Today we’d like to introduce you to D’Ana Smith.
D’Ana, please share your story with us. How did you get to where you are today?
I have always grown up an extremely creative person, starting dance at age two to acting in plays, singing, designing, and any form of creativity I could get my hands on. After years of dedicating myself to the arts I decided to take it one step further by attending Las Vegas Academy of the arts. Pace throughout those four years of high school I felt that I was able to not only grow as a person but really see the impact that one person can make on the world. After that I went on to receive my bachelor’s degree in Communication studies and a minor in dance from Loyola Marymount University, I spent most of my time there dedicating myself to community service of all kinds, as well as leading my sorority Alpha Phi as the first African-American president the chapter has had. I went into college and spent the majority of college studying to become a sports agent.
I took these plans one step further and decided to get my Masters degree in PR with an emphasis on sports PR. It was a few semesters into my program at USC that I realized there was something greater that I wanted for myself. I believe that education is one of the must valuable things we are gifted with but the structure of educational institution can be quite damaging to a creative spirit. This is something that I dealt with greatly while at USC. As a result of my desire to go left when Society is telling all students to go right, I created FOURTH PERIOD, a streetwear brand founded upon the importance of creative and innovative thinking in a society that promotes the opposite.
Has it been a smooth road?
There have been many struggles, whether it be the ones I faced while leading my sorority, making the decision to not pursue a career in which I had initially dreamed of, obstacles with friendships, and the struggle of simply trying to do something different. But the greatest struggle of all comes from when we decide to let those outside influences impede upon our self-worth, I believe that each of us was given a purpose, and it’s our job to chase that Purpose every single day. So whether someone tells me they don’t like my idea, they don’t understand, or people who simply doubt my abilities, it’s my purpose and my passion for what I’m doing that pushes me.
So let’s switch gears a bit and go into the Fourth Period story. Tell us more about the business.
FOURTH PERIOD is a Los Angeles-based streetwear brand that focuses on the importance of formal education as one of many skills but not your only asset. After years of college and Grad School I found myself numb to the normal expectations of falling in line. Questions from professors like who do you want to work for? who is your dream boss? and never questions of who do you want to be? What impact do you want to have? What is your dream? Students going around the room boasting of the companies they worked for, I felt shame in saying I work for myself. 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 I dreamed of things far greater than the norm. This brand exists to empower a culture of creativity and innovation in a world that only promotes the linear. The greatest lessons are beyond the classroom and beyond what’s ingrained in our flawed history, FOURTH PERIOD is the permission to believe in yourself and your Dreams, and it’s the permission and the confidence to be who you want to be, and not what society has told you to be! It’s permission to be the shit.
We are different from other streetwear brands, as all of our items are unisex. I also believe in size inclusiveness offering clothes from extra small to 3xl. I am proud to offer something for everyone in fourth period, whether you want to wear baggy sweatpants or a fitted top, or maybe you just want to wear a hoodie and fresh sneakers. I pride myself in FOURTH PERIOD being a brand for everybody, as I believe everybody should feel the confidence to think freely and creatively without inhibition.
How do you think the industry will change over the next decade?
I think that streetwear is rapidly expanding, and becoming much more palatable to a wider audience is. I’m noticing a lot of shifted within the space as it is becoming the normalized trend of fashion today. A lot of women are starting to take our place within this industry, and I think it’s incredibly empowering to have diversity within the field of fashion that is supposed to be for everyone. I think at the corner of streetwear is built upon expression, it’s built for the culture, and it’s a form of voicing your opinion and I hope that as this industry continues to expand it continues to start true to its foundation at the same time and becomes much more palatable to wider audiences.
- Sweatshirts $52
- Hoodies $55.67
- Sweatpants $45.99
- T-shirts $29.67
- Website: Shop4thperiod.com
- Email: info@Shop4thperiod.com
- Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/4thprd/?hl=en
- Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/4THPRD/