It was started by Bert and John Jacobs in 1989. While living out of their van, they started hawking tee shirts in the street in Boston and along the East Coast in college dormitories.
They worked hard and had good times but they didn’t make much money. They continued their journey knowing they had to come up with better branding.
Five years later, they put their original Jake drawing on a tee shirt and printed 48 of them; with the tagline Life is good. At the Cambridge Street Fair, September 1994, they put the tee shirts on an old card table and sold all 48 by noon. Jake was an instant star!
The tee shirts were then sold to retailers. The message of optimism was embraced and demand for the product was huge. The brand is about simplicity, humor and humility.