the day Heidi Bartruff's Father introduced her to a neighborhood puppy
when she was only 3 years old, she was completely smitten for life.
As she grew up in Los Angeles, CA, she displayed an inherent artistic
ability which won her several awards throughout her school years.
But it wasn't until her own children
were born that she discovered her niche'. Desiring to make her daughter
a special plush animal on her third birthday, Heidi taught herself
to sew and then combined her artistic skills with her love and knowledge
of animal conformation. The results have delighted her family, friends
and toy manufacturers for the past 14 years.
Heidi went on to design "Toto"
for The Franklin Mint's porcelain Dorothy doll and she is the original
inventor of the line of small, magnet-filled toys called"Magneatoes"
which have been manufactured and sold successfully world wide by the
Mary Meyer Toy Co. for several years .
Heidi says: "I enjoy creating
sweeter-than-life, soft, cuddly, tangible creations that bring comfort
and smiles to my customers... to somehow make magic seem possible
during such sad or tense times as we are experiencing tends to bring
hope and joy as the old fairy tales do... I guess my artworks give
me those comforts while I am designing them so it's really as much
a therapy for me as for the client!"
studio is nestled in the tall pines of the southern California mountains
where the beauty of serene nature and wildlife surround and inspire
Heidi's Plush Animal Replicas were
recently featured on the NBC Today Show. Her first Illustrated Children's
Book — "The Wish" — won the DOVE organization's
highest rating and has won the Mom's Choice Award in 2010.