I have been meaning to write a post announcing that I’m opening my appointment book up to new clients, but my website, http://www.virginiaelwood.com has been hacked. My name is probably being used to sell viagra now! I’m working on fixing the issue… or rather I’ve hired someone to fix the issue because I’m sort of a luddite. For information about booking an appointment, please email me at virginiaelwood@gmail.com.

Here is some new work:


New York Adorned

I just updated my gallery on the New York Adorned website. A bunch of the photos haven’t been published before… check it out here.

back piece tattoo

Kelly came to me a while back wanting blossoms on her ribs. Then she decided she wanted to do a cover up on her lower back so we added a bird. Some time later she realized she needed another bird… and then another… and then maybe some more blossoms. So there you have it, a back piece in 6 steps! Not the way I would normally approach a back piece, but because Kelly is so loyal and awesome, I’ll always make an exception.

Black and grey week

 Can’t go wrong with a skull and roses

We started with the portrait and added the birds and flowers later… I also did a portrait of his dad on the inner arm

Dream Crusher. Her first tattoo and she sat like a champ

My take on a tribal turtle

Laurens sleeve

I have a lot of clients coming to me for half sleeves, and I love doing them… usually 2 or 3 sessions at most, and the upper arm is a great place for a big tattoo. I’d say about 9 out of 10 of these clients come back within a couple of years (or months in some cases) wanting to extend the tattoo into a full sleeve. That was the case with Lauren, who traveled from Portland Oregon for an all day session to finish up the half sleeve we had finished about 2 years ago. Luckily for me I’ve gotten used to people coming back for more and have started drawing most of my half sleeves to accommodate the inevitable extensions.

Lot’s of fun tattoos this week!

Get back to work!

I haven’t posted a tattoo picture in over a month! It’s been all sunsets and margaritas for me, but now I’m ready to beam back down to earth. I finished this tattoo right before I left. I really enjoyed tattooing Brian, he was fun to talk to, had great ideas and really trusted me. Thanks for letting me give you a good tattoo Brian!

Flowers and Birds


Christine and Elisa…

…two of the best public school teachers New Jersey has to offer, and two of the best custies a girl could have.

And here we all are at the Eastern State Penitentiary for Terror Behind the Walls.


Ex Hex

Eva was a trooper. She came in for a magpie with a straight razor and I talked her into adding all of the geometric flowers… although it wasn’t very hard to convince her, so I don’t feel too bad!

Rebecca came in with a faded tribal tattoo on her lower back, and we covered it right up. She was so sweet to let me experiment with some more of these hex/geometric flowers. Thanks girls!

It’s for me

The desire to get daily affirmations, poetry, or lyrics tattooed on ourselves is nothing new, I’ve done more than I could possibly count. But lately clients have been asking for their lettering upside down… so they can read it when they look down at their wrist, arm, leg, etc. Not sure if a movie star or model started this trend, or if it’s just a part of our collective consciousness, but it’s here to stay…. at least until someone comes up with an adage equivalent to the lower back tattoo killing ‘tramp-stamp’.

I have no problem with upside down lettering, there have always been and always will be trends in tattooing. The interesting part for me is not that the trend is happening, or even why it’s happening, but that when asked why they want the affirmation upside down, a huge number of clients respond by saying: “it’s for me”

I’m not in the habit of asking my clients why they are getting a particular tattoo, I figure if they want to tell me they will… whether I like it or not. But the response ‘it’s for me’ has no borders: men, women, gay, straight, young, or old… they all love it! I find myself prompting them: “sure, let’s do this lettering upside down. I mean who is this tattoo for anyways?” That usually get’s the desired response. An overwhelming amount of these clients do yoga or some form of meditation, but that’s a whole ‘nother story.

‘It’s for me’ has become such a theme in our shop that I decided to make a line of tote bags commemorating it. Screen printed on heavy canvas, they should be ready by the end of September. I’ll sell them at New York Adorned in Manhattan, but if you’re not from around here contact me (virginiaelwood@yahoo.com) and we will figure something out. I’ll post some pictures of the finished product as soon as they’re in.

Viva “it’s for me!”

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