Ishita Wornette

Our new editorial intern explores her blank canvas

Middle school marked the beginning of an era of independence. I shed my elementary school uniform instantly, ready to finally wear pants instead of kilts, necklaces rather than neckties. But suddenly it felt like everything, from the bow on my head to the socks on my feet, earned side-eye from my well-intentioned friends. I felt my newfound sartorial freedom crumbling away. My reality was a world where it wasn’t okay to wear golden necklaces with horses dangling from them, and to mix brown, black, and navy all in the same outfit. But I just kept thinking—well, why not?

Now halfway through my undergrad, I think I’ve finally gotten the hang of this fashion thing. While the rest of my life seems overly complicated, I’ve managed to boil dressing myself down to one simple rule: the way I dress should reflect who I am on the inside, resplendent with all my personality’s multi-faceted colours, shades, and chunky jewelry.

And after finally thinning my list of eight possible subjects to study in university down to three, I’ve picked the seemingly unrelated Aboriginal Studies, English, and History. What I love about all three is that they overlap and complement each other perfectly, like pieces in a big puzzle. And that is where fashion comes in. For me, fashion represents the intersection of all that I love—history, literature, and culture. Ultimately, fashion is a medium where the politics, history, and vibrancy of the world are displayed, a true blank canvas.

This is exactly what WORN represents to me—a cheeky publication intent on seeking the quirky and unconventional aspects of fashion, embodying the real people out on the streets who are celebrating style every day.

CURRENT INSPIRATIONS

One Big Photo
Over the past year, I’ve been overcome by a serious case of wanderlust. While I’m saving up my pennies to travel the world, this site gives me my daily fix of some of the most beautiful places on the planet.

The Art Journaler
This website is a forum for creative minds from all over to share their personal discoveries through “art journaling.” Art journaling is about taking a theme, or idea, and peeling back layers of yourself through art, to discover or come to terms with the secrets you’ve been hiding. I love browsing through the journeys different people are on and get very excited when a phrase or picture resonates with me.

The Bohemian Collective
Lately, I’ve been finding my greatest inspiration through nature, and artisans with an earthy vibe have been my obsession. This site features a collection of designers who specialize in all that is folksy and handmade, putting together a wonderful lookbook every couple of months incorporating all of their jewelry and clothes. Only using natural materials like bones, feathers, and stones, their work never fails to remind me that sustainable can still be beautiful.

Indian Formal Wear
I just came back from attending three weddings in India, and now I can’t get my mind off of some of the stunning clothes I saw! Having brought back a ton of dresses, I can’t wait to see how I can put different outfits together to wear here.

Lydia Wornette

Our new publishing intern professes love for Denise Huxtable and Octavia Butler

Though I’m just beginning my journey with this publication, my love for fashion and personal style began much earlier in my life. Growing up surrounded by Denise Huxtable in syndication, Melanie B in her platforms, and my mother’s flamboyant east African dresses and prints, I was doomed for a love affair with threads of all sorts from the start. I believe in personal style as a powerful and lively art, and the means of self-expression with which I am most comfortable. After four-and-a-half long years in business school and a few other brief stints in independent publishing, I’ve relocated to Toronto and stumbled into the world of WORN. It’s a lucky thing when you’re fortunate enough to join an organization you believe in so wholeheartedly: It’s good to be a wornette.

Current inspirations

OkayAfrica
This glorious offshoot of the famed OkayPlayer highlights and celebrates pop and youth cultures originating from the African continent and its various diasporas. Fashion editor Poundo Gomis’s original content about style, design, and social narratives in African fashion blows me out of the water time after time and I essentially want to be her when I grow up.

Two Brown Girls Podcast
Two friends, writers, and women of colour join forces to bring fiery, intelligent, sometimes political, and always upbeat commentary on film, music, celebrity happenings, and just about anything else pop culture. And It. Is. So. Funny. Contributors Fariha Roisin and Zeba Blay laugh, scream, fangirl, and throw shade week after week and it’s marvelous every time. The podcast has a really dynamic Tumblr account to go along with it. Zeba Blay is a personal internet personality favourite and lists “rachetry, The Spice Girls, [and] bad late ’90s/millennial fashions” among things she loves. Game, set, match.

DazedDigital
British magazine Dazed & Confused is essentially what would happen if you threw all of the really indulgent parts of my personality into a vacuum and spit them out in publication form. Dazed is a new favourite publication (after WORN of course) and its digital edition tickles my fancy in a huge way.

The Black Constellation’s “Ode to Octavia: Part 12″
Art collective the Black Constellation put together a series of short films (part 12 has been released online) in tribute to black female science fiction writer Octavia Butler, and the result is the most magnetic thing I’ve seen in a while. I’m slowly making my way through some of Butler’s work currently and, as such, appreciating this work of art to a maximum. Plus I saw Shabazz Palaces play a gig a few months ago which was pretty prolific; the bass and the positive vibes shook everything in the venue with beautiful violence and everybody danced without reserve.

Nicole Wornette

Our new editorial intern traces her style history over a decade of shopping lists

As a child I was obsessed with Marilyn Monroe, Scarlett O’Hara, and JonBenet Ramsey. All I wanted to be when I grew up was one of these uncomfortable glamorous feminine figures. It’s no surprise that, instead, I grew up weird and with a dark sense of humour, fashion obsessed, and ultimately a writer.

My lifelong fashion love has been well documented in shopping lists I’ve made compulsively since the age of nine. I still write them regularly, and to this day they are the only reliable way I’ve found to quiet my mind at its most anxious. Looking over them, though, I watch my personal style evolve. The first two years feature exclusively clothing I saw my friends wear first. This inclination to blend in repeats again at the beginning of high school and university but dissipates shortly thereafter. When Legally Blonde comes out, everything is pink, and blue contact lenses have three exclamation points after them. There’s the full calendar year that I don’t bother listing stores because absolutely everything is from American Eagle. The appearance of a “Jesus is my Homeboy” t-shirt on a list from 2005 marks the first of many rebellions against my Born Again Christian teenhood. On my most recent list, nearly all the clothes are black (my style has been described as “plucky widow”), the only thing crossed off is a Detroit Tigers baseball cap, and beauty products outnumber clothing three to one.

I aspire to be a damn great writer and a bona-fide New Yorker.

CURRENT INSPIRATION

Into The Gloss
I check this blog every day, several times a day. I love the aesthetic, the fresh approach to the topic of beauty, and I have a major girl/professional/style crush on its founder, Emily Weiss.

Tales of Endearment
This is the vintage-focused and very pretty blog of Natalie Joo. She takes photos of herself and sundry other amazing familiar girls in their best vintage looks. The styling and images are just too inspiring.

Une Fille Comme Les Autres (Jalouse Magazine)
I really like any place where fashion and comedy intersect gracefully. This video is one of my favourite examples. Also, I’ve written “be like Jalouse video girl” in my journal more times than I would care to admit, so….

The Tumblr of Sarah Nicole Prickett
I honestly hesitated before listing this, because this girl’s a fellow wornette and, is that weird? Regardless, I really like Sarah Nicole Prickett’s writing; have for years. And now that she’s writing from New York (my big city crush), I can’t get enough.

Bestie by Bestie
I am obsessed with Gabe Liedman and Jenny Slate. Their chemistry is the stuff that dreams are made of. I could listen to them talk for the rest of my days, I think.

photography // Martina Bellisario

Martina Wornette

Our newest editorial intern dreams of France and Megan Draper


My deep love of clothes emerged when I was just a tiny girl, brazenly begging my mother to buy me a fluffy, white flower girl dress without having anywhere in particular to wear it. To my mother’s chagrin, I insisted on wearing it to kindergarten, the delicate layers of tulle rustling audibly as I soared across the monkey bars. Happily for her, it made for what would eventually become a remarkably embarrassing photo op, and to this day I find myself avoiding white satin for fear that she might again find a way of documenting it.

Sharing my birthday with Anne Boleyn’s execution date has always haunted me a little, and I think I’m only just starting to get used to the idea. As an English student, I prefer imagined worlds to existing ones; writers like Vladimir Nabokov and Virginia Woolf have always drawn me in with their sad and dreamy characters. I love the sound of rain on my window just before bed and traveling around with my mum. My personal style is always shifting and evolving, but I find a lot of my inspiration in the cat eyes, doll collars, and mini-dresses worn by French singers from the ’60s. Obviously, Megan Draper is my most beloved character from Mad Men. I dream of living in a tiny apartment in Biarritz, a small French town that sits just along the border with Spain.

Current Inspirations

Part Nouveau
Lilah Ramzi’s genius site explores the ties between the creative work and photography produced today and its historical and cultural roots, suggesting that most of fashion can only ever be “part nouveau.” (Did I mention she’s a genius?) I’m constantly impressed by Ramzi’s breadth of knowledge about the subject, and her always-incisive comparisons make the blog a fascinating read.

Miss Pandora
Created by an art history student from Paris, Louise Ebel’s dazzler of a blog takes a look at the connections between the art she admires and the clothing she loves. Her style is both nostalgic and rock-and-roll, mixing delicate florals and pearls with feathers and fishnets. I’m most drawn to the posts in which she styles and photographs herself to create modern reflections of her favourite classical paintings.

Natalie Kucken
Snapping her first photograph at only fourteen, this 17 year old Brooklyn-based photographer takes ethereal, soft-focus images that could be dreamed up in someone’s mind as easily as they exist in reality. Though the bulk of her portfolio is characterized by hazy portraits of fairy-like models, her street photography is most memorable to me; I’m in constant awe of her ability to capture something as ordinary as PDA and spin it into otherworldly gold.

Letters of Note
Edited by Shaun Usher, Letters of Note is an online archive of “fascinating letters, postcards, telegrams, faxes, and memos,” written and received by artistic wonders and political stars throughout the ages. My favourite is a 1933 letter written by F. Scott Fitzgerald to his eleven-year-old daughter, Scottie, when she was away at summer camp, in which he (adorably) calls her “Pie” and encourages her not to fret over mosquitoes.

Rio de Janeiro
There’s an almost mythic quality to Brazil’s second largest city, and I’ve been captivated by the colourful metropolis since I first saw City of God. I have yet to take in Rio’s pristine beaches and sprawling mountains myself, but when I do, I want Corcovado Mountain’s peak to be the very first place I explore.

text // Martina Bellisario
photography // Nicole Elsasser