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Love — and the buzz of tattoo guns — was in the air Thursday at Everlasting Impressions Tattoo & Body Piercings as the downtown Wilson shop celebrated Valentine’s Day with $14 ink.
“I’ve seen work they’ve done, so I know the quality is up there,” said Amanda Norris, the second person in line Thursday. “The cost is great. I think it is a great special.”
The shop hosted a similar event in 2017 on Friday the 13th with spooky tattoos for just $13. Shop owner Adam Kitchen said he’s been constantly asked to do it again and Valentine’s Day seemed like the perfect opportunity to offer the flat-rate ink with a love theme.
“The Friday the 13th tattoos were more on the darker side, so I figured this would be fun, especially for couples,” Kitchen said. “All of the designs are $14 with changes $14 each, so you could add your husband’s name or a date and get it in red instead of black and it still would only be like $42 when normally our tattoos start at $50.”
Brittany Bullock’s first two tattoos were during Friday the 13th events, so she was the first in line Thursday at 9 a.m. Kitchen inked a simple Minnie Mouse head on Bullock’s hand.
“I love it,” she said after he finished. The 22-year-old Lucama woman said she hoped to celebrate the holiday with her boyfriend after his workday ended.
The heart 55-year-old Delois Horne had inked on her chest was the Wilson woman’s first tattoo.
“It stung a little bit, but I withstood it because I wanted this,” she said. “It was OK. It stung when he first started, but after I got used to him digging in, it got a little better.”
Like Horne, stay-at-home mom Norris headed down to the shop with a friend. Norris and Christy Reaman both decided to get love tattooed in script.
“It is beautiful,” Reaman said after seeing the finished product on her wrist. “I’m glad we did it.”
Kitchen said he hopes the event brings in some new customers and gives people, especially couples, a lasting memory.
“I know when I first started out in the industry like 18 years ago, tattooing was for rebellious people. It was more for bikers, military and prisoners, but now it is so mainstream with movies and TV shows,” he said. “Businesses also are starting to get more lenient. Before your tattoos had to be hidden, but now more businesses are allowing them.”
Kitchen and artist Teddi Prosser tattooed all day Thursday, taking a moment to stretch as other staff sanitized the stations for the next customers.
“I like that I can use my machine to help people express themselves,” Prosser said.