Results tagged “clothing”

09:23 AM
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Very cool to find BoingBoing's feature on MIR, the Russian criminal tattoo fashion company and Needles & Sins advertisers. [Many of you thought it was cool too, and we thank you for sending in the link.] In that post, co-owner Roman Belenky discusses his experience growing up in Russia surrounded by the tattoos and what inspired him to start the clothing line, which I thought was pretty interesting. Here's a taste from that part:

I was working in a tattoo shop and started noticing more and more people were coming in with the [Russian Criminal Tattoo] Encyclopaedia and asking to get an image from the books. We turned them away mostly because the shop was owned by Russians and we didn't think it was a good idea to tattoo most of the stuff from the books on someone that knows close to nothing about that world and sub-culture. At that time I thought it would be cool if I could offer those people a T-shirt with the image as a sort of "consolation prize." Plus a part of me also wanted to spread this fascinating Russian underground art to more people.
On MIR's site and on their Etsy pages, they offer explanations of each design, although some like the one below don't really need much explaining. What the BoingBoing article doesn't mention is their new SHTRAFBAT military-inspired line where most of the items are vintage or reconstructed military surplus clothing silk screened or altered with the Russian designs. You can hit them up by clicking the banner of the right.

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10:26 AM
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Check the top right of this site and you'll see our new advertiser: MIR Russian Criminal Tattoo Designs apparel.

The clothing line was created by two designers from Russia--now living in Brooklyn--who are inspired by the tattoos from the 40s through the 70s found on prisoners in their homeland. While the clothing designs are largely interpretations of the prison art, some stay true to the original tattoos -- but without the the affiliation with any criminal organization or code.

As I mentioned in our holiday gift guide, when I first found out about MIR, I dig the stories and history behind the designs offered on their site. For example, the Lenin portrait with BOP underneath comes with this explanation:

"This particular one was a popular anti-authority tattoo but it has double meaning as do many other tattoos from that era. The letters underneath Lenin spell VOR, the Russian word for thief (which Lenin definitely was). But the letters are also an acronym that stand for Leader of October Revolution. So if an inmate was hassled by administration, he could always state that he was just really patriotic."

I have the "Free Woman" dress in black symbolizing "a woman that did not belong to any gang and followed only her own rules inside and outside of prison."

You can also custom make your own Russian Criminal Tattoo clothes as well. Choose your favorite designs and the item you want them on, send them a message, and you'll get a price quote back.

For standard items, tees & tanks start at $20, dresses at $40, and hoodies (front, back and sleeve design) start at $50.

As I always note, please support our advertisers so we can continue to keep giving ya the tattoo goodness for free.
12:04 PM
rock and rebar 3.jpg I'll admit that Needles and Sins can get pretty snobby with all our highbrow and tattoo couture blah blah because we want to show that white collars cover up colorful tattoos as well. At the same time, we can't neglect our blue collar brethren, so I found a new company who is showing some love with tattoo-inspired tees for Plumbers, Carpenters, Electricians, Masons, Painters, Roofers and Iron workers. 

Rock & Rebar designs work-wear for men "to salute America's craftsmen and union members." The tees are thick, 100% cotton emblazoned with traditional Americana motifs--skulls, daggers, snakes and the like.

On the inside of the collar, where you'd normally find a clothing tag, there's a dedication to James Daniel Butterfly (1973-2007) who died of an accidental overdose. Rock & Rebar is his sister Helen Butterfly's tribute to him.

Helen is a designer who has worked in the industry for over 15 years. When Jimmy died, she wanted to do something positive to recover from the loss, so she created this line to honor her brother as well as her family's blue collar roots.

You can purchase the tees denoting different trades online at Helen also sent me tees to give away to two Needles & Sins winners.

GIVEAWAY:  I have the Electrician and Carpenter tees (both medium but on the large side). The first two people to send me a message at marisa at needlesandsins dotcom -- with a description of your tattoos and what trade you're in -- will get one.

12:49 PM
Underground outfitters, Father Panik Industries, have clothed and bedazzled me for years (and yeah, fancier people), transforming my closet from Banana Republic to (literally) Badass.

And so, it is with great joy that I introduce them as our newest advertiser (and not just because I'm finally getting my money back from them).

Last month, I included them in our gift guide (see here), particularly for their Knuckle Tattoo Gloves with the thumb-flap for winter texting. Coupled with their long-lasting hoodies (which fits nicely under my coat without being bulky), my winter outerwear is more swagga and less sherpa.

Please support Father Panik and our other advertisers because they help keep this site running as well as allow us to put on art shows and hand out free swag at parties and conventions, all free to you.
02:29 PM
matw photo.jpgIt's perfect timing that we're introducing our newest advertiser during our Holiday Gift Guide extravaganza (I never get to use this word enough) because this art-meets-fashion brand has limited edition apparel for the design snobs on your shopping list.

Check Me Against the World clothing company and art crew.

The team comprises Josh Rowan, Sean Baltzell, Adam Taylor, and one of my favorite tattooers and all-around funny guy, Brad Fink owner of Iron Age studios in St.Louis, MO. [Brad also co-owns Fun City Tattoo and Daredevil Tattoo in New York with Michelle Miles.]

The artists of Me Against the World translate tattoo imagery in a way that's unique and refined in their streetwear line, just as they do in their tattoo work. You won't find these clothes amidst the tribal flash tees in Hot Topic. You will find them in boutiques across the country as well as in their hometown of St Louis, where they have also thrown numerous art shows, parties, and events.

Better yet, buy the clothes online. The limited edition tees go for $25 and $28 USD. Check out some designs below.

MATW also offers graphic design and merchandise production for many local and national bands, restaurants, clubs, tattoo studios and events. If you are interested in having them create something for you, you can contact them at matwstl [at] gmail [.] com.

Our Needles & Sins team is thankful for the support of MATW and our other advertisers Devil City Press and Tattoo Culture, which helps take care of our server costs, promo items (more stickers & tees on the way) and our bar tabs so that you can read N+S for free. Please support them for great merch and tattoos.

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12:37 PM
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Japanese tattoo master Horiyoshi III is legendary for his exquisite full body suits, inspiring legions of tattooists worldwide. Naturally, getting an appointment with him is no easy feat, but now you can wear the artwork of Horiyoshi III without the trip to Yokohama.

His new clothing line, Horiyoshi the Third, has released their Men's Fall/Winter 2009 Collection and it's a sexy set of tigers, demons, and other traditional wood block print imagery -- without the bedazzlement of, say, an Audigier monstrosity. The line is produced in Japan on a limited run basis -- a lesson learned perhaps, after seeing how Ed Hardy's licensed designs were bastardized.

I particularly love the subtle extras like the Hanya pendants on the zipper pulls or the fine sleeve detailing. The accessories are also beautifully designed, but with the catalog link broken, I can't tell ya how much they'll hurt your wallet.

Read more about the collection on The Freshness Mag online.

You can purchase the clothing at Alan Bilzerian in Massachusetts and Brown's in London but I also found a number available on like the Dragon Head hoodie, the "Wall Street Ogre" hoodie and the White Snake tee.

Will have more on the Horiyoshi the Third brand, especially when the women's line comes out.
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