Sir Paul Smith used to be a licensed taxi driver for almost three decades, but ''only'' on the weekends, and the star has revealed he had different jobs because he simply wanted to earn money.
Sir Paul Smith used to be a licensed taxi driver.
The 71-year-old designer set up his eponymous label in 1970, but he has admitted he has also had a very different career as he has completed ''The Knowledge'', which is thorough training drivers undertake to get their licence, and worked as a taxi driver for ''25 years'' but ''only'' on the weekends.
Speaking about his other jobs to Esquire Online, the creative mastermind said: ''Of course, when I did 'The Knowledge'... I was a taxi driver for 25 years -- but only at the weekend.''
But before Paul became a notable figure in the fashion business he had dreamed of being a professional racing cyclist until he suffered a major accident.
He added: ''Well, I did anything that came along to earn money, which I think has given me the skill of doing lots of things. I was a racing cyclist from the age of 12 to 18 and you learn that you do have a competitive spirit and you learn about teamwork, which has helped me enormously having 180 people in this building. I don't think I'm really competitive but I do have a survival instinct, which is, 'Well, we'll just work it out then.'''
But Paul believes his label is ''very solid'' and has withstood a number of difficulties over time.
Speaking about his brand, the businessman said: ''I had my business when there was the coal miners' strike in the Eighties and the three-day week, when you had to have a generator for the rest of the week. And I managed to always do well through these things. So, we're not going anywhere incidentally, we're very solid, it's just you're witnessing a time which is different to what you've witnessed before.''
And Paul has credited himself as a ''pioneer'' in the industry as he introduced additional products to his company, which encouraged other brands to follow suit.
He said: ''The owners of both Colette in Paris and 10 Corso Como in Milan have both independently said that our way of running a shop was the influence for their shops, which was having not just clothes. So I suppose, without realising it, I was the absolute pioneer of all that, really.''
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