2008 Arizona Quilters Hall of Fame Inductee
Eloise DeSpain is a key founder of High Desert Piecemakers, an active and excited group of quilter in Winslow. Each year, the group sponsors a quilt show as part of the community’s “Standin’ on a Corner” Festival, an event encompassing an antique auto show, street dances, and parties; bringing visitors from near and far to this small Northeastern Arizona town. The quilt show has become an integral part of the festival.
Eloise teaches group and individual classes on the techniques and history of quilting. A third generation Arizonan, her quilts often reflect the history and colors of her home state. Eloise lives in a 500 square foot home. On her property sits a 1700 square foot studio designated to her quilting and teaching. The numbers reflect the priorities in her life? The unique experience she offers students was highlighted in The Quilt: A History and Celebration of an American Art Form, by Elsie Schebler Roberts.
Eloise strives to preserve the traditional in quilting and is an avid hand-quilter. She is skilled in the restoration of historical and antique quilts. Many family heirlooms have been preserved through her efforts.
Professionally, Eloise is a former Professor of Humanities. When not in her studio, you will find her tending to her extensive garden. She has enabled charitable organizations to raise thousands of dollars through donating raffle quilts and has been recognized for her volunteer efforts. Gifted with wonderful sense of humor, Eloise is well-known for her distinctive footwear – converse high tops in every color and pattern imaginable.
In Accepting her recognition, Eloise said, “You could knock me over with a feather! It is an honor to be here. In moments of quiet desperation, I know that if I can just make it to my quilt frame, I can make it through the day. ‘Desperation’ is when required to stay outside of the room with duct tape over its mouth!”