Matthew Burak

Joe Keenan is the executive editor of Total Retail. Joe has more than 10 years experience covering the retail industry, and enjoys profiling innovative companies and people in the space.

WHAT GOT HIM HERE: A strange journey. After working previously as a landscape architect and spending 10 years out at sea as a private yacht sailor, Mark Desrochers returned home to start a woodworking business with his best friend, Matthew Burak. “Matt had a long and successful run as a furniture maker,” Desrochers recalls. “We incubated this table leg business for a few years inside of his furniture business.” As for the direct marketing side of the business, this was the first venture into that arena for the pair. “We were introduced to direct marketing through a customer in Matt’s furniture store,” Desrochers

When I picked up this catalog, I was immediately impressed by the clean and consistent design. It has structure without seeming stuffy, and features tons of information that’s easy to read and understand. Oh, and did I mention the gorgeous, rich products? Yes, this is a good catalog — handsome and well put together. It’s instructional without being cold. It’s full of information and products, without real clutter. I concluded rather quickly that this fine catalog could be used in design schools as an example of a hard-working catalog that doesn’t lose its beauty. Positives, Improvements Of course, there’s always room for improvement. Starting with the cover:

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