The Curious Case of Kimberley Vlaeminck

August 5, 2009 by  
Filed under Tattoo Tips

One of the most famous tattoo-related news stories is a pretty recent one, which took place in the Belgian town of Courtrai in June of 2009. It concerns an 18-year-old girl by the name of Kimberley Vlaeminck, and more specifically the 56 stars she had tattooed on her face at the parlor run by tattooist Rouslan Toumaniantz. Within days the story was on news wires throughout Europe and the world, with a seemingly furious Vlaeminck announcing plans to sue Toumaniantz, insisting that she had asked for three stars and that the rest had been put there when she fell asleep.

This version of the story was hotly denied by Toumaniantz. Not only had Vlaeminck specifically asked for fifty-six stars, said the tattooist, but she had been wide awake when he was putting them on and showed every sign of being happy with the job he had done when she paid and left the parlor. At one stage, he offered to pay for half of the treatment for Vlaeminck to have the tattoos removed. The news spread far beyond Courtrai, and beyond Belgium as people debated whether Vlaeminck was the unfortunate victim or just trying to shift blame, and then the story reached its conclusion.

Speaking to Dutch TV, Vlaeminck confessed that she had asked for all fifty-six stars and had loved the job Toumaniantz had done. She had not been asleep (this bit would come as no surprise to anyone who has had a tattoo – it may not be agony but it is hard to sleep through 56 tattoos being drawn on your face.) and she had panicked when her father had reacted furiously. Toumaniantz has since withdrawn his offer to pay for the surgery.

Think About It, And Get A Tattoo You Will Always Love

August 5, 2009 by  
Filed under Tattoo Tips

The most important thing to remember about adorning one’s body with a tattoo is that the ink is at least semi-permanent. Even if it is possible to remove the tattoo you will be fortunate if the most that you are left which is a patch of scarred, sensitive skin. Typically, this is not something that many people want to happen, but if for some reason you find yourself with a tattoo you can’t stand the sight of it will ruin part of your life. Either way it’s a pain, so think before you ink. There are some tattoos which look great and demonstrate something important, but you’d better be sure your reason is permanent before you go for it.

A lot of people like to get a loved one’s name, but relationships end. Some people will reflect the name of a band they really like, but if they then release a few bad albums and are found to be horrendous people then you will want to disassociate yourself from them rather than carry around a permanent reminder. As people, we change and our tattoos can not change with us, so it is important to find something that is permanent before reflecting it in a tattoo.

Things that are permanent include kids – a tattoo with their name is good, or a star representing each child – and ancestry. A flag representing your home country can be a good way of demonstrating your allegiance, and something to remember it by if you move away.

A Permanent Reminder of Your Love

August 5, 2009 by  
Filed under Tattoo Tips

It is not at all uncommon for people to commemorate their love for a boyfriend or girlfriend, wife or husband by getting a tattoo with their name on it. However it has to be remembered when considering such a tattoo that while love can fade and relationships end free of charge, removing a tattoo takes time, and often a lot of expensive surgery – and even then traces can be left, causing any number of problems and possibly making you rethink your entire outlook on tattoos.

There are many different ways to go about demonstrating your love in ink. By far the most obvious and indeed the most common is to get the name of your love tattooed somewhere prominent. David Beckham for example has his wife Victoria’s name tattooed on his arm – mis-spelt and in Hindi, incidentally – and this may be part of the reason why they have stayed together for so long despite trials and tribulations.

Johnny Depp was not so lucky, having got the phrase “Winona Forever” tattooed on his right bicep during his relationship with actress Winona Ryder. Their relationship ended, so Depp, a keen wine enthusiast, had it amended to “Wino Forever” – possibly placating his present wife Vanessa Paradis.

Then there is the troubled British singer Amy Winehouse, who has a tattoo on her chest over her heart, of a button pocket with the legend “Blake’s” above it, symbolising that her heart belongs to Blake Civil-Fielder who she married in May 2007. Their divorce came through in July 2009, and she hasn’t yet had time to change it.

Showing Your Sporting Allegiance

August 5, 2009 by  
Filed under Tattoo Tips

Among the most popular types of tattoo for an individual to get are sporting tattoos. These are common just about everywhere in the world that has tattoo parlors and sports teams. There are many potential variations as well, thanks to the nature of team sport which has uniforms, players and competitions which can all be depicted with a little bit of ink and an expanse of skin. Getting a tattoo to reflect your love of your team is in some ways a rite of passage, as the permanence of the tattoo is testament to your strength of feeling for a club.

There are ways this can go wrong, of course, because players have been known to change team. Robert Nesbitt, a fan of English soccer club Newcastle United, got a tattoo of their free-scoring star player Andy Cole on his right thigh. Two days later Cole was sold to English champions Manchester United in a British-record transfer, leaving Nesbitt with a permanent reminder of his own hubris.

It is perhaps wiser if you wish to demonstrate your support of a club to stick to a depiction of something that cannot be moved to another club. The date of a significant victory, a depiction of the club’s uniform or stadium would be good examples of this. Although a club can move to a new stadium or change its uniform, there will always be an historic link with the old stadium or uniform, and this connection with the history of the club can even win points in the “true fan” contests that sports fanatics are prone to have between them.

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