I didn't think it'd be possible to feel so warmly towards someone who clamps a part of body, pierces some metal through it, makes it bleed, takes my money, and it's all done, in-and-out, in 10 minutes.
She did give me a lollipop afterwards though I suppose. Like giving candy to a baby. And she told me I had the nicest tragus she'd seen.
And I have to give Yelp a hard time here. Or perhaps Edinburgh yelpers. When searching for a place for a piercing, and recs and reviews, hardly anywhere had reviews of Tattoo & Piercing parlours for the piercings rather than the tattoos. So I was a wee bitty stumped.
But Studio XVIII came up trumps, and I was only secured in my belief 10 minutes before the drop-in when I was chatting to a girl at Black Medicine who had at least 5 piercings that I could see and she smiled and nodded approval when I said "Studio XVIII" and also told me to ask for Sarah, and Sarah only.
Luck would have it on my drop-in that Sarah was working. Like Steph has said, the atmosphere in here can be a little intimidating as it's so badass. I'm not badass, I don't have any tattoos, I just wanted some metal in my ear. The staff, for the most part, were friendly although I think there was one person who maybe had had a bad day and was a bit weary and worn and giving folk a hard time.
Sarah herself was awesome. I immediately felt comfortable. I've been pierced before, and not scared of pain. She was quite to the point, perfunctory, quick -so if you're someone who's nervous, needs some time, I'm sure if you said to her "I'm nervous" she'd take her time and be slower. But I like wripping the band-aid off -or jabbing the needle through, quick and easy. So I thinks he immediately picked up on that and was happy just to wham, bam, crunch, bleed, and thank you ma'am.
They do drop-ins, I just had a 15 minute wait at 5.30pm on a Tuesday. The appointment itself lasted 10 minutes, I only bled a little. The piercing itself was quick, and as pain-free as it could be. The clamping was the most uncomfortable bit, it was more the crunch of my beautiful tragus being pierced than any pain itself.
And did I say she gave me a lollipop after?
It's the day after, but so far so good. There was no pain after, and I suppose I'm a bit of a piercing noob, but as the girl in Black Medicine was telling me, Sarah really is one of the best for it. She's quick, clean, hygenic, professional. She knows what size bar or hoop to use for swelling, she knows whether you're going to keep bleeding so to keep you sitting longer, she's friendly but efficient and really responsive to how you react to the whole thing.
Total girl crush. Compliment my tragus, give me a lollipop and I'm yours (it would seem).
THE TATTOO I GOT WAS GREAT.
No failure in artistry here.
Went in for my tattoo, gave him a picture, got it blown up, put it on my body, did it... Bing. Bang. Boom. I'm out of there in 15 minutes.
But... I will warn you of two things.
#1. It's an intimidating tattoo place. The artists are probably some of the best (i checked out their books, they're pretty brilliant) but that sometimes means you feel like they don't want to do a little cutesy tattoo (literary quote right here).
I felt very un-badass here and it wasn't so welcoming. When someone is sticking a needle in your skin to leave a permanent piece of art, I'd like a bit of chatter.
which leads me to #2.
The tattoos are done in one big room, all very close to the other artists and music blasting... so no chatter, no small talk, no dishing on cool places in the city and nothing (this is most important for me) nothing to keep my mind from thinking about the massively excruciating pain that is pulsing through my body.
AND... My shirt is 1/2 off... so I'm in a room full of hot young tattoo artists and cute guys getting tattoo sleeves and all I can think of is - F**K! I have tan lines and need to lose 15 pounds and F**K! Someone is sticking a needle in my bod. OW.OW.OW.OW.. All in all a bit disconcerting.
Tattoo came out perfect, and was done in 10 mins - ZERO complaints about the art, it looks amazing... but my hope to find out the ins and outs of Edinburgh's tattooed side and meet some people was not fulfilled.
I was in Edinburgh for all of 36 hours back in '07. It was my only stop in Scotland during my 9 day trip to the UK. While I was there, however, I *had* to get a tattoo to commemorate being there.
I liked the looks of this shop, and had heard good things about it. While I was in there getting my tattoo (set up the appointment the first day, came back the next to get inked), I come to find out that one of the owners is from Wisconsin. We swapped stories, I got my ink and had a great time!
The shop wasn't huge, 2 tattoo chairs and a chair for piercings (with a curtain to draw around for privacy). The chairs are in the back, separated from the gallery up front. Prices were comparable to what I would have paid in the states, but not sure how they measure up to other shops in town.
I love my tattoo, it's vibrant and cheerful, and was the best souvenir I brought home.
I got tattooed here by Marc last week and will definitely go back to him. It's the first time I've been to Studio XIII but was for my third tattoo and I've got only positive things to say. Ignore the badass comments in other reviews, it's a tattoo studio, there were never going to be Katy Perry posters and kittens in reception! I'm an absolute girlie girl, I remember having bright pink lippy on that day but so what?! Hell, I even asked him if I could get it done with fake tan on (night out next day, gotta think of this stuff). We're customers paying for a service and they provide an excellent one, I think people who posted comments about feeling self conscious are over-thinking it, these guys tattoo and pierce zillions of people and in a City like Edinburgh so they'll see all sorts. My tattoo was pretty girlie, picking up on previous reviews, with Latin script and 3 little drawings and Marc actually drew it up even more delicate and feminine than the stuff I sent him. He was also quick and it's healed quicker than my others, I love it. Mine was all black ink but I saw a couple of people leaving with stunning colour ones. As for the privacy - I was in the little upstairs room so there was the hustle and bustle of people at reception and people coming into the room but the other places I've been tattooed were open too and I like the music and other people as a distraction. Marc chatted a bit but none of the guys I've been to have been very talkative during the actual needle action, which is fine, I'm glad they're concentrating!
Friendly and professional fully licensed Piercing and Tattoo Studio. We are an award winning established business with over 20 years experience. All styles are welcome here, size no problem from tiny to full body suits! All artists have portfolios for you to see the quality of work. There are thousands of designs available to choose from if you don't have your own to bring in.
Female piercers specialising in all body piercing including microdermals, surface piercings and stretching.
Come see for yourself, we are open 7 days a week until 6pm!
Established in 2005.
Selling our shop in the States, we moved back to Edinburgh and opened Studio XIII Gallery. We soon outgrew no.6 Jeffrey Street and had to jump across the road to bigger premises at no.3 Jeffrey Street. It is a lovely bright studio with an amazing collection of art from floor to ceiling which is also available for sale.
Currently working on my new website, hoping it to be live end of December 2012. Stay tuned!
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