LA woman creates red carpet fashion out of food

DANA POINT, Calif. -- Did your parents ever tell you not to play with your food? If Ruby Perman's ever did, she isn't listening. Perman is a graphic designer turned food stylist whose munchable masterpieces have been a big hit on social media.

As a native Californian, awards season is her favorite season.

"I just think that the celebrity gowns are like works of art," she said.

Perman first started creating food fashion as a pandemic pastime. With no red carpets rolling out for several months, "I thought of bringing the red carpet in my kitchen," she said.

Perman starts by cutting out the celebrity's photo and placing it onto a plain white plate. Then she takes whatever's in her kitchen - from kiwi to avocado to noodles to nuts - and fashions it into the celeb's suit or gown. The process takes about two hours per plate, plus up to six hours to edit and post the video to her social media channels, depending on the special effects she's adding.

The first A-lister Perman dressed was Jennifer Lawrence, who she outfitted head to toe using a pomegranate. She posted the finished product to TikTok and quickly racked up 2 million views - and more than a million followers clamoring for more.

"I just wanted to give joy to people during these challenging times," she said. "You know, something happy to watch and entertain them with."

Other fan favorites include Lady Gaga's infamous meat dress, a suit for Bad Bunny made from Latin ingredients, a purple gown made out of pea powder for Ariana Grande and an avocado outfit to match singer Billie Eilish's green hair.

She also often incorporates food puns into her captions, designing a dress for Celine Dion out of Dijon mustard and calling it "Celine Dijon" or making an apple-based gown for Jennifer Anniston (a.k.a. "Jennifer Appleston").

Produce shopping is a major inspiration, Perman said.

"I just think to myself, 'Gosh, what would I see in this kind of food, and what kind of outfits do I see?'" she said. "So for instance, I grabbed an eggplant one day, and I said, 'You know what? This would make a really good pair of pants for Rege-Jean Page from 'Bridgerton.'"

Her family's appetite plays a part, too, since they devour her designs after she's done with them.

"That's something that I definitely love to do, is just using my food art as part of my recipes for what I'm going to be making for dinner," she said, proudly adding that no food goes to waste.

Besides bringing her finished designs to gatherings with friends and neighbors, Perman has been commissioned to create edible seating charts for private parties.

"So when you come to the party and go to the table, you recognize yourself and then that's where you're going to be sitting," she said.

And that sense of connection is exactly why she thinks her art has resonated with so many fans during the pandemic.

"Food brings people together. And for me, creating a dish is really a labor of love," Perman said. "My intention is just to share love and joy with the people watching my videos during these challenging times ... because we all kind of need things to just make us laugh or put a smile on our face, or you know, just to cheer us up a little bit."

It comes as no surprise that she's finding the silver lining of all this because her motto is: "When life gives you lemons, wear them."
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