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The Dovetail Studio in Egg Harbor, Wis. Photo by Diana Lambdin Meyer

The Crafts Report Magazine
 


DOVETAIL GALLERY ARTICLES
Wisconsin Artists Find
Sales and Inspiration Online


Excerpt from The Crafts Report, 2008
By Diana Lambdin Meyer
 

There were no eggs in Egg Harbor, Wis., until Kathy Beck came to town in 1993. Egg Harbor is one of the many little bucolic villages along the peninsula known as Door County, a place that calls to craft artisans and others to express themselves.

As an artist specializing in intricately carved designs on eggs of all shapes and sizes, Beck was a natural fit to the charm of Egg Harbor, a community of 215 residents overlooking the bay of Green Bay.

“The name of the town is a huge part of the success of my business,” said Beck, who admitted she sometimes has to explain the connection to tourists.“But when they get it, they love it and often end up making an egg purchase in Egg Harbor.”

 
 

The name of Beck’s gallery is Dovetail, reflecting the construction style of the 1870s-era log home in which she and her husband live and work. Uncertain whether the egg concept would work when she opened the gallery 15 years ago, Beck didn’t want to become too connected to the image in case it failed.

  Kathleen Beck carvs an egg in her studio.
   

However, when Beck credits the link between her medium and her address for her success, she’s being modest. Living in a tourist community,where harsh winters require most in the area to make their annual income during “the season,” Beck has learned working 11-hour days, 7 days a week during the 5 months between May and October makes her most accessible to tourists.

Those who visit or live in Door County have a selection of artistic mediums to choose from throughout the peninsula, and specifically at Dovetail. Beck carries the work of about 100 artisans in her studio, many of them who also specialize in carved eggshells, and some from as far away as Japan and Russia. But she also represents artists whose canvas is clay, wood, polymer and thread.

“Most of my sales come directly from customers who walk through the door, but my website (www.dovetailgallery.com) has become the best source for finding others to represent in my gallery,” Beck said. “Others whose work is similar to mine find me via the Web.”