John Charles Galliano was born in Gibraltar in 1960 to strict Roman-Catholic parents. His father, a Spanish plumber, his mother and his two sisters moved to England in 1966. The family were based in the Southeast of London.
Galliano attended Wilson's Grammar School in London before he went on to study fashion design at Central Saint Martins College of Art and Design. he graduated with first class honors and his first collection, Les Incroyables, which was inspired by the French Revolution, was an instant hit and was bought by the London fashion boutique Browns.