Prop maker Rosy Nicholas

Photography by Katie Bagley
Shot in London, England

After graduating from Camberwell College of Arts I began working freelance across a range of fields including illustration, props and accessories. I guess I’m generally a maker of craft based stuff; so far I’ve made a career out of card, paper and glitter so I’m pretty lucky.

IMG_0674

Like most curly girls I battled with my hair all through my teens (my dad is Armenian and that’s where I get the curls, mama is a poker straight English ginger so my skin is from her). I just didn’t know how to do my curls and they weren’t so popular as they are now so the only option was to straighten and try to fit in with everyone else.

I’m old enough to have been a teen before the invention of proper straighteners so it was a nightmare. Hour long puffy blow-dries from my poor mum and then putting hats on the flatten it. Eventually I did get my hands on a Babyliss crimper that had changeable plates that you could slide in a flat one instead of crimping. It was this massive white plastic thing that looked more like a hand whisk and weighed a TON. It took about an hour to straighten one wisp of hair and you had to hold it for about 20 seconds every cm and move down the hair slowly. SO LONG.

It’s odd that I had no curl friends when I was younger, but now nearly all my best girls are curly so perhaps we were all drawn to each other through the teenage curl struggle. Curls are so weird because you can use the same product and do the same thing and depending on the weather they can come out completely different day to day.

IMG_0844

Also all curls are different but with my white (ish) loose big curl I think the best advice I got off a hairdresser was to just stop touching it so much. The less touching when wet the better; it just breaks up my curls and goes frizzy. I haven’t put a brush through my hair in about 15 years and keeping my hair short keeps my girls bouncy, the longer and heavier it gets the curl fades to a sort of wave. I shampoo and condition with Aveda ‘Be Curly’ at least every other day, then wrap it in a tight towel turban. I take the towel off – so no vigorous rubbing or anything – and gently smooth on a pea-sized amount of the ‘Be Curly’ curl creme when it’s damp and then JUST LEAVE IT. No combing or twirling or touching other than a small scrunch a few times as it’s drying.

I think I only really got comfy with myself when I went to art college, so high school was more about blending in. I definitely always liked dressing up though, and any excuse to get a costume together and paste myself in makeup was probably when I was really expressing myself, but just under the disguise of a fancy dress party. My most radical time was post art school when I had a broken heart and decided I wanted to look like a glamorous freak and repel boys. I was going for some sort of Madonna/Blade Runner combination. Pale face/big dark drawn on eyebrows/no eye make up and a red lip.

Sometimes I flirt with a new colour but it never lasts and I always long to look at my hands and see that pillar box red again. Barry M ‘Bright Red’ is a good everyday one. I guess it gives me that hit of 50’s classic glamour, which I suppose is the era I most look to beauty wise, plus it matches my other must have… a red lip.

IMG_0797






I used to bite my nails as a child. My dad used to smack my hand out of my mouth and tell me that the most beautiful women could be ruined by ugly hands. It must have stuck because now filing and painting my nails is one of my favourite things to do on a night in.

I like to scrub once a week with Clinique exfoliating scrub because it’s just the right amount of grit. Depending on how much make up I have on I either use Estee lauder Perfectly Clean face wash or just a Johnsons baby wipe. I like the smell of them. It’s probably my poor ignored ovaries getting excited because they think a real baby might be on the way.

Then I like to tone with rose water on a cotton ball because it smells like my Grandma and makes me feel like a Persian Princess. Wrinkle treatment is my new obsession so I’ve started on Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair serum and organic Argan Oil from the health food shop.

Daily I use a BB cream, Estee Lauder DayWear and little bit of Mac Studio Finish concealer. I’ve always liked to have a slightly over the top pink rosy cheek and I use Mac Well Dressed powder blush, a lick of mascara Mac black Extended Play and then either some Vaseline Rosy Lips or a Mac lipstick, usually Russian Red.

IMG_0808

I like to scrub once a week with Clinique exfoliating scrub because it’s just the right amount of grit. Depending on how much make up I have on I either use Estee lauder Perfectly Clean face wash or just a Johnsons baby wipe. I like the smell of them. It’s probably my poor ignored ovaries getting excited because they think a real baby might be on the way.

Then I like to tone with rose water on a cotton ball because it smells like my Grandma and makes me feel like a Persian Princess. Wrinkle treatment is my new obsession so I’ve started on Estee Lauder Advanced Night Repair serum and organic Argan Oil from the health food shop.

Daily I use a BB cream, Estee Lauder DayWear and little bit of Mac Studio Finish concealer. I’ve always liked to have a slightly over the top pink rosy cheek and I use Mac Well Dressed powder blush, a lick of mascara Mac black Extended Play and then either some Vaseline Rosy Lips or a Mac lipstick, usually Russian Red.

Most importantly I’ve been drawing my eyebrows on for about 7 years now. I’ve always had quite good brows because growing up surrounded by Persians you basically get threatened with death if you dare pluck them.

I’ve used lots of different pencils but at the moment I’ve gone a bit softer in colour so I’m using no.7 Beautiful Eyebrows in brown and it has a useful little brush at the end. I’ve never had any interest in being a natural beauty.

I envy girls who are pretty enough to do it but it’s not for me. I love a face full of slap, big hair and red nails; I think they give me power.

Made with in