Get to know Laurel

Laurel always said, “I refuse to have anything in my life that I cannot turn around into something magical and beautiful.”

Laurel began making jewelry in the Haight-Ashbury district of San Francisco in the late 1960’s, selling her designs on the streets and in local galleries. Her unique jewelry was featured in Vogue Magazine in the 1970’s after the necklace she was wearing impressed an editor of the magazine. She had created it from found objects she hammered on the back of a frying pan. Laurel quickly became an internationally renowned artist and designer. 

As a self-taught artist, she traveled around the world to work with local artists and learn their craft. Her first trip to China in the 1970’s was groundbreaking as she was the first woman to work with a Chinese company to create her own designs using their ancient cloisonné techniques. Her trips to Egypt, the Middle East, Mexico and Bali inspired her to create new collections. On her trips to Bali, she worked with local craftspeople to create hand-carved figurines and jewelry. In the American Southwest, Laurel witnessed the wild mustangs running free through Elk Canyon. This inspired her to create the Wild Horses of Fire, one of her most treasured paintings. Her design inspirations came from the many personal experiences she had with diverse cultures of the world. 

She formed her own company Laurel Burch, Inc. and was the first designer to create a boutique within a Macy’s department store. This resulted in the creation of a model that many designers follow to this day.

Her life’s work was about the connectedness of all living things, which is expressed through her art and messages, bears important relevance today. There are lots of stories about the giving, receiving and sharing of Laurel Burch art that perfectly reflect her spirit and love of life. These stories inspire many Laurel Burch fans and collectors, young and old, who have been deeply touched by her designs.

On September 13, 2007, Laurel passed away due to complications from osteopetrosis. She was truly a remarkable spirit. Although she is greatly missed by those that knew her personally, and many who did not, her art and messages will forever brighten our world.

 

Aarin Burch, CEO

Laurel Burch Studios

10 comments

Her works are very beautiful, taking us into another dimension. I bought notebook with the blue cats many years ago for my daughter did not know who was the artist. Today I came across Laurel Burch works on the internet for some art inspiration and my daughter walk right to me with the note book , so now we know . I saw lots of cats wood work in Bali more than 20 years ago , make me realized they were inspired by her beautiful works.

napapon April 21, 2021

Something I’ve never heard anyone talk about Laurel Burch designs is the companies she worked with in the early years. I worked at “Thousand Flowers” for several years and was told by one of the owners that Laurel worked with them for a time ( I don’t know how long), but if you look at their earliest catalog- I see those cat earrings…. people often confuse their earrings…. I’m just wondering what other people think of this…. thanks

P. Amantea February 04, 2020

Purchased my first purse. Besides loving the purse myself I get asked so many
Times when out shopping where did I get it and could they have the web site
So they too may order their first purse!! Know I got a winner!!!! Thank you

Patty December 04, 2018

I love Laurel Burch products and hope to visit the studio in Marin the next time I am in CA. I started with a fat qtr of fabric and built on that. I have made at least 15 Laurel Burch quilts, was gifted a Laurel Burch purse, and am hoping Santa brings me earrings this Christmas. Love, love, the designs. Keep bringing them out.

Peggie Gordon December 04, 2018

Enjoyed getting to know your mother better. First got to know her Art work on a Olivia Cruise. I loved the color she used and her jewelry is exquisite. Thank you Aaron

Jean larrick December 04, 2018

Enjoyed getting to know your mother better. First got to know her Art work on a Olivia Cruise. I loved the color she used and her jewelry is exquisite. Thank you Aaron

Jean larrick December 04, 2018

Her beautiful designs are timeless. I loved collecting and wearing her earrings in the 1970’s when I was in my twenties, and I still love wearing them to this day. Each pair is a beautiful work of art, and Laurel has added such joy to my life.

Maggie December 04, 2018

She was – & continues to be- an incredible inspiration.

Kate December 04, 2018

I LOVED her artwork, her beautiful jewelry and her philosophy. I made
many trips to the galleries in Sausalito and Carmel. I have collected her
jewelry since the 70’s. She had such an amazing gift for design and color.
She has been an inspiration for her unique designs and we all miss her.

sandy quong December 04, 2018

Love her art, miss her, so glad she was on the planet to make it more magical and beautiful. <3

Loni Reynolds December 04, 2018

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