Today’s Tea and Toast with Ruby from the Nude Baguette feels really special. All of my Tea and Toasts are special, don’t get me wrong. Every interview I’ve had this year with bloggers that I adore, has been so cool. I’m loving the whole sharing thing and bringing to you, little glimpses of the lives of online people who inspire and motivate me. They really are all special. But today, the extra specialness comes from the fact that this Tea and Toast is all about a girl who is only 18 years old. 18!
Yep, Ruby Dellas is 18 years old and has been publishing a funky little zine (a mini-magazine) called Nude Baguette. She’s published 2 issues so far in printed form and Issue no# 3 can be now purchased in an online form. And she’s done it all by herself. I just think that is something pretty amazing. Amazing because being a publisher of your own zine is amazing in it’s own right but especially amazing because she is only 18 years old. And she is also a local girl from our beautiful far south coast neck of the woods. I reckon that’s pretty cool too.
I met Ruby on instagram not too long ago when she sent me a message asking if I would write a piece for the Nude Baguette. That message got me checking out Ruby’s zine and made me realise what a talented, creative and inspiring young person she is. Of course I then got thinking about this little Tea & Toast spot of mine and how lovely it would be if Ruby shared with us a bit about her life and love of writing. So we exchanged words.
These are Ruby’s words. Enjoy!
Oh, but before you begin, I thought I might let you know that there is a little bit of swearing in Ruby’s interview. Just incase you are not partial to swearing, I’ve kind of blipped them out for you guys who might be put off by them.
OK, now over to Ruby.
Hey Ruby. Can you tell us a little bit about yourself?
Hello! My name is Ruby Dellas, I am newly 18 and create a little magazine called the Nude Baguette. I have been writing since I could read, it not only aids my mental health issues (hello anxiety, depression and OCD! Lovely to see you, as always), but it just gives me an outlet to say my god damn piece. I am also an amateur graphic designer (I nearly completely self taught myself the basics and went from there) and do every shred of design and editing for my magazine, as well as write a few pieces for the hell of it. I love books, Peppermint magazine, badass feminists, foreign countries and their cultures and fresh bed linen.
Where did your love of writing come from?
Well, as aforementioned, it has always just been an inbuilt part of me since birth. My parents are both hugely creative, my father rocks out on every form of guitar (and has beautiful handwriting…prettier than anyone else’s!) and my mother creates art via people’s hair follicles, so maybe it stems from them. They would always read to me as a child and I was surrounded by piles upon piles of beautiful old books. I think I began writing my first novel at around 7 after reading Enid Blyton’s Faraway Tree, until I realised that it was more just a memoir of my life. I am good at fiction, but it’s not my main love. I love writing about my crazy life and real things that real people can relate to. The feedback I’ve had has made me feel so happy with what I’m doing. I’ve even had girls who I was convinced hated me messaging me telling me that my words made their day a bit easier and that they commended my bravery for telling it like it is. It’s so worth it.
Can you tell us a little bit or a lot about the Nude Baguette?
The Nude Baguette is really simple. It’s just me wanting to give the underrated and under appreciated youth of this world, particularly young women, an outlet to say what they think and showcase their art. It’s expensive, it’s stressful, sometimes I think about giving up, it’s hard. But it’s the most rewarding thing I’ve ever done, and I am so proud of myself for taking that leap.
How did the Nude Baguette all begin?
I saw another little zine! It was cute and featured fictional stories by ladies from Melbourne, and I just thought, yeah…okay. I’ll do that. So I did!
Can you give us a bit of a day in the life of an 18 year old publisher of a zine.
My life actually seems quite boring to me. My sleeping patterns are awful, so I’ll wake up at minimum 10am and lounge around in bed looking at memes and knowing I should be doing something. I then go and dramatically smoke a cigarette whilst looking over the horizon thinking about the day ahead, pretending I’m in a movie, (despite my sometimes adult-ish ways…I really am still just a teenager) open my emails and Adobe InDesign, blast some Moby and get to work. I spend a lot of the time scouring Instagram for people I can put in the zine, and just spend lots and lots of time writing…generally just for personal pleasure, not really shared with the world. I will then pat my puppies, they will most likely pee on my foot, and then I’ll do some more brain storming on how I can improve the next issue and what to put in it. To be truthful, you’d be better off asking me about a “night in the life of an 18 year old”, as that is when I am most active. I fear I truly am nocturnal.
I have some great ideas so far and there’s some VERY exciting people lined up for Issue 3…watch this space! I hate that saying, but apparently it’s what everyone says, so… watch it.
What are you passionate about?
I am passionate about so many different things, some I never felt comfortable telling people as I knew they’d tease me or call me a hippy…
I love (the idea of) gardening and growing all of my own produce, but unfortunately we only rent our house and our landlord wouldn’t love a massive patch of earth dug up…or the potbelly piglet I so desperately want. I am SO passionate about empathy. There just isn’t enough. I am passionate about good food, good wine, good books, great music, love, strengthening bonds, one day crow pecking President Cheeto in the temple, furthering myself spiritually and emotionally, one day growing to love myself, art, science, space, the world in general…and what went so BLIP wrong with us as a species. I am also very passionate about bringing physical affection to every encounter I have. Not many of us get as much human touch as I believe to be necessary. My boyfriend probably hates me because all I do his hug and kiss him…and lick his ears and play with his face whenever he’s near me. Sorry James. Hugs are great.
What is it that you loved most about growing up in this beautiful valley of ours?
I was born in Sydney and lived in a beautiful little terrace house on Enmore Road (right near the theatre…Mum says that sometimes we could hear the gigs, some even before I was born…musical hipster foetus!), but after my Mother saw a man either passed out or dead with a needle hanging out of his arm when I was around 7 months old, she decided that the city was not the place to raise me. She is originally from here, so we moved back down when I was around 4 after enjoying a lovely few years in Empire Bay on the Central Coast of NSW.
My time spent growing up in the Towamba Valley was truly that of a fairytale. We lived in a beautiful old mud brick house with French doors and orchards and gardens and views of Jingera Falls, and a stray kitty that I then went onto name Princess despite her being an absolute fuck of a feline and always biting me and spewing in the study. Mum and I would spend our time listening to the Amélie soundtrack whilst making jam and preserves, picking fruit, attempting to heard the abundance of bats out of the house and reading with each other by the fireplace. I would deliberately run through cow poo, pat the sheep, swim in the murky rivers and dams and have mud pie tea parties with my little wooden toys in my cubby house that overlooked all of it. It was such a happy time. Towamba Primary was gorgeous…there were (and still are) two classrooms, a huge and beautiful playground filled with trees and flowers and a makeshift “sick bay” that consisted of a banana lounge and some blankets that were transported to whichever classroom needed it. We would do plays at the the Towamba hall, go to the Burragate Fireworks night for dress ups and bonfires (each and every little girl went as a fairy or a princess…I went as a moth), it truly was the perfect place to grow up. I was devastated when we moved into town, but it was into another beautiful mud brick house just out of Pambula, and I soon made lots of friends at my new school. Real friends, not mud brick ones.
I understand that this is an unpopular opinion, but I hate living here now. I feel like it’s shrinking me as a person. It is perfect for a family to flourish or retirees to enjoy, but it’s nowhere for a young person with as big a personality and as huge a dream as mine. I really want to leave. I need some Melbourne in me!
what a cute little moth!
Could you tell us a bit about your high school experience?
My high school experience was BLIP shit, and not for the reasons you’d think. I was not bullied for my dangly, long skirt, and I did not hate my teachers. I actually really liked and got on with most of them. They were hilarious and said some quite profound things. I loved school, for the most part. But I have always had an innate problem with mainstream schooling…and being told what to do. I hate it and always have….hasn’t just been a teenage rebellion kind of thing. I’ve always known that I didn’t need someone to tell me how to do the things I am passionate about.
Mainstream schooling…I’ve always thought that it was, for lack of a better word, torturous. Sit with your legs crossed, don’t speak unless spoken to…conform conform conform. It made me feel sick. I always had the gut feeling that something wasn’t right. The teachers hated the kids. The kids hated the teachers. We were put into tiny, dusty demountables learning about 100 year old topics that nobody gave a rat’s ass about. Call me naive and “a kid”…but nobody will ever put true effort into something that they don’t care about. And that’s why so many kids are failing/leaving school. God I just wish that some of them knew that they didn’t have to be put through this…I wish I’d known it too. I thought school was the be all and end all. It is just a blip. One that I now know means absolute jack shit, unless you want to be a neurosurgeon or something of the likes…of course. I’m not at all ragging on those who chose to stick it out and get an ATAR etc…it just wasn’t for me. And it’s okay if it’s not for you. Just because you’re young doesn’t mean you don’t know what’s right for you. I didn’t drop out of school to smoke bongs and yell at cops as they drove past whilst drawing dicks on the skate park ramps, I left not only for mental health reasons, but because I knew it was quite literally destroying my soul. Also, majority of the teachers were BLIP. Sorry for being born after you and not having as much life experience, Miss. Do tell me how to scream at Year 10 students to pick up rubbish over a megaphone on your only lunch break.
I thought that distance education would be better. But all it was was another form of slightly less BLIP teachers telling me that I will die educationless and broke.
I was constantly made to feel guilty for my ailments, and as though I was not trying hard enough. I could go on for so long about what was good (the soggy sausage rolls from the canteen, falling mindlessly in love with the just-as-mindless Year 12 boys) and what was bad (inhumane teachers and first period history with a man with possibly the most monotonous voice in English speaking world), but I don’t like to dwell on it all. I do wish that I had the entire high school experience sometimes, but I know that I’d never be where I am now if I’d stayed. Onto the next chapter.
What’s your favourite comfort food? (I love asking people this!)
I love this question too!! My favourite comfort food would definitely be some hearty soup accompanied by these great things called “not burgers”, which are essentially just veggie burgers, with avocado, goat’s feta and pepper. I have no idea what is in those burgers, but damn they’re tasty. It’s nice having a comfort food that doesn’t induce guilt. It used to be me hiding in my room with a 1kg jar of Nutella and a spoon.
Where do you see yourself at 25? What are some things you’d really love to do?
I am absolutely obsessed with Italy, I had originally planned to be there as we speak being an au pair, but money is a difficult thing. I love their culture, the food they’ve produced, the spunky humans who share those woggy genetics. I would love to live there for a little while and explore the rest of Europe. Before anybody arks up, I am a wog too. Just the Greek kind. Our last name was actually Delacovias before my Grandfather changed it in the 60’s due to some pretty intense racism. Anyway, back on track. My great grandparents have a house off of the Peloponnese islands, unfortunately they have passed away, but I’d love to go over and fix it up and spend some time there. I am also set on travelling to South East Asia to explore, volunteer, meditate, eat, love, rest, whatever comes at me. Saving as we speak.
At 25 I see myself living in Melbourne in a beautiful little studio apartment with a ginger kitten named Basil and lots of publishing experience. I hope I’ll have a good job. I hope I’ll be happy.
this photo was taken by Aislin Fall
Thank you so much, Ruby for sharing a bit of your life with us and also for putting together the Nude Baguette. Seeing young, passionate, talented people like Ruby making cool things like her zine really is so fantastic and brings a smile to my face. I’m so for encouraging kids, from an early, early age, to follow their passions and do what it is they love to do. Ruby is a perfect example of what young people can do when they follow their passions and her little zine is just the tip of the iceberg, I feel really sure about that.
The Nude Baguette zine has been previously published in print form but at the moment it is now only purchasable online. If you would like access to the online version of the Nude Baguette (and the brand new Issue no# 3) you can go to Ruby’s website http://nudebaguette.com and then click on subscribe for a year. You will then have a year’s worth of access to the Nude Baguette to read online at your leisure. You’ll also be able to read my unschooling article in their too:)
Hoping you have all had a lovely long, relaxing, Eastery weekend.