From a very young age, D’Ana Smith always had the dreams of being a designer and immersed herself in the creative arts. Even though she studied dance and theater in high school, she always found herself volunteering in the costume design apartment. Fast forward to college, Smith landed several internships in the fashion industry, and, in her junior year, she decided to conceptualize her first clothing company; Purpose Denim which she later launched at the age of 21.
But ultimately, after years of college and grad school, Smith found herself numb to the normal expectations of falling in line. With some self-reflection and a spark of confidence; Fourth Period was born as a reminder of simpler times sitting in 4th period math class when she dreamed of things far greater than the norm.
Smith says she founded this brand to emphasize the idea that creativity is just as important as education. She hopes that her brand will empower young entrepreneurs and creatives to believe in themselves and take the first step of working towards their dreams.
As for what’s popular in the line, Smith notes that in 2020, the brand launched a collection of hand-dyed crewnecks, and needless to say, due to the pandemic these were hand-dyed as in hand-dyed in her mom’s kitchen. The items almost sold out within half an hour.
Another standout was Fourth Period’s social justice collection which consisted of an 8:46 shirt dedicated to George Floyd and a #justiceforbre shirt which was dedicated to the tragic loss of Breonna Taylor. “This collection really speaks to Fourth Period’s customer base,” she says. “We have a following of customers who are interested in the quality and passion that is put behind each product but also the greater impact we are trying to create with this brand.”
The brand offers accessories that start as low as $20 with items going up to as much as $85 for its more custom pieces. Its latest collections featured a range of t-shirts, hoodies, crewnecks, and facemasks dedicated to encouraging creatives, entrepreneurs, and dreamers to not care what others think and be authentic and true to themselves. Other recent drops included capsules honoring Black History Month as well as Women’s History Month.