ENTERTAINMENT

Who is Tavi Gevinson? Meet The Gossip Girl actress who revolutionised teen media

She was around long before Gossip Girl.
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Tavi Gevinson is currently best-known for her role in the Gossip Girl reboot, where she plays Kate Keller, the English teacher at the epicentre of the new blasts.

However, at only 25, Tavi has had quite the career already, having been called “the original influencer” by Vogue UK.

WATCH BELOW: Gossip Girl reboot trailer

A style ‘rookie’

Tavi was born in April 1996 in Chicago, Illinois, where she was raised by her father, Steve, a retired English teacher, and her mother Berit Engen, who is a weaver and a part-time Hebrew instructor.

Having always been a talented writer, Tavi launched her very first fashion blog in 2008, at just 11 years old. She named it Style Rookie.

“I read blogs with names like ‘Style Bubble’, ‘Fashion Robot’, ‘Fashion Pirate’, so I just kind of copied that construction, and was like, ‘I don’t know anything, so rookie,’” she told Vogue in a 73 Questions video.

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Tavi Gevinson with Kirsten Dunst at a fashion show in 2010. (Credit: Getty)

Young Tavi wrote mostly about her thoughts on recent fashion trends, and posted photos of herself in distinctive, often outrageous, outfits. She also told Vogue that her fashion philosophy at 11 was “more is more.”

Soon, the blog was drawing 30,000 views a day, and Tavi was garnering invites to the likes of New York and Paris fashion week given the eyeballs on her content.

Tavi began to attend these fashion shows, and other big events, allowing her online presence to continue to grow.

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Tavi with Vogue editor, Anna Wintour, at a 2010 show. (Credit: Getty)

As she grew older, her writing branched out to topics like feminism, pop culture, and the experience of being a teenager.

With all this writing under her belt, Tavi expanded Style Rookie when she was 15 to become Rookie Mag, an online magazine curated and edited by Tavi that featured writing from young girls all across the world.

Rookie featured articles about a myriad of topics, such as ‘How to Structure Your Days When You’re Depressed’, ‘How to Not Care What Other People Think of You’, and ‘How to Approach the Person You Like Without Throwing Up’, as well as thought pieces on feminism, pop culture, music, mental health, and relationships.

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Tavi meeting Rookie readers. (Credit: Getty)

What became of Rookie?

Tavi continued to run Rookie after finishing high school, but unfortunately the platform met its end in 2018, when she could no longer continue to run it without getting external money involved.

She has said that her ‘goodbye’ letter is one of her favourite things she wrote for Rookie.

While archived, the platform is still accessible.

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Tavi Gevinson promoting Rookie on Jimmy Fallon’s show in 2013. (Credit: Getty)

“Ending Rookie was not as hard as trying to keep it alive,” she said in a Q&A for Sorjo Magazine.

“Once the decision to end it was actually made, it was very painful, and it was a change, and I felt bad about the other people that decision impacted it, but the good thing was that ending it really was a positive thing in the end,” she reflected.

“More positive than keeping it going in a way that would have been painful.”

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Tavi performing on Broadway with Kieran Culkin and Michael Cera. (Credit: Getty)

How did she come to act?

Tavi acted in her first film before she’d graduated high school – playing the role of Chloe in Enough Said.

She finished high school in 2014, and moved to New York, deciding for the time being to not go to university. Instead, she amped up her acting and began to grow a career, taking on a number of guest roles in Scream Queens, Parenthood and The Simpsons.

She also worked on Broadway, starring in famous plays like The Crucible and This is Our Youth, where she acted alongside Michael Cera and Kieran Culkin.

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Tavi’s personal style nowadays. (Credit: Instagram)

What’s Tavi’s style like now?

Tavi still regularly posts about fashion on Instagram, sharing inspiration from random places, such as old Vogue spreads from 2008, and her obsession with Juergen Teller, which has existed since she was young.

She also mentioned to Vogue that a lot of Rodarte shows have made her cry (we assume in a good way).

She’s often seen in fun clothes throughout her daily life but can also pull of an amazing red carpet look, as seen for the Gossip Girl premiere.

“I choose one thing I’m excited about, and go from there,” she said of her philosophy for getting dressed.

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Tavi as seen in the Juergen Teller lookbook. (Credit: Instagram)

From Style Rookie to Gossip Girl

We’re anxiously awaiting Tavi’s return in the second half of Gossip Girl’s rebooted season, and hope to see her continue on the show.

Her ongoing role will depend on her not being caught out as one of the operators of the Gossip Girl account.

As the second half of the season is still yet to air, there’s no word on whether it’ll be picked up for a second season. However, both old and new fans of the franchise are loving having it back.

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