Sunday Tribune

Tween Times

The coolest teenager in the world?

- CHARLOTTE PHILBY

TAVI Gevinson has been described as “an inspiratio­n” and “a poster child for her generation”. But she’s also a 13-year-old girl who has made her name taking photos of herself in her bedroom and posting them on the internet.

In March 2008, Tavi, then just 11-years-old, started an online diary inspired by her passion for fashion, under the alias “Style Rookie”. Ever since, this tiny kid from the suburbs of Chicago has spent the majority of her spare time dressing up in a series of bizarre get-ups, and uploading photos of her efforts for the world to see.

It’s a hobby that has already brought her celebrity – and today she has millions of followers around the world.

Those keeping track of Tavi’s progress over the past two years will have noticed that this is a girl who likes to talk, about everything. Her school play rehearsals: “Tech week … blah. That means not getting homework done and coming home late every night with 10 pounds of lipstick on, sweaty head to toe from those stage lights, blinding mascara lumps, and so much hairspray you don’t even feel your head touching the pillow.”

What Tavi likes to do more than anything else, though, is to add to her catalogue of self-portraits, taken with a simple camera. The first was accompanie­d by the following note: “Today I wore a skinny headband across my forehead. I also wore a black and white mini-dress with jagged flowers; green tights (H&M); my sister’s old green jacket; and a yellow polo I found in my closet that most likely used to be my sister’s. The headband was red, and I wore it in the style like this” – next to a picture of herself in this glorious creation.

Since then, Tavi has pictured herself in any number of weird and wonderful outfits. She has also continued to share her thoughts with her audience, both the bad: “My classmates called me a hippie. One kid said I should be ‘in a basement smoking a joint’. I try not let these things get under my skin, though”, and the good: “I’m getting a cellphone (yesss)”.

Now there is no stopping the numbers of people logging on to monitor her progress at tavi-thenewgirl­intown.blogspot.com

Today, Tavi has some four million regular readers, plus fans in high places. Tavi was a special guest in the front row at Marc Jacobs’s show at last month’s New York Fashion Week. She’s also given an interview to Vogue online. She’s been featured in the new issue of LOVE, the painfully cool fashion magazine and she’s now appeared on the cover of the equally cool Pop magazine – a privilege usually reserved for superstars like Madonna and Kate Moss.

Inside, there are 13 pages on Tavi, who is described by Dasha Zhukova, the magazine’s editor-in-chief, as “intelligen­t, fashion savvy, and one of the coolest 13-year-olds I’ve ever had the pleasure of meeting”. – The Independen­t

 ??  ?? Tavi, right and left, as she appeared in Pop magazine, and, in the centre, in one of her own creations.
Tavi, right and left, as she appeared in Pop magazine, and, in the centre, in one of her own creations.
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