What I Did This Weekend (And It’s Not About Clothes)

I’m not the most terribly exciting person. I work from home, I wear a lot of comfy clothes (because I’m always at home), I watch a lot of Netflix, and I read in my bed. But I do have one small habit that is sort of cool: I LOVE TATTOOS!!

I always said I was getting one as soon as I turned 18. Well, I waited until the summer I was leaving for college to get my first one, and it’s been a steady descent into tattooed-ness ever since. Recently I can across a tattoo on Pinterest and was like “I. Must. Have.This.” So I sent it over to Sarah, my future sister-in-law. She’s a badass tattoo artist (and artist in general). She fell in love too, and we decided to tattoo it the next day. Seriously all of this happened in like 16 hours from Friday night to Saturday morning. So what is it you ask???

Stencil

 

Here’s the stencil. It’s a Dia de Los Muertos owl! That’s right, I finally got myself an owl tattoo. I’ll explain all of the symbolism below, but you already know of my owl obsession. Once she got the stencil on, we both stared at it for a minute and realized it was a lot more intricate that we had originally thought. I admit, I panicked. It wasn’t the size, though this was by far the largest tattoo I’ve gotten. It was more of the fact that it was so detailed which meant lots of time in the chair…… which meant it was going to HURT. But I was undaunted!! So we began……

Sarah working

 

Sarah is a freaking pro. She played great music, we chatted, and she didn’t mind that I was on my phone texting and playing games to keep my mind off of the discomfort. The first hour flew by and we finished the outline. Definitely time for a break!

Outline done

 

Once the outline was complete, I already could tell I was going to love this tattoo. We named him Alfonso the Owl, and I was so eager to see how he looked fully finished. So we headed back in to do the shading…..

I admit, I had to take a break half way through the shading. This was a ROUGH tattoo. The area was sensitive, we were going over scar tissue, and the closer it got to crook of elbow, the worse it was. But Sarah said I was a trooper! No moving, no flinching, no “Ows!” or anything. So after about three and half hours……

Finished product

 

Alfonso was finished!!!! We were both so freaking happy and agreed that he was pretty much the greatest looking owl ever. I’m beyond excited that he’s living on my arm now. This brings my total up to 10. That’s right, I’m finally in the double digits!

So this tattoo has a ton of meaning for me. First, it’s the first tattoo I’ve gotten from my soon-to-be sister in law. Sarah has done a lot of work for her friends, and my fiance has a couple of tattoos from her as well. But this one will always be special because it’s my first from her. As for the tattoo itself, it holds a lot of symbolism. First, the owl. Yes, everyone knows I love owls. I wear them, I hoard them, I decorate my house with them. But they were also a favorite of my grandma Carmen, who collected them her whole life. She died when I was 2 months old so I never met her. But I guess great minds think alike!

Second, the Day of the Dead motif. Dia de Los Muertos is a holiday to honor and remember our loved ones that have died. To me, it’s a time to honor my father and my step-father, both of whom are gone. In addition, Dia de Los Muertos will be the theme of our wedding – Til Death Do Us Part. So putting all of that together makes this tattoo not only freaking gorgeous, but incredibly personal to me.

I’m in for an uncomfortable week of healing, but it’ll totally be worth it. If you are ever here in the Austin area and find yourself in need of a tattoo, go see Sarah at Mystery City Tattoo. She’ll do a spectacular job!!

Do you have any tattoos you’d like to share? Post them in the comments on Facebook!!

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