We imagine everyone around Danielle LaPenta Bostick asks, “How does she do it?” The mother of two (sweet-as-could-be) little girls, Aria and Savannah, is also the force behind fourth+pierce, a line of handcrafted leather hair accessories. The pieces are sustainable, ethical, affordable and come from the heart of a (sweet-as-could-be) woman. We chatted with Danielle about how she balances it all – sometimes literally balancing a baby on her lap.
Tell us about fourth+pierce’s beginning – when and why did you decide to start the company? And what’s the meaning behind the name?
I started fourth+pierce in 2014, under a different brand name and rebranded soon after. I was pregnant with my first daughter, at the time I didn't even know she was a girl, but I was hopeful and wanted to make some bows that fit our style.
Your accessories are sustainable and ethically made. What does this mean, exactly, as it applies to your products and the materials used to make them?
fourth+pierce's latest collection was created with nature in mind. Tanned in the famous leatherstocking region of central New York, this season's collection of North American Whitetail Deerskin is the most environmentally friendly leather on earth. All leather found in fourth+pierce's shop has been made with only "reach" certified products from the top brands in the industry. Collected and gathered from a cottage type industry, our hides are from deer that were harvested for conservation purposes, to protect the health of the species. This practice supports and aids the communities around the United States by paying the small butchers and meat processors throughout the countryside.
How do you incorporate what you know about sustainable materials and ethically-made products into other things you buy – for your home, for your kids, for your own wardrobe?
Besides fourth+pierce, I'm also pretty passionate about what we put in and on our bodies. From the meat we eat, to body care, to clothing I buy for our girls, I try to make the best decision for their and our overall health. As far as clothing, I try to fill their wardrobe with less flashy junk and more sustainable functional pieces that can be mixed and matched together. I also try to purchase from small businesses like my own, versus big box stores.
Your designs are equally elegant and playful. What was the initial design process like and how did you land on your signature look?
My husband watches a lot of old movies, and actually a few new pieces from this season were inspired from an old foreign film he was watching. It's funny, the places you least expect may provide you with the most inspiration. As far as creating the bows, it's a lot of trial and error. Once I have a prototype I either send it out to have it tested or test it on my own daughters. Then tweak what is necessary.
You recently welcomed a new baby into your family – congratulations! What’s your favorite part of the day with your two little girls?
Thank you! I would say the days we sleep in and skip 6am CrossFit. ;) It's great to have those slow mornings with each other.
As a working mother with her own business, how do you attempt to find balance in your life?
It's tough, there's no clocking in and out at work. Some days Aria just wants to skip her nap and be held, but I absolutely have to get work done, so I put her in the Solly wrap and wear her while I'm working. You just figure out what works best over time.
You’re based in Chicago. What do you find most inspiring about where you live?
I would have to say my family and close friends. They are all such hard workers and most run their own businesses as well. It's definitely takes a strong-willed person to do so. I think we all look up to each and inspire each other along the way.
What’s your workspace like? Do you have any rituals while designing – music, time of day, coffee?
I currently work out of my home. My husband built me a custom wood floating desk so I can stand, instead of sit while I am working. I typically work seven days a week in the early afternoon. I listen to "easy tv" as I call it. Something I can follow along with just by listening since I can't keep my eyes on the screen.
You just released your new spring/summer collection. What pieces are you most excited about?
Oh gosh, this season was really exciting for me. We worked with some amazing people in New York to have all our leather custom dyed. So that was exciting in itself. I'm really thrilled about the Charlotte bow. It's definitely up there in my all-time favorites. We also have a small version on a headband in our new infant collection, which looks super sweet on babies.