We received a number of phone calls in response to our letter from a reader who wanted a counter-top washer. It turns out this item is not as obscure as we thought.

Most of the people who called wanted to sell their units, which range from an almost brand new side-by-side Whirlpool washer and dryer purchased for $1,000 (will sell for $400), to a Rival counter-top washer used in a motor home, to a 24-inch square Avanti unit that both washes and dries. You drain the water after the wash cycle and turn on the dry cycle. "We used it in our trailer. The dry cycle was a little slow so we always took a clothes line with us," said the caller.One reader faxed us a copy of an advertisement for an Avanti wash n' dry unit. The ad says the unit is good for apartments, college dorms or anywhere a large washer and dryer won't fit.

The unit washes, rinses and dries and uses regular house current. Its capacity is up to 1 1/4 pounds.

The unit is available for $139 from a company called DAMARK. Its toll-free phone number is 1-800-729-9000.

In the meantime we have contacted our reader and given her names and phone numbers of people who are interested in selling their counter-top washers.

Mail-order merchandise

On Nov. 29 I mailed an order to Beauty Boutique in Cleveland, Ohio. I have ordered from this company before with no trouble. This was a Christmas order. My check was cashed Dec. 5, but no package. I had to buy substitute gifts.

I called the company on Jan. 2. Not only was it not a toll-free call, the girl I spoke to was very snippy. She told me my order was being packaged. I still haven't received it. - I.S., North Salt Lake.

The company says your magazine caddy, Estee Lauder makeup, Ciara perfume and nail file were shipped in mid-January. You should be receiving them soon.

The tea rose basket and the other item you ordered, Bal A Versailles (what in the world is that?), are temporarily out of stock.