When I grow up, I want to be Tavi Gevinson.

Fashion blogger and feminist extraodinaire Tavi Gevinson is my hero. She dyed her hair gray (well, sort of by accident, but still) when she was only 13, and may I just say: Pulling. It. Off. She’s respected across the fashion industry by the likes of Agyness Deyn and the Prada-wearing devil, herself, but this pint-sized style savant is also a proud feminist and steering her role in the media in a more political direction than straightforward fashion coverage.

At only 15-years-old, she’s editor-in-chief of a teen girls’ magazine (only online, so far) that she launched this year called The Rookie that is sort of Ms. Magazine meets Nylon. The Rookie’s tone says that it’s OK to be a quirky, imaginative girl. Insecurities are normal and something you grow out of. Being smart is cool. That sort of thing.

The third and latest issue looks at the theme ‘Girl Gang’, which entails everything from Greece‘s Sandra D (granted, not exactly a feminist icon), girl bands, Powder Puff Girls(I don’t even really know what that is – I’m too old for this sh*t) and the Golden Girls. The magazine is a mix of cutesy teenage stuff and more serious pieces like the one titled First Encounters with the Male Gaze, in which she writes about being frustrated by the sudden onslaught of men’s eye-pawing that comes with adolescence. She writes: “I want them to know that I don’t exist for them to look at, I don’t get dressed for them, and however I have put myself together on this day—it is not for you. Most of all, I want to be able to walk around my neighborhood and school without its being assumed that I am looking for feedback on my figure.”

There are things on the site that could use some editing, but given that there are people on The Rookie’s staff who are over the legal drinking age and should know better than to leave some of that sloppy writing in there, I almost wonder if it’s left in intentionally to tell readers that she really is doing the job of EIC.

A recent post includes a video of the three comediennes starlets from the most awesome sitcom on the current primetime roster, Parks and Recreation. The video features Amy Poehler, Rashida Jones and Aubrey Plaza sampling candy gifted to them by the team at The Rookie. The sweet treats do not disappoint. And may I just say that amid all the protests and political assassinations and Kardashian heartbreak: Tavi Gevinson, Amy Poehler and Candy. The World makes sense again.


Oh the Places I’ve Been (elsewhere on the internet)

I’ve been doing some fun writing lately, and I thought it should all take up residence here on Burken Bag.

  • A couple weeks ago I joined foodies and environmentalists alike at Foodstock, a fundraiser to stop the mega quarry.
  • Boardwalk Empire came back for a second season. Oozing with sexy thrills, it did not disappoint.
  • Toronto skateboarders are all grown up, and they’ve found a way to do it on their own terms.
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Hashtagging De La Renta

Oscar De La Renta is bringing a fun, new interactive social media strategy to his Spring 2012 show for New York Fashion Week by inviting everyone tweeting and covering the show to upload their images to Tumblr with the hashtag #ODLRLIVE. Here’s the page where the uploads will aggregate – this is what it looks like so far …

The collection is showing tomorrow, Tuesday, at 6 p.m. ET. Shortly thereafter, I hope to see this Tumblr page filled with high drama styles, loads of pink, satin and maybe even some tulle. It’s not fair or accurate to narrow De La Renta’s style and vision to something so specific, but I forever associate his brand with the SATC when The Russian buys Carrie the pink dress …

“Oscar’s good friend of mine. I will tell him you like dress.”

“Oscar-r? You call him Oscar?”

“It’s his name, isn’t it?”

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All Aboard the Kurt Vile Train

Do check out Kurt Vile’s latest track, The Creature. You won’t regret it.

“They call me the creature of habit, but I’m a man just the same.” A beautiful song about being set in one’s ways, both in life and in love.

It’s an early release off his upcoming EP, So Outta Here, available November 8.

Polished for Fall

Labour Day is officially behind us, and though I scoff at silly rules about when to wear white and how to wear it, I have my own set of guidelines for post-summer looks. One significant change has nothing to do with the items hanging in my closet, but involves instead only the real estate between my neck and the tip of my head – i.e. hair, makeup, the works.

Every year around June, without fail, my freckles start to blossom and my hair get light and airy, and it stays that way until Fall. (I like to think of them as the Katherine Hepburn months.) When that time comes around every year, my hair and makeup routine drops noticeably, well it’s noticeable to me at least. The beachy look prevails with sun-kissed complexion and messy hair. I pack away my makeup and hair straightener, where they belong – out of sight, out of mind. But as tans fade, freckles subside and hair droops, I go hunting for my cosmetics bags and I dig out the small, coiffing machines that take my hair from ‘textured’ (or, mess of knots and cowlicks) to silky smooooth.

Come September, I fill in the uneven, patchy parts of my eyebrows. As my skin tone returns to its natural, pasty, Irish hue, it starts to feel more necessary to pluck the errant eyebrow hairs that, during the tanned months of summer, I managed to convince myself blended in with my skin. I sharpen my eyeliner pencil for occasional use, and I even use foundation to smooth over the blotchy areas.  I paint Benetint, a liquid blush, across my cheeks, warpaint styles (well, then I blend it in – I’m not thaaat adventurous!). It’s a whole new set of morning tasks and there’s a lot of balls in the air, from paint to pencil to powder.

In short, it’s a hassle. I always dread working the extra effort into my routine. So, why even bother? The truth is, it’s satisfying, fun even, to know that I’m putting on my best face (literally) to tackle my day. In the summer, the joie de vie spirit that’s in the air, and the humidity-induced layer of sheen that coats from head to toe, make the polished veneer of hair stylin’ and make-up wearing both unnecessary and pointless. As the days get shorter (the sun was low in the sky at 6:30 yesterday!) and the humidity sinks back into Lake Ontario, we layer our bodies with plush suede and wools so it’s only fitting to start layering on the face as well.

My favourite looks for fall:

  • The Heavy Brow – Eyebrows have been getting thicker and thicker over the last few years and this fall might be bushier than we’ve seen in years. Some runways showed androgynous brows, and others are maintaining a more feminine look but filling the brow with colour.
  • Au Naturel – In an effort to hold on to the effortlessness of summer, I’m looking to Rodarte’s Fall 2011 hair and make-up philosophy of less is more. Long loose tresses won’t work with my short crop, but I definitely subscribe to the soft, pink and golden hues they’ve used on cheeks and eyes.

Can I pair heavy brows with barely there make up? This might take a little trial and error. But I do look forward to being polished, well until the winter comes and disheveled ways reign because we’re once again at odds with the crazy Canadian elements.

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Dior Resurrects the Glamourous Dead

Charlize Theron, Marlene Dietrich, Grace Kelly, Marilyn Monroe – hubba hubba! The latest spot for J’adore Dior features this dream team of timeless beauties being pampered and touched-up before hitting the catwalk. I know what you’re thinking, ‘but some of those women are dead!’ And to you I say, hello, CGI – look into, thx.

I got to thinking about Dior’s selection of starlets, new and old. In making a list of timeless beauties, most people would also have included Audrey Hepburn, Ingrid Bergman, maybe Jackie O? Dior seems to have focused instead on the voluptuous blonds with lusty allure. It’s a boudoir fragrance worn by, rather than timeless beauties, timeless bombshells. Therefore, I would assume that J’adore smells of rose petals and chocolate bon-bons, but in fact it has notes of orchid, Damascus plum and amaranth wood.

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A Diamond in the Blogging Rough

To all non-Vancouverites, i.e. lesser humans (ahem, this blogger included), if you’re ever visiting the city of ocean, mountains and Insite, be on the lookout for Paul Melo. Photographer, designer and proprietor of the Style Quotient blog, Melo takes some of the best street style shots this side of the 49th Parallel.

In writing the above, I assumed I didn’t need to alert Vancouver natives to this savvy blogger, because, com’on, how could they not know about him? But I must say, I’ve looked around and I really haven’t seen much buzz for this blog, and I’ve been keeping my ear to the ground on this one for at least a year. Have I just totally missed the boat on the love for this blog, or is it a diamond in the blogging rough?

Screenshot Image via Style Quotient

He’s got a fantastic eye and certainly knows his way around a camera, as you can see for yourself. But even more impressive is the usability of the site – the layout and navigation is considerably more sophisticated than most style blogs out there, though Garance is no ludite, either.

If you haven’t seen the redesign of The Sartorialist, it uses a lot of the tools that Style Quotient’s been rocking for years, including a Related Posts widget that appears to be automatically populated by matching tags. I also love how he snaps his subject from different angles and featuring different details. It creates a more methodical, even posed vibe than the exciting click-on-the-run shots of Bill Cunningham’s work. Though I love Cunningham’s style of shooting windswept, mid-stride career girls in Manhattan, it’s refreshing to see the uber cool, calm and sexy Canadians featured in Melo’s blog.

P.S. In the course of writing this, I’ve developed a bit of a crush on No. 484 (see above). Could Melo’s bio now read photographer, designer, blogger aaaaand cupid? *sigh*

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