to sell his Colonial-style furniture, share one marketing approach:
Their work appears in "The Goodfellow Catalog of Wonderful Things," a California-published crafts mail-order catalogue, essentially a juried crafts fair between covers. This compendium of crafts from across the country is juried by Goodfellow's 10-member staff, now selecting craftspeople for their third catalogue.
"Functional" crafts as well as "flights of fancy" are represented, with information provided on the work, its maker and ordering.
"Wonderful" things include hand-carved crochet hooks and walking sticks, colonial nutcrackers, canoes and "corrugahorns" (the invention of their maker), toys - Mother Goose, Fat Cat and Friends - a female clown, and old-fashioned mustache wax.
To apply for Goodfellow III, craftspeople should send slides/photographs of their work, complete with a description and pricing information. A $5 processing fee - the only charge for inclusion in the catalogue - is required. Applications must be received before July 30.
We look "for crafts executed in a professional, exciting way," says its originator, Christopher Weills, 38, Berkeley, Calif. They select, he says, "things that we like." A craftsperson's reliability and professionalism is crucial, says Weills, since the catalogue's success depends on responsible filling of orders.
The book's "message," says Weills: "You have the ability to use your imagination, to carve out with your own hands your own lifestyle. The book is a clarion call that one has control over one's own destiny."
Weills, who decided to start a business which would allow him time to travel around the country, started with a 1973 newsletter, "The Goodfellow Review of Crafts," which grew into the first Goodfellow catalogue, 1974, with 100 pages and 50 craftsmen, and Goodfellow II, 1977, 350 craftspeople and more than 1,000 works in 418 pages. Projections for Goodfellow III are 450 craftsmen and 650 pages.
Craftspeople may contact Christopher Weills (415) 845-7645 for application information. Copies of the book are available from the Goodfellow Catalog of Wonderful Things. P.O. 4520, Berkeley, Calif. 94704. Price: $8.95 plus $1 postage. CAPTION: Picture, Handcrafted rocking horse; from "The Goodfellow Catalog of Wonderful Things"