Ansley was the daughter of W. J. and Agnes Robertson Syx and attended Ensley High School, serving as the school's first female student body president. After a special summer session at Northwestern University in Chicago, Illinois, she went to Birmingham-Southern College, then transferred to the University of Alabama.
After graduating, she helped Agnes Harris and Henrietta Thompson establishing the college's School of Interior Design. She founded Ruby Ansley Interiors in Mountain Brook Village in 1963 and soon hired associate Sallie Aman, who stayed with her to her death in 2012.
Ansley was a founding member of the Alabama Chapter of the American Design Institute of Decorators. She and her husband, John, were members of the Shoal Creek Country Club and supporters of Birmingham-Southern and other charities.
- "Ruby Syx Ansley" obituary (January 3, 2012) The Birmingham News