by Tara Osipoff on October 16, 2012
Beauty is a tricky thing.
What I’ve learned is this: Stop worrying about what other people think is beautiful.
Let yourself define your own beauty.
Stop looking in the mirror and start looking into your soul.
You decide if you have it; it’s yours. It doesn’t come in a box or in a shade of pink.
It comes with kindness and love.
Love to others and yourself.
It comes with sexy smiles and laughter.
It comes with intelligence and integrity.
It comes with empathy and compassion.
It comes with the confidence to own every part of who you are: the good, the bad, and the beauty.
In the end, things are just things; head jewels are just head jewels. They don’t make me more or less me, nor do they define whether I am beautiful or not. They are just things I wear to express how I feel that day.
Don’t be afraid to express what is flourishing on the inside of your beautiful soul.
I seem to be lacking the “What are others going to think?” filter.
I wear whatever makes me feel like me that day.
On the days that my mind sparkles and shines, I dress my head in jewels.
Love who you are. Start with the inside, and the outside will mirror just that.
Have no fear in being you.
Be you. Love you. Be beautiful.
Photography by Mike Phillips. Every week he helps my visions come to life. Find more of his work on my blog, or you can find his shots on his website at www.michaelphillipsphoto.com
Styling by myself, Tara Rose (Osipoff), and Tanisha Apperley <3
Hair by Sheena Huber from Elements Hair Design in Regina. You are great at what you do.
Makeup by Ashley Richter
Headpieces by Stacey Blayone
Models: Jessica Biss and Cat Lukan
by Tara Osipoff on October 10, 2012
They say the movement was born in Seattle in the late ‘80s.
They say it became commercially successful in the early ‘90s.
It was influenced by heavy metal, hardcore punk, and indie rock—
A general state of apathy with the current society.
No more playing pretend, but just simply being who you are, naked and uncovered.
It was a discomfort in the direction that the world was headed.
It was a shift in society motivated by anti-conformity.
It was a society fed up with theatrics.
It was a group of people who just didn’t give a fuck anymore.
It was the love of music and the rejection of the flashy, bullshit trends of the ‘80s.
And they called it Grunge.
“I’d rather be hated for who I am, than loved for who I am not.”
Those were the famous words of the late Kurt Cobain.
Grunge was exactly that. When the flashy glitters of the ‘80s started to get old, people were tired of the sparkles falling from their jackets. They no longer wanted to have fish swimming in their platform shoes; they just wanted to be. They were ready to hang up the sequined jackets, they wanted to stop backcombing their hair, and they didn’t want to see disco balls anymore. People just wanted to feel comfortable and listen to some good music with the people that they called friends. Laser beam and smoke machine concerts were tiring, and all they wanted to do was watch a band sit with their guitars and play some real music while singing about the depressing state that they were all in.
Nirvana, Pearl Jam, Pixies, Red Hot Chili Peppers, Cranberries, and Radiohead. These are just a few of the bands that heavily influenced grunge. Not only on a musical level, but grunge as a whole: the fashion, the attitude, and the movement itself. Grunge was a plethora of people sick of conforming. Supermodel Kate Moss started a trend described as “Heroin Chic”—proof that not only was grunge about music, but that the fashion industry too was taking a bite of the alternative apple. Body piercings, tattoos, and uncombed hair could be seen on the streets of Manhattan; it was no longer just a garage band, schoolyard trend. Plaid shirts, worn denim, and pants that didn’t stick to your thighs—these were staples in grunge attire. Band tees that were ripped and well worn-in. Crop tops that revealed stick-thin tummies and belly button piercings. Tops that flowed, over-sized sweaters, and converse shoes. Doc Martens with wool socks peeking out at the top. Khaki pants and do-it-yourself khaki shorts, hand cut with scissors or any other tool that could cut through the fabric. Vests, overalls, and trench coats. Floor-length floral maxis and oversized tees. Browns, olive greens, and cloudy blues.
The beautiful thing about fashion in the ‘90s is that it hadn’t been done before. It was pure innovation from the people who weren’t even looking to be innovators: it just happened. A movement was created that still influences today’s fashion, today’s music, and today’s attitudes. I like to think that some of my daily looks are influenced by grunge. I grew up on it. I watched my older brother play the bass while I sat in oversized pants and a Nirvana shirt. I would longboard with my bestie, Jen, and idolize all the young skater boys. It was a phase—but it can still be seen in my wardrobe today. Crop tops and band tee shirts, plaid and leather, jean jackets and khaki—all of it can be found in my closet at this very moment. I pair things a bit differently than before, but the influence is still there.
The looks from this shoot are examples of how I would modernize grunge. Grunge is classic and doesn’t need a lot of changes, even to work in today’s world of fashion. Designers are always bringing back trends from previous eras, and grunge has been continuously reinvented in the fashion industry.
Grunge stood for just not giving a damn about what other people thought; it was about being who you are. As Kurt Cobain said: “Wanting to be someone else is a waste of the person you are.” And ain’t that the damn truth. I think that’s why I have always taken a liking to grunge: I’m just me, that’s it, that’s all. When the makeup is gone and I am naked and clothesless, I am just a grateful human being with a head full of knowledge and a heart full of love. That’s all I am when you get to the bottom of it—and how beautiful is that?
When you’re naked, without your big TV and without your car, with no house and with no money—who are you? More importantly, do you like you? You should— because there just isn’t another you. So be happy being the best damn you that you can be.
Photography by Mike Phillips
You can find Mike’s work throughout my blog or on his site at www.michaelphillipsphoto.com. A big thank you to Mike, who is always challenging me to push harder as an artist.
Styling by myself, Tara Rose (Osipoff) and Tanisha Apperley
I’ve hired a second stylist, Tanisha Apperley. I met her and instantly knew that she would be an asset to me; she is an innovator, and the things that are to come from us will not shock us, but will probably greatly shock you all … At the very least, hopefully you see in us the potential that we see in ourselves.
Models: Edge Agency – Brianne Punk and Tiffany Janzen
Makeup by Tara Rose and Tanisha Apperley
Clothing from this shoot was provided by Uforia Muse in Regina. A lot of it was also found at thrift stores and then altered by myself and Tanisha. I do want to give a huge thank you to the amazing women of Uforia Muse. I can honestly say that I never leave that store empty-handed. The owners always have the most unique designers, and travel far to find them. I love everything about the clothes that they’re rockin’. Don’t be afraid to stop by and tell them I sent you.
by Tara Osipoff on September 26, 2012
I am not a conventional woman.
Shall I ever be wed, I won’t have slicked-back hair and a princess dress.
There may not even be shoes involved.
The dress will definitely be vintage, and will most likely not be originally intended as a wedding dress at all.
I’m not a picket white fence; I am not warm pie in the windowsill. I won’t ever have supper on the table by five. I am unpredictable and sometimes irrational. I like to paint when the days are rainy, and when I need to escape I can be found under the covers, humming to old records in lipstick and a rock t-shirt.
I don’t need a ring on my left hand to know that love can last forever. Your eyes would tell me just that if I looked deep enough, and that is all I would need.
Besides—who is worried about forever? The present moment is all I am certain of anyhow; it is the only time that is real.
If you bought me a diamond ring I would be certain that you are not my happy ending.
I won’t be your four-door sedan; I won’t be your woman behind the wheel with soccer balls in the trunk.
I play my music way too loud on Sunday mornings and burn incense ‘til the house is smoky.
I am ironic, I’ve been told.
My favourite smells are a cigarette when it’s first lit and freshly laundered clothes, even though I’ve never smoked in my life and I hate doing laundry.
So I guess you can count on me never doing yours.
I am not nine to five behind a desk and straight home to watch the latest reality TV show.
I once turned a television into a planter, and a beautiful one at that.
I might cut up your favourite old t-shirt to make my new favourite tank top.
I will most likely drag you to dingy bars to listen to live music and make you stay up late discussing the set with me.
I can’t be bothered with hockey and I read far too much.
I believe that meditation brings clarity and I may sit in the middle of the kitchen floor in a daze while your mother is over for tea.
I can’t promise you three children with quirkier names than the neighbours’ kids and I won’t have a dog named after your favourite sports team.
I assure you that no one has ever described my hair as “neat” or even “combed” for that matter.
My eyes are not a sea blue but a light brown, and sometimes, in certain moods, they are a creepy yellow.
I have daydreams more peculiar and extravagant than the ones you have when you are asleep at night.
I will probably push every button you have and push you further and harder than you’ve ever been, because I wouldn’t have kissed you in the first place if I didn’t think you were worth it.
Sometimes I am bossy and I need to be told so.
I see the good in everyone and spread love like wildfire, and you may come home to a homeless man sitting at our table while I fix him a sandwich and discuss his journey.
I want to sail around the world for a year and live far off in the woods when I’m old.
My art is my closet and that consumes a lot of my time.
My life certainly isn’t typical… and I guess that is what inspired this shoot when I was putting together the looks.
But if you notice, although it may not be a typical wedding shoot, it certainly still is a fairy tale.
My life may not be straight out of a book, but I live a beautiful dream.
These dresses were all found at thrift stores. Some of the women who have worn them may be divorced, still married, or asleep beneath the ground we walk. They all have a story. That is the beauty of vintage clothing, of clothing that is used. Just like art, there is a story behind every piece. Some stories may not be pretty, and some may be dark and scary; but some are beautiful, inspirational, and make a piece of clothing worth wearing.
I think if I am ever to be married, I want my dress to tell this story of exactly who I am, for it to be the art depicting my beautiful life and the beautiful partnership I form with another human being.
Thanks my lovely fashion lovers.
Photography by Mike Phillips – He is back again as my main contributor after a break where he was off to be wed himself, to his beautiful wife Janel Walker. I added a photo that I snapped on my iPhone as Mike was capturing some shots. His eye for fashion is incredible. He helps me to create art out of the looks that I put together. As you can see in the photo, he pulls out all the stops, and his creation sees no boundaries. If you are in need of a photographer for any event in your life, be sure to check out his work—you will be wildly impressed. www.michaelphillipsphoto.com
Styling by me, of course
Models: Jess Martorana, Robyn, and lil ol’ moi
Life, it is so very beautiful; dress accordingly.