Today is the Friday the 13th before Halloween, so you'd better get your permanent bling while you can. Over the past century, this day — so taboo in some circles — has evolved into an unofficial holiday at American tattoo stores, which often offer inexpensive tattoos from an artist's flash sheet. This means that Friday the 13th could be your lucky day if you visit one of the six stores on this list, or any of the others celebrating the tradition.
Although some tattoo shops choose not to participate in Friday the 13th because they don't like the concept of a "discount" tattoo, others celebrate the day by creating artwork on as many people as they can. But just because you might get a deal on a tattoo, don't expect a cheap version: These six Denver shops won't be skimping on design or quality.
Marion Street Tattoo Gallery
2823 East Colfax Avenue
To celebrate Friday the 13th in style, Marion Street Tattoo is offering a $20 deal for any of the designs on this year's flash sheet. Marion Street always makes a new design sheet whenever the holiday comes around, and often sees as many as 200 customers. "It's our ode to the classic Friday the 13th special," says artist Nate Stephens. "We feel it's a great opportunity to give back to the community and to our clients who want to get tattooed in a reputable shop but may not be able to afford it on a regular basis." As with most spots, the Marion Street deal is cash-only and first come, first served. The shop is open from 9 a.m. to 10 p.m.
609 East 13th Avenue
Landmark Tattoo's artists create some unique designs. "I looked to the master of mixing the occult with superstition and humor," artist Kevin Hennessy says of the flash sheets above. "Flipped through the Lakra line book and redrew some gems." Catch Hennessy and the other talented artists of Landmark on Friday, when the shop opens at noon. Prices start at $40.
Ritual Tattoo Gallery
4241 Jason Street
Most of the artists at Ritual Tattoo Gallery are participating in Friday the 13th deals, offering tattoos starting at $60 and going up from there.
Bound by Design
1332 East Colfax Avenue
Watch the crowds come out in droves to this beloved Colfax tattoo shop. The flash sheet above is a sample from the 2016 Friday the 13th special. Each artist will have a range of flash designs and prices this year; the cost is $60 and $100. The shop will take walk-ins until around 7 p.m.
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1510 East Colfax Avenue
Friday the 13th is going to be a "Get what you get" drawing system at Lifetime, which means at the lowest price, $60, your tattoo design will just be luck of the draw. Every artist is participating, and for customers, it's first come, first served. "We're just trying to do something different," says artist Kirk Wilken. "There's some mystery to it, where you don't know exactly what you're getting." The pieces are bigger than most flash pieces that shops will offer on this holiday. If you fear the random nature, don't fret: Lifetime will let you have your choice for a small up-charge.
End of Days
2024 East Colfax Avenue
The artists at End of Days are among the most respected in the local game and range wildly in style. This Friday, tattoos will be available, based on flash sheets, each for $50. The shop will not take walk-in appointments or consultations, because the eight artists working today expect to be busy.