From DJing to digits: meet the queen of OTT nail art
But Sophy Robson has her own brand of couture: her totally OTT designs require almost the same level of painstaking embellishment and intricate detail - except instead of needle and thread, her tools of the trade are brush and file. And copious amounts of glitter.
Speaking to Dazed, the one-time hip-hop DJ responsible for bringing personality back to polish explained her outrageous aesthetic. "I can't stand anything generic," she confessed. "If someone wants palm trees and flamingos, then I've got to do a twist on it." Neon colour, 3D butterflies and even teddy bears decorate her talons, although Robson can also appreciate a more minimalist approach - she did Georgia May Jagger's gold/red mani at today's British Fashion Awards and we can't get enough of her simple black squares on otherwise unadorned digits.
Related story: The next big thing in nails? Introducing spray-on polish
Robson traverses Europe painting (and building) her totally OTT designs on the tips of people's fingers, from Paris to Amsterdam to her native London. She sells her own press-on nails ('Nail-Its'), but it's her high fashion work that has garnered her the most acclaim - this is the woman behind Giles' eyeball nails in S/S '11 (remember those?), Henry Holland's tartan nails and myriad campaigns.
But if you think Robson got her start slaving it out in the back of a beauty parlour for years, think again: originally a DJ, she enrolled in a community college nail course before swapping the stage for own salon and convincing an agency to take her on. She got her big break thanks to none other than make-up artist Val Garland, who recognised her unusual talent and quickly got her working on high profile shoots - yes, she's painted Kate Moss's nails.
Robson is inspired by graffiti and uses apps like Fresh Paint, Photo Blender and ArtRage Touch to create flashy gifs of her work. "When it comes to nail art, I'm just so bored of what's already out there," she told Dazed. One thing's for sure: you could never accuse Robson of being boring.
Related story: A new kind of 'polish' for Palermo
Buro 24/7 Selection
Buro 24/7 Selection