In a recent interview, designer Ralph Lauren was asked if he knew about Kanye West’s now infamous “It ain’t Ralph, though!” quote from an interview with Sway Calloway. It doesn’t seem like it, but Lauren was familiar with Yeezy
In an interview with Style.com, the Polo Ralph Lauren founder stopped short of saying he was familiar with the quote, but he did acknowledge the “Stronger” rapper’s taste in fashion.
DS: I don’t know if you heard this, but there was a famous radio interview that Kanye West did. He was talking about this clothing line that the host of the show owned, and he said, “It ain’t Ralph, though.” The idea being, it’s not Ralph Lauren level, that Ralph is now a byword for a certain …
RL: Oh. [ laughs] So an adjective. It’s very Ralph.
DS: It ain’t Ralph level.
RL: That’s very cool. Well, that’s great. If I were to cater to Kanye, he would know that I’m catering to him. The fact that I make what I make—he gets it. He gets the quality and he respects it. And I think that’s the key, why I work all the time is to do that. That’s the fun.
But we already know that, though.
Lauren also spoke on why he shuttered Rugby. Turns out it’s a case of consumers not appreciating it until it was gone, among other reasons.
DS: Can I just ask why you closed the Rugby stores? I personally loved what you were doing there. Why did you feel it wasn’t working?
RL: The problem is that when I decided to do Rugby, which was considerably before you started to see it, Rugby was much younger than Polo and it was a “son” of Polo. The Polo guy was getting more sophisticated, a little older, and he’d go in and shop with his son. But as I made Rugby better and better, it started to look more like Polo. And so I said, “Why should I do this? Let me go focus in on Polo and add what I think the Rugby thing had said,” which were some younger things. A lot of people ask me about Rugby. People come in my store and say, “I want Rugby!” When you don’t do something anymore, all of a sudden everyone treasures it.
That’s one of the reasons why the Polo resale market is thriving. Now that is Ralph, tho.