Nov 02, 2011 12:00AM

Evolution of a Style Rookie

Tavi's doing away with the "Grandma on ecstacy".

Tavi Gevinson, a teenager from the suburbs of Chicago, began her Style Rookie blog in March 2008, at the tender age of eleven. She has described herself as "a dork that sits inside all day wearing awkward jackets and pretty hats" and now, aged 15, she's diversified by starting a collaborative website and online magazine for teenage girls: Rookie. Rookie tries to look at everything through a feminist lens, and this month's theme is 'Girl Gang', taking inspiration from all the nuances of friendship that are so specific to girls well, the tagline is "Togetherness! Rivalry! Bracelets!" Think Powerpuff Girls meets Jawbreaker meets Mean Girls. As Editor-in-Chief, Tavi is not interested in preaching: "As a teenager, when something really sucks, when there is a way to make a link from the political aspect of feminism to the personal aspect that's way more helpful than being preached to. Comedy is very effective, we have lots of satire pieces, a recent one satirised diets in women's magazines and another was dating tips from a middle school boy."

Tavi's own style has garnered attention from Vogue Italia, Teen Vogue and the New York Times, inspired Rodarte's Target collection and made her a muse for some of Tokyo's top designers. The super smart 15-year-old says she is staying true to her roots but also letting herself grow up. "I used to dress weirder and I know that's why a lot of people liked me, but I also know people liked that I was honest, even about being insecure, which is why I don't feel too bad or like I'm not being myself now that I dress more conventionally. Part of it is that my tastes have changed and part of it is that it was so much easier, to be like 'screw what people think' when I was 12. I revisit the 'grandma on ecstasy' now and then, but it would be harder to get these ideas about feminism out there in a fashion context because then you just become this weirdo who people block out. I don't think you have to succumb to that, but if you want people to listen to you, it's the reality and it sucks, but you have to do it."

Whether your a teenage girl or not, Rookie will make you feel like you are (although unfortunately it won't make you look like one).

Some of our favourite Tavi shots, old and new:

And here's some suggestions for what she could try next: