School Spirit

Admit it—you’re excited for school to start. If not, at least you have knee socks and plaid skirts to look forward to.


  • Chimdi September 5th, 2011 7:04 PM

    YESSS!!!! I wish I could dress like this…especially 8 of 11.

  • holly94nr September 5th, 2011 7:05 PM

    Love the mixture of prints!

  • Erica September 5th, 2011 7:11 PM

    oh i love this the colors work so well togethh

  • georgia September 5th, 2011 7:12 PM

    Love it. I wish we didn’t have uniform (SIGH)

  • Lilly September 5th, 2011 7:12 PM

    I am in love with these photos. If my school didn’t require a uniform, I’d so be wearing this. All of it. All at the same time.

  • Maareem September 5th, 2011 7:14 PM

    Aaw, it’s sad that we aren’t allowed to wear like that at school…

  • Tavi September 5th, 2011 7:15 PM

    We have a style post lined up for tomorrow that’ll make you like your uniform! Seriously, those things can be so cute.

  • Paloma September 5th, 2011 7:17 PM

    Ahh, this website is so good it makes me cry. I can’t wait until the weather cools down enough to wear knee high socks. I’m a huge fan of Petra and it’s terribly exciting to see her doing some photography for the website!!

  • batiababe94 September 5th, 2011 7:25 PM

    Yeah, we have to wear polos at school, and they recently instigated a rule where we can’t wear skirts! It’s madness!

  • janemerrily September 5th, 2011 7:29 PM

    i love the mood and styling(!!!), but…the lack of ethnicity? it seems like the clothes are exclusive to slender, caucasian-looking girls which is really off-putting.
    high school is beautiful/awkward for every type of lady! i know you know and i wish it were evident.

    • Tavi September 5th, 2011 7:45 PM

      Hey janemerrily, I’m glad you wrote this. We aren’t happy with the lack of ethnic and body-shape diversity in this first month of Rookie, either. All we can say is that so much had to come together so fast to make this site that we couldn’t get everything we wanted right at the start. We’re working on making sure every type of lady is represented now that the site is up and we have more time to be more directly involved in the content than the tech side. Not that you shouldn’t be pointing this out, of course — these things are important, and I appreciate that you wrote this without trying to attack us! Thanks! Tavi

  • Marguerite September 5th, 2011 7:34 PM

    I love these!! – too bad i have a uniform – sux 4 me – cant wait for style post 2morrow Tavi:)

  • spookyburger September 5th, 2011 7:34 PM

    oh god… my first day’s tomorrow and i just realized i have NOTHING to wear!! racing to goodwill with my fingers crossed!!!

  • ghostlightshow September 5th, 2011 7:34 PM

    I’m obsessed with the schoolgirl look! Just posted this entire thing to my tumblr….

  • Whatsername September 5th, 2011 7:38 PM

    I was never a fan of cheetah print, but oh man, I NEED socks like those.

  • Mirae September 5th, 2011 7:41 PM

    I am in love. The colours and the patterns are perfect! Wishing my wardrobe was full of these skirts and socks…and the shoes (last)

  • rayano-banano September 5th, 2011 7:42 PM

    The girl on the left in the second photo on kind looks like you Tavi! These are great, I wish more girls were ambitious to dress this gaily regularly

  • iWantLovely September 5th, 2011 7:46 PM

    @batiababe94 YOU CAN’T WEAR SKIRTS AT SCHOOL?!?!?! Go die, administration. I sympathize immensely.
    That said, where are those lace knee socks from (because they’re effing awesome)?

  • Naomi Morris September 5th, 2011 7:46 PM

    no.6 reminds me so much of shelly from twin peaks!

  • stellableu September 5th, 2011 7:47 PM

    love it!

  • iWantLovely September 5th, 2011 7:47 PM

    Oh, nevermind. I silly.

  • unicorn September 5th, 2011 7:50 PM

    love these so much! wish i could wear skirts to school. stupid dress code. uniform kids may complain, but at least they can wear skirts and get cute ties or blazers.

  • Petra September 5th, 2011 7:51 PM

    yes don’t worry janemerrily, I have all types of girls up my sleeve. this is just one shoot out of many different ones. xxx

  • Rachel September 5th, 2011 7:53 PM

    so accurate. :)

  • Anna K September 5th, 2011 7:56 PM

    Oh man I LOVE that daisy shirt. Where’s it from?

  • Olivia September 5th, 2011 8:12 PM

    Yessssss Petra!!!!

  • Toilets September 5th, 2011 8:24 PM

    Love love love that daisy shirt! My school seems to have a de facto uniform of combat boots worn with leggings that don’t manage to cover everything as opaquely as they should, but I’d prefer it if we all wore those socks.

  • unicorn September 5th, 2011 8:25 PM

    also, i love the hair in these. so long and flowy and just…well, just really making me want to grow my hair out.

  • malapeanut September 5th, 2011 8:52 PM

    I like the lace ones a lot but the colors just go so well together and it is really cute.

  • LaVie September 5th, 2011 8:54 PM

    @janemerrily, perhaps “lack of easily visually distinguishable ethnicitIES”, since everyone has an ethnicity.

  • kelsey September 5th, 2011 9:02 PM

    the prominent band-aids are, like, perfect.

  • rodmila September 5th, 2011 9:12 PM

    I saw this photo on tumblr and I took it because I thought it was anonymous :(

  • Kathryn September 5th, 2011 9:21 PM

    these are all so great! how I wish EVERYONE at my school dressed like that.

  • miguelabee September 5th, 2011 9:26 PM

    I love it!!

  • nlen15 September 5th, 2011 9:49 PM


  • Banshee September 5th, 2011 9:52 PM

    Gorgeous shoot, and sweet styling. Just a little hopeful advice, though. Please don’t be another magazine that reinforces the standard white skinny girl image and feature some color and some different body shapes on this site! I know you just started out though, so I’m sure that you will soon :)

  • Renda September 5th, 2011 9:54 PM

    I don’t think I’ve ever seen a fashion editorial and/or photo portfolio magazine thing that made band-aids look so chic. I love it!

  • appledarling September 5th, 2011 10:09 PM

    love the pantsu shot

  • Bean September 5th, 2011 10:10 PM

    For me, it would be dresses and boots. It’s always dresses and boots. A dress that looks very nice and pretty but with tough girl boots to stomp around in. I just love my boots.

  • janemerrily September 5th, 2011 10:17 PM

    @lavie – everyone has an ethnicity, you’re quite right! maybe it’s growing up white in “post-racial” america–i am used to ‘ethnic’ insinuating “relating to a people not christian or jewish” (merriam webster), which is dumb/archaic. i appreciate your setting me straight! “ethnic diversity” is what i should’ve said, totally.

    @admins – much excitement for the upcoming. best wishes for the girls stuck in your sleeve, i hope they get out of there safely !

  • Hagar September 5th, 2011 10:26 PM

    Arrgh. To be honest, I am so disappointed in this :( ALL we DON’T need is yet another exploitation of the American Apparel -girl. With skinny legs, way too short flirty skirts, knee socks and a “sexy document holder” – can’t you see this is such a porno(!!) cliché? You could might as well add Dov Charney or whatever that creep’s name is to these photos….sorry but I don’t like veiwing girls through THAT guys eyes. Or any guy for that matter. Cuz I can really see a man’s eyes gazing over these girls. Yuck. Yeiks.

    Although the idea of wearing plaid with flower print is lovely, grunge revival.

    Hoping you’ll do something more girl power and less cliché next time. I am a huge fan though of you, Tavi, will always be!!!

    • Tavi September 5th, 2011 11:56 PM

      Hey Hagar,
      I totally get where you’re coming from, but to me, cheerleader skirts and document holders are pretty standard high-school-girl cliches before they are porn cliches. They’ve been taken out of their original context and put into a porny one quite a bit, but I don’t see the use of handing them over without a fight. Everyone involved in this shoot — photographer/stylist, models, and editor (me) — is a teenage girl, and these photographs are expressions of a teenage girl’s experience. Yes, the girls are attractive and have long limbs, but I would say it’s taking away from a girl’s power over her own sexuality to decide that if she ends up looking sexy, it’s only for the benefit of an onlooking dude. Sometimes teenage girls wear short skirts and knee socks solely because they feel like it, and they have a right to do that without its being assumed that it’s just to serve some kind of male fantasy. These photos are meant to feed our creative juices, aesthetic sensibilities, joy towards things resembling old film stills, and Petra’s own way of capturing the people around her. They’re meant to feed our SOULS, our SOULS, I TELL YOU! …..Sorry if I got a little intense just now.
      The girls here are very purposely not making ~*sexy eyez*~ or giving suggestive looks to the camera or an invisible male viewer. There is no dude in any of these photos — the girls are talking and laughing together. Basically, these photos are reflective of Petra’s experiences as a teenage girl, styling and photographing her sister and their friends. Please don’t, just because the girls happen to look sexy to you, or because they are showing some flesh and wearing high-school-girl-appropriate clothing, impose some dude’s gaze onto them. I think a lot of trouble comes from that impulse!

  • littleDani September 5th, 2011 10:48 PM

    I am in love with this shoot. I just started community college and I’m afraid of looking like I’m trying too hard (therefore I haven’t been trying at all) and these styles look so effortless, I’ve been inspired.

  • KevinAndrew September 6th, 2011 2:09 AM

    Reality: I love this!

  • juliette September 6th, 2011 2:50 AM

    I wish I could wear whatever I want to school… but that’s the uniform-obsessed Australian public school system for you

  • Jenny September 6th, 2011 3:09 AM

    Girlcrushing so hard on all these crushing beauties. Petra, you’re so talented I want to put an infinite recursive loop of weightless medals around your neck!

    And thanks Tavi for writing this: “but I would say it’s taking away from a girl’s power over her own sexuality to decide that if she ends up looking sexy, it’s only for the benefit of an onlooking dude. Sometimes teenage girls wear short skirts and knee socks solely because they feel like it, and they have a right to do that without its being assumed that it’s just to serve some kind of male fantasy.”

    Brain hugs for being so thoughtful to Hagar’s comment, which I’m also grateful for, because honesty is cool & so is dialogue. I hope we keep having opportunities to talk about these thorny issues of how we as girls represent ourselves and how we are represented by others and how we see ourselves and how we are seen.

  • sybil_vane September 6th, 2011 5:37 AM

    I had to wear a uniform at school :(

  • AbbyMiaModa September 6th, 2011 7:20 AM

    In response to Hagar (whose comment really stood out and quite frankly annoyed me slightly), girls have the freedom to wear whatever they want, and since this shoot was directed and styled by a teenage girl, it’s representative of the traditionalism that a teenage girl feels towards teenage girl high school style! I’m not from America, I don’t have the freedom of not wearing a uniform, but I personally found this shoot inspiring because it gets across a kind of back to school happiness, the girls look natural and it is no way a reference to whatever you mentioned. Yeah, just backing Tavi up here I guess, because these girls were not intended to look “sexy”, they were intended to look like teenage girls, and I think that it’s a very good representation.

    I do appreciate Hagar’s comments though, because at least it made me consider a different point of view other than the “way cool! American school-ness!” one which I tend to always have.

    Loving the work xooxo

  • lino September 6th, 2011 10:20 AM

    I LOVE THEIR OUTFITS, and i love this website !! It’s amazing !


  • eleanor September 6th, 2011 12:34 PM

    These look like a John Hughes film and I love it!

  • Joselle September 6th, 2011 3:00 PM

    I am 31 but Rookie takes me back to my 14 year old self. I remember the night My So-Called Life DEBUTED on TV and being so excited. In those days, I did not have access to a computer except at school! I’m loving the site but just want to caution you against being too white-washed. Girls of color would love (and need) to be represented here, too. Believe me, since I am the Puerto Rican girl in my high school rocking Hole t-shirts and reading Sassy. Best of luck. xo

  • GemmaP September 6th, 2011 3:50 PM

    These photos are beautiful- I have a school uniform (English!) but it’s nowhere near as cool as any of these. This could be my weekend uniform! Loving the site xx

  • MONi September 6th, 2011 5:24 PM

    Petra, you are a really good photographer and stylist! This could be in any high fashion magazine if high fashion magazines would do shoots like that. Actually it reminds me of old high school movies. I don’t know how kids dress in America when they go to school cause like apparently a lot of people here I don’t live in America. So I just wanted to know if this is the real world or just like you’d like to have it. It would be really cool if you could like show what real American high school looks like today. I often find that strange about fashion magazines. They just show a world they create while never showing reality.

  • mollielikesyou September 6th, 2011 5:25 PM

    Wow! I was looking for a new style for back to school, looks like i found it!

  • olivia_t September 6th, 2011 5:43 PM

    I loove these photographs, so perfect! Also those black shoes with the chunky heel, those are amazing!! Also just wondering what camera do you use? thanks

  • serena September 6th, 2011 6:23 PM

    Why are socks so amazing? The lace ones are grand. Great picture.

  • junebuglove September 6th, 2011 6:45 PM

    I’m excited. ( only for my Sanrio doc martens and platform converse I got this summer )

  • milk princess September 6th, 2011 7:31 PM

    The hairstyles are pretty spot-on – at least in comparison to how the girls at my high school are wearing their hair these days.
    also THE BANDAIDS, AWW <3

  • Kacela September 6th, 2011 7:43 PM

    Really love all of the looks no offense to the actual clothes or anything but I NEED THOSE SOCKS! I am surely hitting my local thrift and Goodwill this weekend!

  • Pluiie September 6th, 2011 7:56 PM

    These clothes are too cute! Third picture is my favorite

  • pattismith4ever September 6th, 2011 9:13 PM

    You should do a homecoming fashion guide next, please.

  • ashley September 6th, 2011 9:45 PM

    omg this photography is so cute! i wish i could pull of the plaid skirt thing :/

  • nutellacube September 7th, 2011 12:56 AM

    Petra Collins, you are my newest favourite photographer.

    - Another photographer

  • squeezyfbaby September 7th, 2011 3:21 AM

    Freakin awesome!
    I wanna dress like this ALL the time.

    Just looking at these pictures at work is transportative.

    Small note Tavi: please please please have diversity with the models you use. I wanna see some slightly bored looking lounging black and brown and everything inbetween girls in their plaid skirts and sweaters!

    And finally, rookie is an oasis on the net that centers and calms me. THANK YOU

  • Anaheed September 7th, 2011 3:27 AM

    Hey squeezyfbaby! We wanna see those bored black and brown girls too, and we will, and you will, in the future on Rookie. We promise! It’s important to us, too.

  • Anjelica September 7th, 2011 1:21 PM

    Oh man, the downfalls of being English – uniforms. And yes, admittedly uniforms can be cute and fun and what not…just not if everyone else is wearing the same thing…and if your skirt and blazer are made out of some weird wool that makes you stink like a dog when it rains…ah, rant over.

  • Scarlett September 7th, 2011 7:52 PM

    Where is the daisy shirt from?

  • catstickers September 8th, 2011 11:58 AM

    I really wish I could dress like this! the cheerleader-y skirts, the socks, the school jumpers… my school uniform jumper is horrible though, nothing like this!

  • iWantLovely September 8th, 2011 11:05 PM

    Y’all might like this:

  • Pat September 9th, 2011 10:09 AM

    Such lovely inspiration :D Although the last pic was somewhat a little too revealing, everything was great and I’m just feeling the creative juices right now. haha.

  • vintage nerd September 10th, 2011 4:29 PM

    inspiration = very high<3