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Stag Ideas

Tattoo popularity is more than skin deep

Red7 , March 3, 2014

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Body art is a big draw.

Next month the international tattoo convention season gets into full swing when the Mondial du Tatouage opens its doors at La Grande halle De La Villette in Paris.

The show on 7-9 March is expected to pull in upwards of 20,000 people. It drew a crowd of  5,000 when it was launched in 1999 and last year the figure rose to 15,000.

Hot on the heels of the Brighton Tattoo Convention at the Hilton Brighton Metropole hotel last month, the Tattoo Tea Party took place in Manchester at the weekend.

At the end of March,  Edinburgh will host at the Scottish Tattoo Convention at the Corn Exchange. New figures show Scotland has been a 263% rise in the number of tattoo studios in the last four years.

Neil Dalleywater, co-organiser of the Tattoo Tea Party,  said that more than 4,500 people were expected at  Event City for the show.

He said: “There are now more than 50 shows in the UK. I think tattoos have lost a lot of their stigma. Even the prime minister’s wife has got a tattoo – in some ways the industry is a victim of its own success. Now people who want to stand out go for big themes and get a full sleeve that covers all of the arm.”

Sion Smith, editor of Skin Deep magazine, said: “I think it was about five to six years ago that more women than men started getting tattoos – but now it is about 50-50. What you have to realise is that people’s bodies can get full up – so the old school guys are getting fewer tattoos and the new-comers with more space tend to be women. Also it has to be said that – particular as the weather gets better – everyone can see more of the women’s tattoos. A few years ago people were going with big themes they are now looking at more traditional things such as swallows or sailors but they will put a modern twist on it. Back in the day just having a tattoo made you stand out- now you have to do something  different with your tattoo.”

Skin up

March 7-9,  Mondial du Tatouage, Paris

March 29-30, Scottish Tattoo Convention, Edinburgh

April 6, Ink and Iron, Birmingham

April 11-13, Frankfurt International Tattoo Convention

May 17-18, Liverpool Tattoo Convention

June 13-16 InkFest, Weston-super-Mare

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