It’s impossible to know the history of Ted Baker without studying the man behind the name. Raymond Stuart Kelvin was born in 1955 in North London. In 1988, at the age of 33, Kelvin opened his first clothing shop in Glasgow, and named it Ted Baker. The fledgling Ted Baker sold only men’s shirts at that time. Kelvin offered free dry cleaning for every shirt he sold. Unable to afford expensive advertising, Kelvin relied upon word of mouth for his store’s exposure.
Two years later, in 1990, Kelvin bought a store in Covent Garden, and by 1992 had stores in Soho, London, Leeds and Nottingham. It was at this time that Ted Baker became a privately owned company. As Ted Baker fashion grew in popularity, Kelvin saw fit to add a line of women’s clothing in 1995. Soon after, Teddy Boy was introduced—clothing for boys between the ages of five and twelve.
Kelvin took a back seat to the elusive Ted Baker, watching with amused fascination as Ted Baker fans fleshed in the fictitious character. Believed to be an adventurous, daring and dashing fellow, Ted Baker powerfully drives the allure for Kelvin’s creations.
Today Ted Baker stores have expanded to the United States, Hong Kong, Dubai, Australia and beyond. New lines of fashion include Teddy Girl, clothing for girls, Ted Baker Footwear, sunglasses and eyewear, perfumes, jeans and Born—a casual menswear collection. The history of Ted Baker is still in the making, with future plans for more stores, more product lines and more success.
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