Beatrix Potter was a talented watercolourist, particularly of the natural world, from an early age and her paintings and drawings are now in collections, both private and public, all over the world.

Watercolour of ‘Sheep’, painted by Beatrix Potter, 1876 / The Beatrix Potter Society

Beatrix Potter The Artist Early years

As was the custom in families of her class, Beatrix Potter was educated at home by several governesses. An eager student of languages and literature, she grew up loving classic folk and fairy tales, rhymes and riddles. Her talent for drawing and painting was discovered early and encouraged. During her childhood and adolescence Beatrix received art lessons of various sorts. Beatrix Potter drew her own versions of such stories as Cinderella, Sleeping Beauty, and Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland.

Beatrix Potter also wrote imaginatively about her pets. She and Bertram kept a number of much-loved and intensely observed animals in their schoolroom. In addition to rabbits, a hedgehog, some mice and bats, they had collections of insects. All were drawn with the same accuracy that would later mark Beatrix Potter as a distinguished naturalist.

Watercolours by Beatrix Potter

Beatrix Potter made beautiful watercolours of landscapes and places, and of wildlife and flowers.

William Heelis introduced Beatrix Potter to the Armitt Library, Ambleside, of which he was an early Trustee. The Armitt concentrated on local history, art and literature. Beatrix felt it was a suitable place to hold her watercolours of fungi and mosses, the microscope studies and the watercolours of Roman artefacts and bequeathed them to the Library before she died. She also gave the Library a selection of books, including some rare volumes.

Armitt watercolour of fungi / The Armitt Collection

Beatrix Potter Society collection

The Beatrix Potter Society is the lucky possessor of letters and personal items – like Beatrix’s walking stick and her collector’s cabinet – as well as several pieces of artwork and first edition little books. Most items are on long term loan to the National Trust or the V&A, where an appointment can be made to view them, and the collection has been built up through both donations and purchases.

Our Collection

Greetings Cards

These unique cards, specially made by The Beatrix Potter Society, showing artworks by Beatrix Potter, are ideal items to send to your friends and family and so support the work of the Society.

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Publications

These books supply more information about the art, interests and writing of Beatrix Potter.

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Membership

If you want to know more about Beatrix Potter, you are more than welcome to join The Beatrix Potter Society. We welcome new Members worldwide.

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