Monday, September 1, 2014

Women We Love: Tavi Gevinson

Presenting Tavi Gevinson

Tavi Gevinson— the geeky little blogger girl I was sure must be an impossible brat— is growing up. Turns out she was never a brat at all, just amazingly intelligent and precocious.

You may remember her as this child who showed up at Fashion Week wearing outlandish get-ups and a blank expression. I knew she had a blog. But would I stoop to read it? Then I heard she had an online magazine for teens called "Rookie". Did I bother to take a look? Then I saw her in the film, "Enough Said" and was bowled over. In a movie that seemed to be trying a little too hard, she was genuine and real.

Tavi, girl blogger

Tavi Gevinson is 18 now. She stills looks— sans makeup— like a little kid, but seeing her yesterday on "CBS Sunday Morning" was meeting a young woman who has her ducks in a row and a star-bright future ahead. She is leaving her home in Chicago and is off to Broadway to appear in "This is Our Youth", the Broadway premiere of a 1996 off-Broadway production. She co-stars with Michael Cera and Kieran Culkin.

When asked if she was trying to make a statement with her wacky clothing choices back then, she said, no, she was trying to show she didn't care what people thought and wanted to dress that way for her. I then remembered I once did the same, though not with the notoriety or effect that Tavi had.

In 1956 Glamour declared the new musical "My Fair Lady" was the fashion influence of the year. Their September issue was full of somewhat romanticized clothing dubbed The My Fair Lady Look. Broadway and Glamour both spoke to me, and I took this to heart. I was 14.

Glamour, September 1956

I sewed myself a pink cotton sateen blouse and a full navy skirt, hemmed to mid-calf. I wore the blouse unbuttoned to there (no cleavage existed to worry the censors) and stuck a pink artificial rose down the front. Picture that please with bobby socks and saddle shoes, a face full of acne, a mouth full of braces, glasses and two strange pin curls that were my "romantic sideburns". I thought I looked fabulous. I knew I didn't look like anyone else, but that wasn't the point. I had achieved my own Fair Lady effect, and that was enough. I can't be too embarrassed by the memory of that because I wasn't embarrassed at the time.

Tavi is a beautiful young woman now. She will undoubtedly need to make wise fashion choices that suit her age and style. She'll be someone to watch without doubt. I hope there are hours enough in the day and night for her to do it all.

Tavi, cover girl, August 2014

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