“When the universe began your soul split and you had a twin. Everyone has a twin flame but they don’t get to hang with one another unless they have something really sacred to do."
Judith Leiber (nee Peto) was born in 1921 Budapest, Hungary. Her early plans to pursue a career in cosmetics chemistry were derailed by growing fascism in Europe; amidst brewing war, she returned from Kings College London to Budapest, enrolled in an artisan program still accepting Jews, and mastered the craft of handbag design (she often said Hitler made her a handbag designer). After liberation by the Red Army Leiber’s family moved into a basement with sixty other people.
Around that time Judith met Gus (Gerson Leiber), an American abstract expressionist and sergeant in the US Army Signal Corps. She was making handbags for secretaries of the American Legation, he was working as a radio operator maintaining post-war contact between Vienna and Budapest. They soon married and moved to New York City, working as artist and artisan. In 1963 they opened their own handbag business in a small loft: Judith designed and oversaw manufacturing and her husband tended business aspects of the venture. “I knew from the beginning what I wanted to do,” she said, “I wanted to make the best.”
Her sensuous, tactile, and often hilarious minaudieres are world-renown and earned her unprecedented acclaim. They are accessories of choice for first ladies, movie stars, and socialites. His work as a painter, lithographer, and sculptor was exhibited internationally at over 200 shows and is on permanent display at the Metropolitan Museum of Art, The Smithsonian, and the Brooklyn Museum. They sold their business for an estimated sixteen million dollars in 1993; more recently, they mounted joint exhibitions on Long Island and Manhattan. The Leiber's entrepreneurism and passion for beauty have left an indelible mark on 20th and 21st Century design.
Judith and Gus Leiber died within hours of each other last weekend at their home in Springs, New York. They were married 72 years. They are buried together. This is a story of Twin Flames.
NOTE: quote describing Twin Flames is taken from an interview used to research Date* in 2011.