NEW YORK – Carly Mark, the designer of Puppets and Puppets, is known for enjoying a surreal “joke.” Her most famous creation is a black leather wallet with a lifelike resin sculpture of a chocolate chip cookie on it. (She releases new iterations every season; most recently that included green velvet and leopard print bags with bruised bananas, fried eggs, candy-wrapped brownies à la Little Debbie, and a landline phone.)
But the best joke from her last runway show wasn’t on a bag. It was on the arms of a model who sat “very patiently,” Ms. Mark said, for about three hours as hundreds of black star-shaped stickers were applied to her forearms. From a distance, the stickers resembled opera gloves, a ubiquitous accessory on catwalks today.
The punch line was that they weren’t stickers at all: they were pimples from the skincare company Starface, whose signature product is a small star-shaped hydrocolloid patch that comes in a variety of colors. Fans of the brand often wear them outdoors. (Or at least in selfies. The idea, as Fashionista put it in 2019, is to “make acne instagrammable.”) The black version seen on the Puppets and Puppets runway isn’t on sale yet.
The pimple gloves came from a desire to “improve the collection in unexpected ways,” said Ms. Mark, who worked on them with makeup artist Fara Homidi. But they also appealed to her as something halfway between make-up and a garment – fitting into the brand’s sense of humor through displacement.
“I like surreal moments, everything trompe l’oeil, things that feel fresh,” said Ms. Mark. — Jessica Testa