Karina Chronicles

How Do 15-Year-Olds Feel About Karina Dresses?

We asked Daisy, the 15-year-old daughter of our brand ambassador Helen Austin to try out our dress of the same name!

I love waking up to sun on my face. I live in the Comox Valley where it is consistently raining from Halloween to Easter, so it’s a nice change today. Seven in the morning and I’m already showered and dressed in my new Karina dress… the Daisy, which is fitting to my name. When my mum and I were going through the website, I spotted it immediately and fell in love with it, before realizing that it was, or felt like it was, made for me. The pattern reminds me of the poppies that my mum used to have in the yard, although those didn’t last. On the whole, we kill any plant we touch.

I pack up my violin and school bag with my lunch, books, pull some clothes for later out from under my chocolate coloured cat and head out. I grab a ride with my mum and little brother, then walk a couple blocks from the school and meet my friend Ben in the band room. Today we’ll be performing in front of our entire school, almost a thousand kids. It’ll be Ben’s first time performing in front of a crowd formally, and I try to keep as calm as possible to help things along. Sound check is stressful as we scurry around setting up and plugging in, adjusting the volumes.

We sit down in the front of the bleachers and wait for our turn. When we’re up, I block everything out except for Ben and the sound that we’re making. The acoustics in the gym are awful, but we adjust our sound as we play “Time of Your Life”, originally by Green Day. When we finish, the applause is like thunder, and it’s only when we are off stage that I realize I am shaking. I give Ben a big hug and the rush of adrenaline is incredible.

The rest of the day is long and we’re learning about “Le Confederation Canadien” and watching the last half of the Hobbit for my fiftieth-or-so time in Film Studies. I should also mention that throughout the day, my dress got many compliments, and it was nice and light, perfect for the warmth of the afternoon.

Mum picks me up from school and takes me down to the local recreation centre for my aerials class, where I probably spend a quarter of my time. I have to change out of the dress though, unfortunately, and into leggings and a long sleeve shirt, and then I get right into stretching. I demonstrate a skill to the beginner class before my own class starts and I then get to work, climbing and tying the fabric into knots and different shapes. I videotape myself a few times so that I can see my poses and whether or not it looks nice. That’s what aerials means for girls… making things look visually pleasing. The strength behind it is almost taken for granted, whereas men are encouraged to do things that are more a performance of their strength. SO basically I am required to be very strong while looking pretty and dainty.

This is a big reason behind the choice of my dress. My arms are very muscly from nearly seven years of training with the circus on aerial silks. This makes it a bit difficult for me to wear little dainty dresses, because if the sleeves are at all tight, my arms look massive. The sleeves on the Daisy dress, however, are flowy and drape nicely.

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