Taylor Schilling Loves The Weird Girl She Is

by Maitri Suhas

Taylor Schilling is not your average TV star. For one thing, she's not even technically on television in the traditional sense: she's one of the stars of the Netflix hit Orange Is the New Black, the third season of which recently premiered for streaming. In an interview with Net-a-Porter's The EDIT, Taylor Schilling talked about how she has never really had a "normal" life and grew up with divorced parents and not much direction. "I think I was just born rogue," the 30-year-old actress said.

Not that she has any problem with that. The actress has embraced her unconventional path, and that's fitting, since her character, Piper Chapman, a very privileged woman serving time at a federal prison for a crime she committed over a decade ago, is not exactly your average role.

Schilling is always willing to remind us that weirdness is good. Since Orange Is the New Black debuted with its phenomenal first season in 2013, she has been open about her struggles to come to terms with the fact that she just wants to Do Taylor, but now that she's comfortable with who she is, she's here to remind fans to embrace their inner weirdo, too. And she does it all with a pretty great sense of humor. Here are six times Taylor Schilling was super-proud of the kook that she is:

1. When She Went Against The Grain From Day One

As the cover-girl for the June issue of The EDIT, Schilling talked about finding her path on her own after not having much direction from her parents:

I think I was just born rogue. My parents did not have a good relationship. There was no sense of, "This is where you belong. This is how you have a friend over for a tea party. This is how you go to a dance." It was chaotic. I thought, well, I might as well go off-map.

Not a bad reaction, to flip a situation and take advantage of her waywardness. Schilling went on to talk about dropping out of New York University's Tisch School of the Arts, because she felt like it wasn't conducive to herself or her goals, and that she's come to embrace being an outsider: "It can feel painful to be on the outside looking in, and it can be incredibly liberating to say, 'Alright, I've got nothing to lose.'" No pain, no gain.

2. When She Got Fired From Waitressing

When she was growing up in a small town in Massachusetts, Shilling was fired from a short gig hostessing at a local restaurant, which may have been because she showed up in a outfit "inappropriate" for a family establishment. Schilling doesn't seem at all phrased though. As she told the Improper Bostonian, "They fired me after four days because I couldn’t figure out how seating plans worked. I might also have worn a really short skirt and flip-flops, too, by accident, and they were like, 'OK, go home forever.'" Hey, we've all had jobs we're horrible at, it's just a part of growing up.

3. When She Knew Exactly How Good She Looked

Who doesn't love it when women on the red carpet know exactly how amazing they're looking? At the 2014 Emmys, Schilling said that she specifically asked for a dress that was timeless, and then laughed because she realized that might sound a little cocky. But who cares! Shouldn't she be cocky in her success? And even she though she joked about it, it's clear that she was very well-aware she that both looked, and felt, amazing. "Maybe you shouldn't use that word to describe what you're wearing... That's like something somebody else says," she joked with E! News. "I feel timeless and glamorous!"

4. When She Literally Put Her Blood, Sweat, & Tears Into Her Job

Now that she's found her niche, Schilling is putting everything she has into her job — literally. When appearing on Late Night With Seth Meyers, the actress said that she got so jazzed about a sex scene on the set of OITNB that she physically hurt herself: "I got very excited, I took my shirt off and I scratched myself with my little name tag. There was a gash on my face — there was blood," she said.

5. When She Loved The Wardrobe On The Set Of OITNB

Even though one of the big reasons I would ever even entertain the idea of wanting to be a television star is the wardrobe — remember, Sarah Jessica Parker got to keep tons of the outfits she wore as Carrie Bradshaw on Sex and the City Schilling is thrilled by the fact that the physical aspect of her character on the prison dramedy takes a backseat. "There’s freedom in not having to make it about how my jeans fit or what my boobs look like in a top. All I have to do now is play," she told Allure. And honestly, most of the girls really have learned how to rock those jumpsuits.

6. When She Gave The Best Advice To Her Younger Self (And All Young Girls)


At PaleyFest in 2013, the talented, badass women from the cast of Orange Is the New Black were asked what advice that they would give to their younger selves. Schilling's advice? "Be yourself. You're okay. And it really doesn't matter what other people think." Sometimes the simplest advice hits home the hardest.

Images: The EDIT; Giphy (2), Getty Images