HGTV star Carol Duvall, ‘Queen of Crafts,’ dead at 97

Carol Duvall, an early fixture on HGTV and the so-called “Queen of Crafts,” has died. She was 97 years old.

Duvall died in Traverse City, Mich., on July 31, The New York Times reported Thursday. Duvall’s daughter-in-law, Rita Ann Doerr, told the newspaper she passed away at the assisted-living complex where she’d been living for several years.

Born Carol-Jean Reihmer in Milwaukee in 1926, Duvall got her start in showbiz on the children’s show “Jiffy Carnival” at the Michigan television station WOOD-TV in 1951.

“I was on the air a whole year before we even had a television set in our house,” she told The Detroit Free Press in 1997, per the Times. “Nobody even knew what I did when I left the house.”

In 1962, she started hosting the morning show “Living” on Detroit’s WWJ-TV. And when the station asked her to fill a five-minute gap in its evening schedule, Duvall showed off the crafts she had learned during her childhood.

“I’m not a crafter who got on television,” she said in a 1999 interview with the Knight Ridder News Service, per the Times. “I’m a television person who got into crafting.”

Duvall also brought her arts-and-crafts know-how to the ABC daytime show “Home” from 1988 to 1993.

And from 1994 to 2005, she hosted “The Carol Duvall Show” on HGTV.

“With plenty of self-effacing humor and practical knowledge, Carol demonstrates clever craft projects ranging from rubber stamping to jewelry making to scrapbooking,” the cable network says in its bio of Duvall.

“She was so approachable and natural,” Doerr told the Times. “She would laugh at herself.”

Duvall married Carl Duvall in 1945, though that relationship ended in divorce. She was predeceased by son Michael, who died in 2011, according to the Times. She is survived by son Jack, two grandchildren, and two great-grandchildren.

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