The Life Is Good Company is an American apparel and accessories wholesaler, retailer, and lifestyle brand founded in 1994 and best known for its optimistic T-shirts and hats, many of which feature a smiling stick figure named Jake and the registered trademark "Life is good." In 1989 brothers Bert and John Jacobs designed their first T-shirts. They began selling their designs in the streets of Boston and out of an old van at colleges and street fairs along the East Coast of the United States. In 1994, following a not-so-successful road trip, they returned to Boston, unsure of the future of their business. It was their common practice to gather friends at their apartment following such trips to share stories and to ask their friends to comment on drawings and sayings posted on their living room walls. On this occasion, one drawing received considerable favorable attention from their friends — the head of a beret-wearing, smiling stick figure and the phrase "Life is good." The brothers named the character Jake and printed up 48 shirts bearing a smiling Jake and the words "Life is good." At a street fair in Cambridge, Massachusetts, the shirts sold out in less than an hour. The brothers began to sell T-shirts and hats featuring Jake in local stores. Demand for the merchandise grew quickly, as did national recognition of the brand.
Life is Good expanded its product lines from T-shirts and caps in the early years to a full line of apparel for men, women, and children, as well as an increasing number of accessories categories. They offer over 900 different items in 14 categories. Products are sold online via the company's Web site, in approximately 4500 retail stores in the United States, and in 30 countries. Life is Good products are sold in approximately 4,500 retail stores throughout the United States and Canada. The brand is distributed through multiple customer channels.