Barbara was born on and spent her early years on the Lower East Side of Manhattan, and her family moved to Queens when she was in her early teens. She was a graduate of the Art program at Washington Irving High School when it was the only professional / technical school for girls in the city. She was a member of the Art Students League for some time, after which she began raising a family.
She was known for her generosity with her time and many varied talents, for her good taste and sense of style, and for being unpretentious and direct.
She is survived by her children Linda, Wendy and Keith; grandchildren Sean, Heather, Mark, Luke, David and Matthew. She was the great-grandmother of eight.
She is also survived by her brother Thomas, and a rescued stray named John whose life she saved more than once.