I visited this shop for a tattoo in dedication to my staffie, Lilly. I was unsure about a portrait because I was worried the artist would not quite capture her exqusisite beauty and I’d do my nut. Anyway I went for a lily flower instead.
The shop was local to my home town only 10 minutes away in Hoddesdon Hertfordshire. It is now run by 3 tattooists but when I visited in 2015 I was inked by a lad called Joe.
I walked into the shop and could smell the lemon disinfectant which is always a good sign and it was divided into sections. There was the reception waiting area, and there was a wooden screen behind which was where the tattooing would take place.
There are some comfy sofas in the waiting area, with a big book of designs and previous tattoos for those who are unsure or booking. There is also some beautiful artwork that decorates the bright red walls which is definitely electric.
I could hear some 90s hip hop playing which shocked me as a lot of tattoo artists love rock music so that’s typically what you hear when you walk into a parlour. However this music was a great atmosphere builder and it made me feel quite relaxed.
I saw Joe who of course was tatted from head to toe and rocked a beard with a dark hoodie on. He looked so much like a skater I still couldn’t believe his playlist!
He was pleasant and joked around with me which made me feel very relaxed and comfortable. When work started he chatted to me which was good, and when the pain kicked in he respected the fact I couldn’t talk much because I was too busy biting my own knuckles off.
When the 2 hours was done I looked in the mirror and fell in love. The detail was absolutely insane and he smashed the shading. It looked absolutely beautiful and I was so happy I got to have this on my body for life.
Joe was very gentle when cleaning and wrapping me up, and despite knowing the drill (and telling him I knew the drill) he still went through a very thorough after care plan and gave me some info to take home with me.
What was handy was that they even sold some Bepanthen in the shop for the aftercare.
Sadly Joe doesn’t work there anymore but he is seriously talented so I don’t doubt the other guys there are too. All in all it’s a sick shop that’s beautifully designed and I definitely recommend it!