Are the letters YKK printed on your zipper?

I LOVE fun facts about things…especially every day things that we don’t really pay much attention to. Here’s some zipper history for you! Enjoy!

If you look at any jacket or pants zipper, there’s a good chance it has the tiny letters “YKK” on it. Those initials are stamped on 7 billion zippers every year. YKK stands for Yoshida Kogyo Kabushikigaish, a Japanese manufacturing company.

The business was founded in 1934 by Tadao Yoshida, who quickly transformed his small zipper company into a international zipper behemoth. Zippers were only invented 100 years ago, by a Swedish-American named Gideon Sundback, His patent for the “separable fastener” was issued in 1917 (see patent diagram below), while he was working for the Universal Fastener Company. Sundback also created a manufacturing machine for his zipping device.

Zipper Diagram

The name “zipper” wasn’t coined until 1923 by B.F. Goodrich, whose company used the Sundback fastener on their boots. The Universal Fastener Company switched its name to Talon, and began mass producing zippers. By 1930 they were selling 20 million a year, and by the end of WWII over 500 million a year.

But back to the story of YKK. Yoshida, seeing the exploding popularity of zippers, decided to open his own zipper company. He basically copied the product and machines used by Talon, but added a few of his own touches. Slowly, Yoshida brought every part of the zipper creation process in house. Including smelting the brass, weaving the cloth, molding the zipper teeth, and even making the boxes the zippers are shipped in. Yoshida believed in the philosophy of “The Cycle of Goodness,” which holds “no one prospers unless he renders benefit to others.” This ideal drove Yoshida to produce the highest quality product he could at the lowest cost.

Which is exactly why YKK zippers became–and are still today–the most dependable zippers on the market. And dependability is the name of the game in the world of zippers. Fashion designers can’t have a zipper causing their high end garment to fail. For the typical fashion garment that costs around $50 to manufacture, and that will sell for over three times that price, designers are happy to pay 32¢ for a YKK zipper they know won’t break. Multiply 7 billion times 32¢ and you’ll see why YKK is likely to be printed on your zippers for the foreseeable future.


Original Article found on

2 Replies to “Are the letters YKK printed on your zipper?”

Leave a Reply

WEB DESIGN, GRAPHIC DESIGN, WEB HOSTING kimtown offers Website Design, Splash Page Design, Shopping Cart Design, E-commerce Design, Blog Design, Web Hosting, for all kinds of small, medium and large sized businesses. Designs for Photographers, designs for Artists, designs for Seamstresses, designs for Builders, designs for Architects and so much more! Logo Design, Business Card Design, Brochure Design, Mailing Designs and any other print media work you need. Social media design, branding, sublimation design, custom embroidery digitizing and design for all business types out of Jacksonville Florida but serving the United States and most countries, worldwide. 

Join my list:

Don’t miss a thing! Sign up here!

DISCLAIMER: kimtown participates in affiliate marketing and may receive commissions when you click our links and purchase from them. This does not cost you extra and does not, in any way, change or impact our reviews and recommendations. We use these small commissions to help keep much of our content free. kimtown offers a wide variety of services including web design, splash pages, blogs, blog+sites, client sites, machform, facebook design and customization, client site login customization for photographers and small businesses.
HTML Websites for Photographers, Web Design, Splash Pages, Wordpress Blogs, Splash Page Design + Commercial Photography. kimtown Web Site Design, Custom HTML Sites, Web Design, Splash Pages, Forums, Blog Design, Installation, Blog Headers, Splash Page Editor. kimtown offers custom and template splash page design to clients around the world.

© 2006-2021 kimtown | All rights reserved.

Add to cart
%d bloggers like this: