Where in VT should I get a wedding band tattoo?
August 13, 2009 10:50 AM   Subscribe

Can anyone recommend a tattoo shop in southern Vermont? Wedding band tattoo advice welcome as well.

My wife and I are taking an vacation in VT for our one year anniversary and to commemorate the occasion, I would like to get a tattoo.

I am looking to get a wedding band "ring" tattoo so I don't have to wear the actual ring all the time. I work in a machine shop and we can't wear jewlery on our hands for safety reasons. If I feel the need to "class" my finger up, I will simply wear my titanium wedding band my wife gave me on my wedding day (not that I feel tattoos are unclassy).

At any rate, I have never had a tattoo before and would like some recommendations if anyone has any. I am aware that some artists don't do hand tattoos because they don't hold up but I think a simple black band might be okay.

Any Suggestions? Thanks.

btw we live in CT, if that matters
posted by cmar618 to Travel & Transportation around Vermont (12 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
My husband & I looked into this & were told by multiple artists at multiple shops that the ink on the palm-side of your finger will fade. No one would do bands for us that went all the way around the finger -- several suggested we get "half-bands," but we decided against it. It was a huge bummer!

(Both of us have multiple tattoos, & the reluctance we encounted to do ring tattoos was surprising!)
posted by oh really at 11:05 AM on August 13, 2009

I've read the same about hand tattoos on the palm side. Worth considering.

I know you said southern Vermont, but Yankee Tattoo in Burlington would be worth the trip. I had my tattoo done there, and they are a fabulous group and do not disappoint.

And depending when your trip is and how far outside southern Vermont you'd be willing to travel or if on your way, the Boston Tattoo Convention is the first weekend in October and will have a number of great artists you could book with there.
posted by zizzle at 11:22 AM on August 13, 2009

Me and my other we also told not to get the finger tattoo due to how much skin gets rubbed off as you use your hands.
posted by nuke3ae at 11:25 AM on August 13, 2009

A half ring might not be a bad idea. I have a friend who had the outside and inside of his knuckles tattooed about six months ago. The Palm side has faded tremendously, but the outer side is just fine. I like the idea!
posted by bucko at 11:32 AM on August 13, 2009

I love the sentiment, and I hope this isn't too far off-base, but here's a tangential thought: the symbolism of the ring finger is that it was thought to contain a vein that ran straight to the heart or something, yes?

So there may be other places you can "ring" that also run along that path to the heart: your wrist, for instance, or the bicep of that hand if you're into that "tribal band" look. That way, no matter where the (metal) ring is, you have your ink in a symbolic place along the path to the heart. If the "ring" isn't the key element, a tattoo that traces a segment of that vein may also be a tatt-friendly alternative that follows the same symbolism as the original ring location.
posted by Shepherd at 11:45 AM on August 13, 2009

I agree with "oh really". Hand tattoos don't tend to hold up well. The other thing to consider is that marriages don't always last forever. My husband passed away five years ago and it was quite symbolic for me when I finally removed my rings. I do have a memorial tattoo dedicated to him. ( I am in no way trying to suggest that your marriage won't be long and loving but it pays to be pragmatic.)
Something that I have done is get tattoos that comemorate significant events in my life. I have a tattoo that I got after a particularyl wonderful weekend with my boyfriend (partner? Lover? All of the above.) While the relationship may change or even end (no sign of that so far!) that weekend will always stand out as a memorable time for me.
There is always the option of having entwined gold bands placed somewhere visible (the inside of your wrist?) I have a set of tattoos there and I like the placement. They have held up well and I can always see them.
I have fifteen tattoos myself and love each of them. A great deal of consideration went into each one.
I hope I have been helpful here.
posted by Wendy BD at 12:02 PM on August 13, 2009

What oh really and Wendy said.

I've spent a fair bit of time hanging out in tattoo shops, and I know more than a few tattoo artists. Every single one of them dislikes doing rings. Some try to talk people out of it, but more just refuse to do 'em.

Happy anniversary, and good luck.
posted by box at 1:04 PM on August 13, 2009

My wife and I had a similar idea, but our tattoo artists refused to tat our fingers because the art tends to wear really poorly, since hands are generally exposed to tons of abuse.

I'm an auto technician and, like you, I refrain from wearing my ring at work. I got a piece on my chest for my wife, as a marriage commemoration. But I really want to warn you against getting hand tattoos in your field. Even the ink on my forearms is starting to get really beat up from working on cars. One of my coworkers got a half-ring tattoo a couple months ago after he got married and it looks like garbage already. Don't do it, please.

Get your first tattoo somewhere meaty. Anywhere that the bone is close to the surface hurts like hell. Forearms and shoulders good places. The ink on my elbow and chest (near the nipple, oh no!) hurt the worst by far.
posted by Jon-o at 6:08 PM on August 13, 2009

For a reference: here is a picture of my wedding "ring" 14 years post-tatoo.

I have oddly hairy fingers.
posted by dogmom at 8:08 PM on August 13, 2009

Thanks for all the advice. I kind of thought I would be told that fill rings don't ever work out. I guess I was hoping for someone to say otherwise. What about the top of a finger, like a half ring?

Dogmom: Thanks for the pic of yours. Your tat seems to be a bit faded but would touch ups help? And what if I went with a more simple design? (btw: I don't see anything oddly hairy about your fingers)

Jon-o: I'm glad someone who also works a lot with their hands chimed in. I know it's weird for me to ask but do you think you could get your coworker to let you take a picture of his finger. If you feel strange about asking and would rather not, I completely understand as I would feel weird too. As far as the pain goes, I'm not too worried about it. I know it makes me sound like a "tough guy" (which I am far from) but I'll deal with the pain. I figure if it's there forever, some pain is okay.

As it is, I am leaning away from not doing a full finger band.

Thanks again everyone!
posted by cmar618 at 10:18 AM on August 14, 2009

Your tat seems to be a bit faded but would touch ups help? And what if I went with a more simple design?

Maybe touch ups would help? I'm not sure since I haven't had mine touched up. Anecdotally, though, when I got mine, it hurt the least of the three (the other two are on each shoulder)- to me it felt like someone was plucking my finger hairs. So when my sis-in-law wanted the same thing 5 years later when she got married, she went to my tattoo guy. You could hear the screaming from outside the shop. She let him finish the outline but that was it- no color. Hers, with just the outline, looks much better than mine now. Of course, hers is only 9 years old, but still, you might be ok with a very simple design.
posted by dogmom at 1:14 PM on August 14, 2009

FYI, I hear good things about Shady Lady Tattoos in Randolph. She's who I am goign to for my next one.
posted by terrapin at 2:30 PM on August 14, 2009

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