Handbags are just one aspect of this talented woman's recognized artistic endeavors - she is also famous for her colorful spiritual fabric designs and jewelry.
Laurel Burch has been creating her mythical cats, dogs, horses, and spiritual entities since the mid-sixties and is most recognized for her imaginative cats and vivid colors. This self-taught artist began her journey as a child. During frequent hospitalizations because of a rare bone condition, she started making small gifts to cheer up the other patients and as a "thank you" to the Nursing staff. Laurel started collecting bones, beads, and rocks to put together in special ways to make her own jewelry. When someone would admire or comment on these unique jewelry pieces, she would offer them as gifts to the admirer.
Her handbags grew out of this love of mythical figures and bold patterns. The dog purses, cat handbags, and other mythical animal bags have made her world famous.
Blossoming Feline Crossbody Bag by Laurel Burch
Her life is best described in a direct quote from this spiritual woman who gives so much to others: "The purpose of my art is to inspire living from the heart. I want to create in a way that celebrates life in the most intimate and precious ways possible, for ourselves and for each other".
There needs to be a postscript to this history of Laurel Burch. On September 13, 2007, Ms. Burch died peacefully from complications of her life long bone disease, osteoporosis, at the age of 61. This talented and wonderful woman touched so many lives with the beauty of her designs and, in spite of her pain and hardships, carried within her a bright and shining light of love and happiness.
May she rest in peace...