After viewing his first polo match in New York, Lauren was inspired to quit his job as a clerk at Brooks Brothers and start his own company. He had no experience, and only a high school diploma and a few business classes on his résumé, but he won over Bloomingdale’s with his brazen attitude. Within one year, the designer sold $500,000 worth of ties at the department store. There is never a “right time.” If you have an idea, go for it and shock everyone with results.
Ralph’s first big break was with Bloomingdale’s—the hottest store around at the time.
They said they loved his neckties, but they wanted to take his name off the label and replace it with the Bloomingdale’s name. He said, no way, left the deal on the table and walked away.
Six months later, Bloomingdale’s came back. Turns out they DID want his neckties AND they’d keep his name on them!