The History of Ralph Lauren – the Man and the Brand

The History of Ralph Lauren – the Man and the Brand

Do you believe in the American Dream? Would you like to see the example of true rags-to-riches story with your own eyes? Then you should read the story of Ralph Lauren – both a man who took the world of streetwear by storm and the iconic fashion brand that shapes the industry today.

He literally started with rags that were actually his only two ties. In almost 50 years since that time, the brand boasts the most popular and exclusive Ralph Lauren men collections of streetwear for any occasion featuring billions of annual revenues. Ralph Lauren polo shirts have already turned into a fashion icon. Let’s get deep into details and find out how the most popular fashion brand was launched.

A Story of Jewish Kid

Hailing from a former Soviet country, Ralph Lauren was a very insecure kid. For the first time in his life, Ralph got a chance to get acquainted with the true fashion world during his studying at DeWitt Clinton High School. At this period, we started working as a seller in Alexander’s store chain that is still rather popular in the Big Apple. There he sold his designer hand-made ties.

After two years in the U.S. Army Laurent decided to enter Brooklyn’s Baruch College where he shared his selling business with other college students. It appeared to be the turning point in his career, as Ralph Lauren was hired as a salesman at Brooks Brothers.

In spite of good enough salary for that time, Ralph has always dreamt to sell his own clothes and neckwear in particular. The idea of creating his legendary Ralph Lauren polo shirts appeared a bit later. Working at Brooks Brothers appeared to be a problem as the store called for all his free time without the slightest chance to work on Ralph’s own collections. Later he started working at New York neckwear boutique, Beau Brummell where he got a chance to sell clothes directly from the showroom located inside the Empire State Building.

The Introduction of Ralph Polo Shirts

While working as a drawer at Beau Brummell during 1967, Ralph married and had three children. The same year he established his own brand that was doomed to success. Ralph Polo Shirts have always been synonymous with his fashion. However, the brand also offered Ralph Lauren women dresses and jackets. In only a few years, the company has grown into a well-established and recognizable fashion brand featuring some iconic pieces of streetwear for both men and women.

The company started expanding vastly highlighting annually growing sales. The first ever full Ralph Lauren fashion line was introduced in 1972. It had a great success while Ralph won a Coty Award. A few month later, he finally released his first ever long-sleeved coat with a polo pony embroidered on it. New collections also featured a full denim line, launching colognes, Ralph Lauren t-shirts, luxury labels and more.

Ralph Lauren Shops Today

Ralph Laure has never changed its location. The brand’s headquarters are still in the Big Apple with over 10, 000 employees working as drawers, designers, sale managers, etc. Almost 400 Ralph Lauren stores are located in different parts of the world. They generate over $2 billion of revenues every year. The success is overwhelming despite the fact that Ralph has never wanted to be in fashion. “Because if you’re in fashion, you’re going to be out of fashion.”

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