.Ink Look: For the Love of Tattoos

On the day after my birthday, we got matching tattoos—see picture—and it got me thinking, about tattoos in general, and what a phenomenal fashion statement they are.

I have—as last I counted—nearly 40 tattoos. I love every single one, especially the three I did myself with a sewing needle and India ink. Since I was very small I’ve known I’d have a significant amount of tattoos, and used to tell my mother to prepare herself. She was always sure I’d change my mind, but 30 years and 40 tattoos later, we’ve come to an understanding. 

Before I dive into tattoo shops I love in Sonoma and Marin County, two things. First, as this is the literary roundup edition, my favorite tattooed character in literature is without doubt Queequeg from “Moby Dick,” whose tattoos are modeled after the traditional Māori Moko patterns—closely linked with an individual’s identity, as are tattoos everywhere. Second, tattoos are magnificent. Despite any judgment Puritan-influenced culture might try to place on them. I still sometimes get disapproving looks, or the occasional comment about what a shame it is that I’ve chosen to get tattoos. To this I lovingly say, thanks but no thanks! Catch up. 

So, if you’ve been considering it, go get tatted! It’s tremendously on trend at the moment, FINALLY. 

Here are two shops per county to start with.

Sonoma County

Hidden Coast Tattoo


Amazing ambiance and incredible artists, including Kara Ferro—a rad artist and badass woman. Go support her!

Faith Tattoo

Santa Rosa

Phenomenal shop owned by one Nick Paine, an all-around stellar human being. Faith is philanthropically-inclined—they just did a drive supporting The Living Room, a shelter for abused or struggling women and children—and full of talent. 

Marin County 

Spider Murphy’s 

San Rafael 

In operation since 1996, this shop is as fun to be in as rib pieces are agonizing to sit for. Go get some alchemical flash from Pavel Brodsky. 

Aces Over Eights


A great shop in downtown Petaluma! Aces is a sweet vibe, and artist Danielle Holyoak does phenomenal butterflies. 

This is all for now, my future-tattooed darlings.

Looking lovely as ever,




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