I got my first tattoo when I was 22. I went to a semi-clean, highly creepy little place in Buffalo. When you’re 22, it’s more about getting the tattoo done instead of researching where to go.
When I moved to Charlotte in 2000, I had just graduated from college. Of course the super cool trend at the time was the ever popular “tramp stamp” location. Now, of course I thought that was a brilliant tattoo location because it was a little bit sexy, but not totally bimbo and it could be hidden. To me, the bimbo location of the time was a band around your upper arm, a la BAYWATCH role model Pamela Anderson. Fast forward ten years, I’m just not in love with the location thanks to videos like this:
Turlington’s Lower Back Tattoo Remover:
I got the stamp in 2000, after I found a studio here in Charlotte that was immaculately clean, and the artist was kind. I actually recommended them to basically every Charlottean that had ever asked me about tattoos. But when I went to that same location for a consultation a few weeks ago, I was offended by the one artist’s “no can do” attitude. I’m certainly no Bombshell McGee, but this guy’s demeanor towards me was completely dismissive. So I left.
And I was pissed.
I had to find a new studio, but I really needed to research the local shops because I’ve seen a lot of God awful tattoos.
I noticed there was a tattoo studio called Paris Tattoos in Southend next to The Liberty and under Pewter Rose. My favorite shops, bars and restaurants are over there so I had to check it out. I happened to be in that area the other day, wrote down the studio name, came home and did some googling.
I found a fabulous write up in Creative Loafing LINK
which led me to his website LINK
and a studio that looked like an art gallery LINK
So I drove over there a few days later and met with Alexandra. Not only was she charming and lovely, and the studio is absolutely BEAUTIFUL. I am not exaggerating, it’s like an art gallery inside.
Yesterday I showed up for my appointment with my ideas printed out on paper, and Paris with his dry sense of humor said, “honestly, you’re going to look like a truck driver.” And you know what? He was absolutely right. I explained what “theme” (if you will) I was going for, and that I was trying to deflect attention away from the tramp stamp. We brainstormed, and he sketched these beautiful butterflies to symbolize my four children.
Paris opened three months ago, if you’re looking for the best tattoo artist in Charlotte, you’d be foolish to go anywhere else.
Here are some more links about Paris Pierides
And I kept telling both Paris and Alexandra to get involved in the Twitterverse with us! Go follow Paris, we’ll turn them into twitter junkies before you know it.