This Instagram Takes Playing With Food To The Next Level

Photo: Via @groehrs.
We’ve always been told not to play with our grub. But for artist Gretchen Röehrs, fiddling with her food turned out to be a very wise pastime. Not only has it spawned a popular series of inspirational fashion illustrations involving delicious fruit and veggies, it has also made her into a budding Instagram star.

The San Francisco-based designer turned techie creates mini-portraits of stylish women that foodies and fashion lovers alike can enjoy. Using seasonal California produce as the base of the portrait, she then adds in delicately inked details to complete the look.

We've rounded up 10 of our favorite snaps and got the scoop from Röehrs on everything from her favorite food to work with to how she got started. Be warned — your tummy will grumble.
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Photo: Via @groehrs.
Tell us more about how you got started with the illustrations.
"It started as a bit of a joke with a friend on the East Coast who missed the amazing California produce during winter. If he couldn't eat anything fresh, he could at least laugh at a couple of ladies wearing blackberries."
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Photo: Via @groehrs.
When did you first notice the Instagram was picking up steam?
"Early in June, it started picking up. I always received many more 'likes' on my drawings than my selfies, so I gave the people what they wanted! It blows my mind that anyone outside my friends thinks these drawings are funny, but I'm so flattered."
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Photo: Via @groehrs.
What's the inspiration behind the illustrations?
"Food and fashion cultures have funny ways of intersecting. I love the lobster dress Salvador Dalí did with Elsa Schiaparelli. Turning foods we eat every day into glamorous ensembles is kind of subversive and fun."
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Photo: Via @groehrs.
What's your favorite food to use?
"String beans and banana peels lend themselves very well to leggy models strutting around. Happily, they've inspired me to wear more palazzo pants."
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Photo: Via @groehrs.
What's one food you haven't used that you'd like to try out?
"Pineapples are so dramatic to begin with, so I'd love to get my hands on one. Need to find a bigger sketch pad first!"
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Photo: Via @groehrs.
What's the most challenging fruit or veggie to work with?
"Not technically fruit or veggie, but the egg-yolk beach ball was really messy."
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Photo: Via @groehrs.
What's your professional background?
"I went to school for fashion design, so that's where I learned more formal illustration and portrait techniques. I worked in the fashion industry for a while in New York before moving to California, where I now do user-experience design at startups — but I still refuse to wear hoodies."
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Photo: Via @groehrs.
What would you be doing if you weren't doing these illustrations?
"Focusing on coding again, instead of playing with my food!"
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Photo: Via @groehrs.
Who are some other artists you admire?
"There are so many contemporary fashion illustrators I admire, like Richard Haines and Donald Robertson. They push the envelope and make the industry have a much-needed laugh at itself."
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Photo: Via @groehrs.
Any tricks or tips you can share with us?
"Buy the ugly produce — it tastes way better."