Art of Laurel Burch

by jptanabe

My first impression of Laurel Burch art was Wow - colors, and imaginative fanciful creatures - I love it!

I was first introduced to the amazing art of Laurel Burch when I ordered some Laurel Burch socks from a catalog, planning to give them away as gifts. It was so hard to give them away, I loved them all so much!

Her art is so imaginative and colorful, it just makes me smile. Laurel Burch captured the essence of creatures like cats and dogs and added a special magic of her own. Her use of color, pattern and arrangement of these amazing creatures is quite out of this world.

Laurel Burch cats are special

Laurel Burch is known for her delightful cats. For a cat lover like myself, that really makes her work very attractive.

Her work is available on socks, bags, pillows, throws, mugs, and even umbrellas - although that seems a bit mean to me to put cats out in the rain and expect them to keep me dry!

About Laurel Burch

Laurel Burch was one of these amazing self-taught artists. An American from California, however her life began so far from the "American dream" it could be seen as closer to a nightmare. From desperate beginnings she clung to hope through all kinds of adversity. It is the hope you see in her art, never the adversity!

Her personal life was one of great struggle (she suffered from the painful bone disease osteopetrosis), and left home at age 14 with nothing more than a paper bag of belongings. Already divorced with two children by age 20 she began making jewelry from junk metal and selling it on the street in San Francisco. Her work was popular and she taught herself to paint. Now there are bags, scarves, socks and other items based on her original artwork.

From such humble beginnings Laurel Burch designs became internationally acclaimed. Not seeking personal fortune, and ever aware of the importance of healing, Laurel supported many charities. She died in 2007.

She created the most inspiring works of art that are just filled with joy and hope. The colors swirl and dance, and the creatures she portrayed are filled with fascinating quirks and aspects of character that you can recognize in the real thing.


Laurel Burch really captured the essence of cats and went beyond! I just love her use of color as well as shape and the style of the cats in each composition.

We have had several cats so I can recognize similarities and differences in their personalities in each of her cat pictures. 

A superior cat!

Cats are rather special creatures - quite hard to know what they're thinking. Except that they know they are superior, and your purpose in life must be to serve them and satisfy all their needs! Laurel Burch created some amazing cat pictures, perfectly capturing the enigma and superiority of the cat.

And they make the best pillows - you can cuddle them without fear of an annoyed cat scratching you!

And here is a selection of umbrellas decorated with her cats.


Laurel Burch has some great dog pictures too - so dog lovers certainly don't feel left out! When I look at Laurel Burch art I think she must be like me - a cat person who appreciates dogs, but who likes the mystical in all things.

She uses amazing colors when painting - creating images that reflect something quite magical. And these dogs are certainly enjoying her world!


Laurel Burch obviously had a special relationship with horses - her horse pictures are beyond amazing. They have a delicacy and intimacy that comes from understanding these spirited creatures on that mythical level of consciousness.

These "Wild Horses of Fire" on this bag are really special. Look at these colors, and the shape of them - aren't they out of this world? 

More exotic creatures

Yes, Laurel Burch loves to use color. So of course when she ventured into more exotic species the colors became even wilder! She painted vibrantly colored people, butterflies, birds, flowers, fish and other animals that are fantastically whimsical.

Some of these creatures are so out of this world, at least in terms of color and pattern. Yet in Laurel Burch's world they all harmonize beautifully together. Interestingly, this collection is called "Kindred Creatures."

Exotic Socks

These kindred creatures have led to quite an amazing collection of Laurel Burch socks - leopards, giraffes, birds of paradise and so on.

Aren't these Bird of Paradise socks gorgeous? No-one would ever accuse you of giving a boring gift if you gave them these socks!

And there are plenty of other exotic socks to choose from, from Mermaids to Butterflies, to even more imaginative images - Mystic Moon anyone?

The Laurel Burch story on YouTube

More about Laurel Burch

Official website of Laurel Burch artworks and life

Updated: 06/23/2022, jptanabe
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candy47 on 06/01/2015

Many years ago I had a Laurel Burch wallet with a metal buckle of 3 cats. Too bad it's been discontinued, I'd love to replace it. Love the travel bag!

jptanabe on 01/22/2015

Yes, my favorite socks are Laurel Burch. Now I found the mugs I just have to choose which one to get first!

jptanabe on 01/22/2015

I know - I want one of those umbrellas!

Digby_Adams on 01/22/2015

Those socks would definitely cheer me up on a cold and snowy morning. I love the coffee cup as well.

WriterArtist on 01/21/2015

How art transforms simple pieces to extra-ordinary can be seen in Laurel Burch's craftsmanship. Love the artistic creations and the sparkling colours in the socks and the bags. She uses a lot of colors and the products are bright and stand out. One can see that on the umbrellas too.

ologsinquito on 01/21/2015

Her work really is beautiful. I'm a big fan.

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