10 things you should know about queen of nail art sophy robson

Top of the leaderboard for her incredibly outlandish nail designs, she redefined nail art with her 'nail-porn' philosophy, allowing her limitless creations to inspire the biggest fashion houses in the world. From Chanel to Marc Jacobs, Vivienne...

by i-D Team
10 September 2014, 9:30am

Ruan van der Sande

A born and bread Londoner, Robson's love for 90's hip hop music and culture have infused her colourful aesthetic, turning her creations into 'accessories' rather than just 'nails' and defining her as the dopest manicurist around. This year, she brings out 'Nail-It's ! her own range of express faux nails that come in six different designs. From animal print to half moons, she is keeping it modern in the details, giving the designs a slightly pointed tip, rather than the ubiquitous squared off shapes, along with a practical shorter length for wearability.

We love Sophy at i-D - she really 'nailed' it with her yellow nails for Jordan Dunn on our Winter 2011 cover (which is still one of our favourites) so we asked Sophy to tell us 10 things about herself we didn't know ! Take it away Sophy!

1. I started doing graffiti or spray can art this year. I got up one day and just went and did a piece and now I've done a few. I love that I'm putting it out there on my Instagram learning as I go under my nickname, So Fly. I want to do girly graffiti. It's way too male dominated. I've been into it for years and once did an online collaboration nail contest with grafitti artist INSA.

2. I've just launched my nail-its line and it's selling online in BeautyMART at Harvey Nichols and in Boxpark and Topshop. I didn't get financial backing and produced it from scratch. I even went to China to find the factory!

3. I don't have any business education or training. I figured it all out as I went along.

4. I started introducing nail designs and ideas to fashion shoots as it was so boring. They needed gentle persuasion. I've always had designs on my nails and want something no one else has got. I like starting ideas that everyone catches on to, like emojis, pills, Egyptian eyes, Jeremy Scott designs.

5. I used to be a Hip Hop DJ and still am heavily into music. Pretty much no one in fashion shares my taste in music. I don't think I'll ever grow out of it. I don't leave home without my iPod

6. My favourite online artist at the moment is Jorgeline Torres. We just started speaking online and she made me a nail art collage.

7. Last year I flew a helicopter over Brighton as a surprise present. It was so cool. I believe I can fly.

8. I'm obsessed with sunglasses. I used to collect vintage ones and I could have bought a house with the amount I've spent on them.

9. My best results in fashion have happened when I have a good relationship with the make up artist. It's like you are working together as a collaboration. My fave make up artists to work with are Peter Philips, Val Garland, Alex Box and Isamaya Ffrench. Also catching joke with them is essential.

10. I get most of my ideas of what to create next from the internet and shopping. That's my excuse. New things catch my eye. There is so much mediocrity celebrated on the Internet it does my head in. I'm attracted to weird things... I mean, I never thought of myself as an artist until nail art came into fashion. Now you've got people posting they're a "conceptual nail artist" in their bio. I'm like ok babes. It has brought out the creativity in me and that's always been my focus. I've collaborated with beats by Dre and got my own product selling in high st shops this year. Who knows what could happen next.


Text Isamaya Ffrench
Photography Ruan van der Sande

Jourdan Dunn
peter philips
alex box and isamaya ffrench
sophy robson
val garland