Zandra Rhodes was born in Chatham, Kent, UK in 1940. Her mother was a fitter for the House of Worth in pairs, giving Zandra a leg up in the workings of the fashion industry. Zandra studied print textile design at Medway College and then at The Royal College of Art in London. Early on her designs were considered too far out to be used in mainstream textile manufacturing, so she began designing dresses from her fabrics. In 1967 she opened her first shop in London with Sylvia Ayton called The Fulham Road Clothes Shop. In 1969 she took off on her own, coming to the USA selling to Henri Bendel in NY. In the UK, Zandra was also given her own area in Fortnum and Mason, London. In 1975 she founded her own shop off Bond Street London.