How To Start a Tattoo Shop

Tattoos have been gaining in popularity over the last few decades, with people from all walks of life choosing to ink themselves with a variety of designs, words and meanings.  If you're interested in starting a tattoo shop, it might be easier than you think to get started.

First, you'll need to decide on a location for the shop.  As the saying goes, location is everything, and you'll want to find one that's convenient for you, your customers, and is affordable.  Check your local paper for commercial real estate for sale or rent, or hire a realtor to help you with the search.  Once a location is secured, it's time for supplies, decorating and artists.

If you don't already have a tattoo supplier, try searching the Internet for one that can supply your guns, needles, ink, paper, safety supplies and anything else that's needed.   From an Internet search engine, type in "wholesale tattoo supplies" to find a reputable dealer that can provide all of your needed accessories.  You might need to find a separate supplier for safety needs, like gloves and sanitizer, needle disposal, lubricant and the like.  You'll also need to research and find a supplier for furniture such a carts or shelves for supplies and tattoo chairs for both the artist and the customer.  You'll also need a cash register and credit card machine, if you plan on accepting payment electronically.

After a location and supplies have been obtained, next it's time to fill your shop with knowledgeable, reputable artists that can represent the artistic vision you have for your studio.  An ad in the paper or on the Internet, along with word of mouth about a new shop and open positions, should give you plenty of people to interview.  Make sure you check their portfolio of work to ensure they bring the type of business you're looking for, and that they're certified by the Board of Health.

You now have supplies, artists and furniture - it's time now to put up some flash designs of your artists' work and have your shop inspected by the Board of Health to ensure it's up to health code standards.  Couches and chairs for the waiting room, along with magazines and possibly pillows, plus wall hangings and a sign for your shop advertising the name of your studio complete the ensemble.  Now it's time to get the word out and start attracting customers!


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