By Jennifer Belgard
With the playful charms of Charlie Chaplin and the seductive eyes of Theda Bara, Jaime Ladet is a modern gamine plucked out of a Western/science fiction/fantasy movie. An artist and crafter, photographer, musician and beekeeper. A fire performer with one foot planted firmly in Vaudeville, the other in a neotribal circus. She is a gypsy weaving between eras. She thrives in this one, but there’s no question her heart lies in days gone by. This blend of styles and eccentric personality is what sets her accessory line, Hustle n Bustle, apart from the rest. I was lucky enough to steal a bit of her time this week to share with you.
ATLRetro: Tell me a little about yourself.
Jaime Ladet: I am a designer, performer and photographer. I create fascinators, cocktail hats, tiny top hats, headdresses and floral hair adornments for Hustle n Bustle. I grew up in the theatre. Tagging along with my aunt to her rehearsals and shows, I’d tuck myself away in the balcony behind the spotlight to watch. Costumes and hats were a huge attraction for me. I loved to spend time in the costume room on the second floor of the theatre digging for treasure. I first performed as a showgirl at the age of 15 in a Western saloon, clad in ruffles and stripes with a small shooter pistol tucked in my garter. These days I perform circus and sideshow arts, fire-dancing, aerial and burlesque as a part of the Hot Toddies Flaming Cabaret. The creations that do not make it to Hustle n Bustle are the one-of-a-kind costume pieces created for special events and Hot Toddies performances.
Hustle n Bustle was born to fill a need. As I designed custom pieces for events, people would stop me and compliment me on my adornments. They would often ask where I had acquired the creations I was wearing. When I replied that I made them, they would ask for my business card. Hustle n Bustle is for women drawn to vintage glamour, romance and shiny things.
You also do custom pieces. Any exciting new projects?
Yes! I love to work with people to bring their vision into reality. From simple, elegant pieces to extravagant showstoppers. I’m always working on new creations. In the coming months, I have a variety of projects ranging from stilt costumes to bridal headpieces.
What keeps you inspired?
I am continually inspired by uncovering relics of the past through old photographs and movies. I am also inspired by objects that I find. I work a lot with floral elements, feathers, and things that sparkle. Just yesterday my grandmother sent me a package containing old buttons, rhinestone pieces and a sequined applique from a dress made for her when she was a girl by her grandmother.
Stefan’s Vintage Clothing in Little 5 Points. I have found some of my favorite pieces there for both costumes and everyday wear.
Hustle n Bustle is available at Libertine in Little 5 Points or online at www.hustlenbustle.com. Visit www.fireonthemidway.com to view booking information for the Hot Toddies Flaming Cabaret and a schedule of their upcoming events.
Jennifer Belgard is Co-Conspirator at Libertine, Curator of Curios at Diamond*Star*Halo, Barkeep at Euclid Avenue Yacht Club, and Co-Coordinator of Chaos for the Little 5 Points Halloween Parade & Festival. In her spare time she enjoys Turnin’ TriXXX and playing Queen of Your Distraction.