I Wanna Be Tavi Gevinson When I Grow Up

How does Tavi Gevinson exist? At the ripe age of fifteen, she’s managed to captivate the fashion world with her blog, Style Rookie, and move into the arena of entertainment with her latest endeavor, Rookie. Originally conceived as a project with Jane Pratt, Tavi, perhaps wisely, decided to scrap the plans so she could retain full ownership over the project. Smart girl. GET THAT MONEY, HONEY.

What’s even more surprising about Tavi is her very grown up ideas about feminism. At a time when she should be becoming a total mean girl and hating herself, Tavi has promoted girl-on-girl friendships and actually written eloquent articles going against the traps many teenage girls fall into.

She’s managed to get the respect of the notoriously superficial fashion world as well as the feminist intellectuals, which is no small feat. Everyone loves Tavi. Everyone secretly wants to be Tavi. She’s a dream teen. She’s the precocious child you thought you were growing up, but are now second guessing. Sometimes it’s hard to believe she’s even real, that someone could be so smart about fashion, be such an amazing writer, and have such progressive ideas about gender at such a young age. Then again, maybe we’re not giving teenagers enough credit. Sometimes I forget that 14-year-olds can walk, talk, and have complex emotions. Tavi is an example of just how fully-formed and articulate you can be as an adolescent.

When I first heard of Style Rookie a few years ago, I was dismissive. I thought that it was gimmicky and ghostwritten by her parents. But now it’s hard to deny Tavi’s importance. She’s a breath of fresh air in new media, a prime example of something positive that came out of technology. Quite simply, she rOCkS. Can you imagine being someone in her ninth grade class though? It’s like, “Hi. I’m 15 and recently stopped peeing my pants. You have a profile in The New Yorker. Cool. Can I have a fruit snack?”

It will be interesting to see where Tavi goes from here. I can imagine her being over it when she’s 19 and moving to Alaska to knit and play with dogs. Or maybe she’ll be my boss. It’ll probably be the latter. TC mark

Image – The Style Rookie

Ryan O'Connell

I'm a brat.

Trace the scars life has left you. It will remind you that at one point, you fought for something. You believed.

“You are the only person who gets to decide if you are happy or not—do not put your happiness into the hands of other people. Do not make it contingent on their acceptance of you or their feelings for you. At the end of the day, it doesn’t matter if someone dislikes you or if someone doesn’t want to be with you. All that matters is that you are happy with the person you are becoming. All that matters is that you like yourself, that you are proud of what you are putting out into the world. You are in charge of your joy, of your worth. You get to be your own validation. Please don’t ever forget that.” — Bianca Sparacino

Excerpted from The Strength In Our Scars by Bianca Sparacino.

Read Here

More From Thought Catalog

  • beatniktoile

    I could not agree with this article more. 

  • beatniktoile

    I could not agree with this article more. 

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1363230138 Michael Koh

    I see her right now, seriously.

  • Anonymous

    I guess I’ll never understand how “intelligence” in the fashion world is a barometer of character and depth to to some folks. Like you said, its a superficial industry. The young lady does show so much promise, that’s why its so disappointing to see it going down the tubes of a painfully thin culture.

    • Amber

      While I think it’s true that the fashion industry can get unfortunately superficial, I believe it’s full of many real, intelligent artists who work their asses off to be successful. If Tavi loves and enjoys what she does, then I think it’s rather cruel to say she’s wasting her intelligence. Also, she’s only 15—there’s still plenty of time for her to grow up and develop new passions. She’s happy and she’s probably making a difference in thousands of young girls’ lives, I don’t see anything disappointing in that.  

      • macgyver51

        Well, let me make it clear. My beef is with the article, not the girl. As I said, she seems sharp. Ryan seems to make her a demigod, and thats pretty sad. She’s a kid. A kid you likes to dress like a hipster and go thrifting and whatnot. Apparently Ryan doesn’t know much about ninth graders. My wife and I teach and mentor, I know plenty that love thrifting. I know this because I loved and still do, and we go in packs. Guys and girls. I know more than a few that loved Salinger, both F&Z and Catcher. We’ve talked about it, not just what we wrote in the margins or what the stickers say, but the contents of the book itself. I know kids well enough to know that the myth of the “mean girls” is false. Most times the girls you think are “mean” are the most insecure around and crumble at the slightest breeze. There are plenty that believe in being a strong person and that all people deserve equal rights.

        Again, its not about Tavi not being something special. Its about a grown man treating her like she’s some sort of second coming of Fill in your hero here  and insinuating that her peers are more or less children that pee their pants. Sorry to disappoint you but there’s more to the current generation of kids than a well written fashion blog. 3 talented young women swept  Google’s Inaugural Science Fair, countless othersin my classes and around the world love literature and treat people right. Heck, my cousin just graduated college at 16, makes her own clothes, rock climbs, and regularly goes out to do charity work that she doesn’t want you to know about because that’s not what its about. She’d also be in favor of being impressed with Tavi but apprehensive and weirded out by the tone and direction of this article.

      • http://twitter.com/mung_beans 371747

        “I know kids well enough to know that the myth of the “mean girls” is false. ”

        No, it really fucking isn’t.  

      • macgyver51

        Just so you know, that misplaced anger will haunt you a good long time. Might want to go ahead and take care of it.

      • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=11708842 Vicky Hibbard

        No offense, sir. But have you ever been female? The “mean girl” group think mechanism is very much alive in our (American/Western Euro) society. It’s slowly being dismantled by the thoughts and actions of young women like your cousin and Tavi, but it’s a VERY slow process. We need to make sure that progress toward “girl/women love” does NOT backtrack, but spreads to females of all social, ethnic, and economic levels.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_EUL6B7WZUNAHGMO5KRCKZTGP54 Damen Handle

    I ran into her at a fashion show in Chicago. I got a picture with her. Worship me.

  • http://profiles.google.com/katiebk12 Katie Bennett

    Umm, yes. I wanna be Tavi too. 

  • Anonymous

    Does anyone know what happened with Jane Pratt? I WANT TO KNOW

    • http://www.wilfordlauren.tumblr.com Lauren Wilford

      She launched her own webzine, the pretty fabulous http://www.xojane.com/. She seems to be doing great. 

      • Anonymous

        Thanks. I mean between Jane and Tavi, though, since the original collaboration was to to relaunch Sassy.

      • http://www.wilfordlauren.tumblr.com Lauren Wilford

        Hmmmm.
        ““It wasn’t like Us versus the Man,” Gevinson said about the decision to not work with Say Media. “It was just that I want to have full control, and it’s important to me that we’re independent, not so that we can be indie and ‘down with the Man,’ but because I find a lot of comfort knowing that it’s all in my control.” She said there hasn’t been a falling out with Pratt.”http://www.wwd.com/media-news/digital/tavi-goes-out-on-her-own-5038800Tavi, you are like, all business. 

      • Anonymous

        Ahhh! She’s so politic and classy. Thanks for the link!

  • Rachel Butters Scotch

     I wish I could be more like her now, because my 14-year-old self just wouldn’t get the appeal. It’s cool to have confidence and be not entirely socially awkward.

  • http://www.facebook.com/people/Marlene-Cantu/584655022 Marlene Cantu

    i <3 her

  • Guest

    I still think Tavi is a fake. She’s not quite as smart in videos as she is in her blog. 

    • http://twitter.com/HipsterFriend HipsterFriend

      I hope when I write it reads as more articulate than when I speak, because I can’t put my thoughts into sensible speech that well. That’s a good portion of people.

      Anyway, this kid is pretty cool. My question is, can it last? Will she actually get the respect she deserves when she’s older, or are people more concerned with the novelty? We’ll find out. I hope it works out for her.

    • http://www.nosexcity.com NoSexCity

      To be fair, most people are more eloquent when writing than speaking.

    • Mads

      She’s real. I went to high school with her older sister. Her dad was the head of the English dept. It all makes sense, trust me.

  • Kswelch86

    Tavi is amazing! The spokesperson of anti-fashion, so comfortable in her 14-y. o. skin, solid feminist belief system, AND a Courtney Love fan to boot. Sometimes I think we were separated at birth, but she’s so much cooler than me b

  • http://www.wilfordlauren.tumblr.com Lauren Wilford

    I tweeted this exact sentiment yesterday. 

    “Think you’re doing pretty well for yourself, and then you’re like, crap, I’m not Tavi Gevinson. #ugh”

  • Maxwell Smart

    I think we should make #stillnottavi a trending topic.

    Example: “I’m 22 and have a salaried position at a major corporation. #stillnottavi” or “I’m 25 and I own my house. #stillnottavi”

  • Skyviz

    I love this girl. 

  • macgyver51

    Well, let me make it clear. My beef is with the article, not the girl. As I said, she seems sharp. Ryan seems to make her a demigod, and thats pretty sad. She’s a kid. A kid who likes to dress like a hipster, go thrifting, watch 80’s movies, read, and decorate her room in crazy ways and whatnot. Apparently Ryan doesn’t know much about ninth graders. My wife and I teach and mentor, I know plenty that love thrifting. I know this because I loved and still do, and we go in packs. Guys and girls. I know more than a few that loved Salinger, both F&Z and Catcher. We’ve talked about it, not just what we wrote in the margins or what the stickers say, but the contents of the book itself. I know kids well enough to know that the myth of the “mean girls” is false. Most times the girls you think are “mean” are the most insecure around and crumble at the slightest breeze. There are plenty that believe in being a strong person and that all people deserve equal rights.

    Again, its not about Tavi not being something special. Its about a grown man treating her like she’s some sort of second coming of Fill in your hero here  and insinuating that her peers are more or less children that pee their pants. Sorry to disappoint you but there’s more to the current generation of kids than a well written fashion blog. 3 talented young women swept  Google’s Inaugural Science Fair, countless othersin my classes and around the world love literature and treat people right. Heck, my cousin just graduated college at 16, makes her own clothes, rock climbs, and regularly goes out to do charity work that she doesn’t want you to know about because that’s not what its about. She’d also be in favor of being impressed with Tavi but apprehensive and weirded out by the tone and direction of this article.

  • Guest

    I agree she’s very cool, and so intelligent and articulate for a 14 year old, but I can’t help but feel a big part of her is so influenced by the internet, for example, her emerging feminism. That it seems sometimes expected or forced. Then again, all our actions must be influenced by something either way so…I don’t know where I’m going with this…

  • Vicky Shazam

    i love her as much as i love ryan o’connell, and that is a lot. so the fact that he wrote this about her makes me love this so much! and i emailed her this link.
    <3

blog comments powered by Disqus