During the coronavirus pandemic, the Mediocre Originality Demands Expression, or MODE, Apparel was established by a Florida A&M University student and entrepreneur, Deron Smith Jr.
Smith was a fashion influencer at an early age. From always drawing clothes, logo names, and putting together different fashion pieces, he decided to finally create his brand.
Today, Smith’s sense of style is his inspiration for being a fashion designer and business owner. His sense of style is the concept behind MODE Apparel.
“It hasn’t been a smooth road whatsoever but it’s been worth it. I used to think that everything would be easy, but I realized there’s a science behind it,” Smith said. “For example, you have to study different materials for your clothes and be on the hunt for the best vendor if you plan to use one. What motivates me is my support system because they push me to put my best foot forward and will always let my creativity run through me.”
Other than working all day and night on his clothing brand, he has also created his logo and is in the process of working on his official website for his summer launch.
Darion Holloway, a senior pre-occupational therapy student at FAMU, has been a supporter of Smith’s brand since day one.
“I am excited about MODE Apparel and what the creator has in store. He has been working on his brand for a long time and I’m excited about his release. My first purchase will be a shirt or a hoodie, but from all the mind-blowing designs he has in store for his brand there is no telling, I might buy the whole store,” Holloway said.
Holloway has high expectations for Smith’s brand.
“I don’t have many expectations about MODE because there is no ceiling, but I would not be surprised if you see it featured or headlining a fashion week. The creator just has the eye for fashion,” he said.
Although Smith is still a full-time physical therapy student at FAMU, he plans to release a lot of heat for purchase throughout the school year.
Tariq Atkins, a senior business administration student, said it is thrilling to see his friend pursue his dreams.
“I’m most proud of his hard work and dedication. From the day I met Deron, he had a love for fashion— particularly urban wear and I’m glad that he is finally able to bring a dream of his into fruition,” Atkins said.
Smith said he hopes all the hard work will pay off.
“I believe that if I pursued my dreams a while back, I would have been a millionaire by now. I just want everyone to understand the meaning behind my brand and why I started it,” Smith said.
Even though Smith’s clothing line hasn’t been released yet, people have placed pre-orders leaving MODE almost sold out.
“Due to the amount of work I put in daily, all I can do is continue to promote myself as much as possible and never expect things to be perfect but learn how to shake back from the flaws so I can prosper,” Smith said.
For more information, you can visit the MODE Instagram profile @1modeapparel or email Smith at