Born in 1918, Higgs was brought up and educated in Wellington. At the time of World War II, she worked in Sydney as Head Designer for Silk and Textile Printers. She was injured in a car accident which resulted in the end of her textile designer career, but allowed her to begin her painting career. She became an integral part of the Wellington artistic community in the 1950’s and 1960’s. She received many awards, one of which was the 1964 National Bank award for watercolour.