The youngest of four children, Ralph Lauren or Ralph Lifshitz, shared a room with his brothers while growing up in the Bronx, New York, in the 1940s and 1950s. At the age of 12, he worked after school to finance his extravagant taste in clothing and was known for selling handmade ties to his classmates at school; Little did he know that this would become the driving force of his business success.
I would spend teenage evenings at the movies dreaming of a better life. And this dream of fantasy and fiction was translated into the subsequent work of the designer who was influenced by actors such as Fred Astaire and Cary Grant. Michael Gross, author of the authentic Authentic biography: Ralph Lauren’s real-life says “that vision, that ability to enter a fantasy world, Ralph bought the fashion business”.
Ralph’s love for elegant style and the good life only rivaled his drive for success. And this determination to get away from the misfortune of his childhood was always present from an early age. The Daily Telegraph published an article in 1986 that “he doesn’t like to talk about his roots, but his outstanding ambition was discovered early: when asked to list his goals in the 1957 yearbook of De Witt Clinton High School, Ralph wrote: “millionaire.“
But after leaving the army in 1964, the designer worked as a sales clerk at Brooks Brothers. He married receptionist Ricky Low-Beer, who is still his wife, and moved to New York to live his American dream. It was not until 1967 that he began to design and make professional ties after having gained experience in fashion at Rivetz & Co. His innovative wide-tie designs made more than half a million dollars. And after the launch of his infamous Ralph Lauren polo in 1972, the designer transformed from a movie dreamer to a world fashion mogul.
It had taken him two decades to progress from his first low-paid job as a glove salesman to the billionaire state. Since then, the Ralph Lauren brand has exploded with more than 300 stores in the United States and another 100 worldwide. All collections feature the renowned American style of the brand, which combines easy-to-use pieces with luxurious materials and modern sets.
And Ralph’s children are following in their father’s footsteps. David Lauren, married to Lauren Bush (niece of former US President George W Bush) is the senior vice president of Polo Ralph Lauren. Andrew Lauren, on the other hand, is a singer and actor, and Dylan Lauren owns the famous Dylan’s chocolate bar in New York. His motto “we don’t sell an item, we sell a way of life” certainly proved a point. The living legend represents a dream, and it was a dream that certainly came true.
As the 122nd richest man in the world, the fashion designer resides in a luxury home on Fifth Avenue, New York. He also owns beach resorts in Jamaica and Montauk, Long Island and, despite his years of progress, remains a regular on the US social scene. UU.