“He would come to me like this, ‘I need my robe to look like a fax machine,’” says Monica Morrow, referring to Ghostface Killah. “So I had to try to figure that shit out.”

Morrow is a stylist who keeps a low profile, but she’s responsible for dressing some of hip-hop’s most stylish men including Ghostface Killah, Raekwon, Cam’ron, and Jay-Z, and she styled many of them when they were at their (or one of their) peaks. 

She worked directly with Ghostface Killah to bring his conceptual robe ideas to life during his “Supreme Clientele” era. She held down all of Roc-A-Fella around the time when “The Dynasty: Roc La Familia” was released and Rocawear and State Property clothing lines were flooding the market. And she dressed Cam’ron—she’s the person who suggested he wear pink—Juelz Santana, and Jim Jones when Dipset’s influence and flashy Harlem bravado was at an all-time high. 

“There were times when I was doing three to four videos a week,” says Morrow, whose team included Christina Won and Boz Bradshaw. “I remember Cam would do so much stuff that we had to hire two guys who would make stuff for just them every week. I had them on retainer so that I could be priority when they needed stuff. I remember sleeping on the tailor’s couch.  If he had a question and it’s 3:00 in the morning, I may not get the call, so it’s better for me just to stay here.”

Morrow, a Queens native who attended the Fashion Institute of Technology, got her start interning at YSB magazine, a now defunct publication that was owned by BET,  and then in the fashion department at The Source magazine, where she worked under Roger McKenzie and styled Biggie for his last cover. After that she freelanced and assisted other stylists before moving on to work with artists including Dr. Dre, Twista, The Game, Three 6 Mafia, and more.

While her name isn’t regularly mentioned—she says she’s purposefully kept quiet and let her work speak for itself—she’s one of the stylists who was pushing hip-hop’s aesthetics forward during a time when luxury brands didn’t want anything to do with rappers. But through her persistence, hard work, and ingenuity, she made things happen, helping her clients establish an image that people still reference (or copy) today.

Here, we speak with Morrow about navigating big egos, the challenges that came with dressing hip-hop artists, and the extreme lengths she went to to ensure her clients got what they wanted—one story involves hunting down Dapper Dan when he went underground and delivering a flatbed of Air Force 1s to the Roc-A-Fella offices.