Now this isn’t the first time you’re reading this typical Dutch – I’m told – name here on MONOCHROME DOT STYLE. Sophie Gerritsen was my year-long collaborator when we worked together at one of the 20-something lifestyle + fashion destinations here in Dubai. Once we learned to deal with the adidas versus Nike dispute, we began to see value in our complete oppositeness.

It meant we were able to complement each other’s aesthetics: mine being minimal, monochrome and sleek AF; hers maximalist in its colour clashes and patterns; and meeting in the middle via a streetstyle and retro 90s feel.

As she opened my eyes to a world of new colour combinations and palettes, as well as became an instant muse in terms of graphics and design. I thought it only fitting for me to 20-question my girl for my INSTA MUSE series, especially since she’s left me and the desert behind in search of a new adventure in The Big Apple…

1. Where in the world are you today? Soho, New York

2. What are you wearing? Orange tartan pencil skirt, blue tie die mens tee, my new grey/blue/orange Suicoke sandals + yellow Loewe sunglasses

3. Last project you worked on? Building an edgy fashion-forward retail platform for the creative and/or curious scene in Dubai

4. What was the last magazine you bought? Love + Oyster

5. Describe your work aesthetic in three words… Edgy, colourful, graphic

6. Describe your style in three words… Feminine, streetstyle/hiphop, colourful

7. If you weren’t an art director, what would you be doing? Photographer, curator for contemporary art museum [which is an art director but slightly different, LOL], architect or anthropologist

8. Checks or stripes? Checks all day errday, that’s an easy one. Even have ‘Just Do It’ tattooed in Arabic on my hands

9. Earliest design memory?

 My introduction to [design + also] hiphop was when I was 13; standing in the record store, picking an album purely because of the cover. It turned out to be Grand Master Flash + Sugar Hill Gang – can’t be more old skool than that. And, in retrospect, I realised then that I needed to go to Art School + study Graphic Design. Basically, in that moment two of my biggist loves came together.

10. Digital detox or alcohol detox?
 Digital detox, I actually love it when I leave my phone at home. The only shit thing is that I can’t do without my camera – there is definitely a photographer in me. I get so inspired by the most random things

11. Favourite place to go to feel inspired?
 New York

12. Favourite art gallery in the world? More of a museum girl… Love the Whitney in NYC, Foam in Amsterdam + Palais de Tokyo in Paris.

13. If your favourite photographer asked you to take him out, where would you take them? To my favourite bar in Amsterdam, which is on the corner of a busy intersection in a neighbourhood where you have all levels of society passing by. From hip to trashy, to business; all shapes/sizes/colours/ages. Best spot to people watch: what they look like and how they behave. To simply look at the city and humanity passing by. My biggest fascination is people; what they do and why they do it, on an individual level but also as a collective, as a society. So doing this, and picking someone’s brain and discussing this with someone who’s way of looking I admire would be the best

14. One ugly design trend you secretly love?
 Gradients. Known for using gradients in my designs for years + years now [so not really secret]

15. If you were a famous painting, which one would you be? Think that would be Big Splash from David Hockney, or anything from Basquiat

16. The dream gig? Having my own magazine… again.

17. Full-time or freelance? Full time for now – I love the social aspect of building something with a group of people. But, wouldn’t be surprised if I’m a freelancer within a couple of years

18. If you were a Nike shoe, which silhouette would you be?
 Air VaporMax 97 ‘Neon’ – bought them last year in Hong Kong + still am so in love. Since it is a hybrid [some OG sneakerheads might hate me now, hybrid is like blasphemy for some], it has the perfect match between old skool – the upper 97 part – and the new [Vapormax sole]. They’re limited ones, so it’s also an insider thing + not everyone has them – I don’t do mainstream.

19. If your #OOTD could talk, what would it say?
 “It’s still crazy hot for being fall – but sure let’s keep denying global warming…”

20. Prada, Gucci or Balenciaga? 
 Oef, I think I would officially be more of a Prada girl, but like Linea Rossa + the more edgy stuff, not the fancy, posh stuff. Love the hysterical, colourful vibe of Gucci, but it’s too Baroque [or Italian] for me. But maybe Balenciaga makes the most sense actually… Loooove their campaigns + original view of things; their references; the slight anarchy. And also, the fact that some people just simply do not understand what they’re doing.

Check out Sophie’s site here: SOPHIEGERRITSEN.COM