Ink and Iron: New tattoo shop opens on Adams Street.Written by Matt Liasse | | firstname.lastname@example.org
When he was young, Mike Klein would go door to door to sell his drawings of Donald Duck. Now he has his own studio, Ink and Iron Tattoo Parlour, and since its opening Sept. 6 he’s inked almost 50 people.
Klein and friend Shane Gontarz opened the “boutique-style tattoo shop” together with the vision of changing the face of Toledo’s tattoo scene.
“I think the biggest thing is the Toledo tattoo scene has been kind of ruled by one shop,” Klein said. “I want them to still be successful [but] overall I just want to bring a new flavor to the tattoo scene.”
Klein concentrates on the art. He wants to help potential customers make educated decisions when it comes to a tattoo. Klein and Gontarz both said it’s important to sit and talk with customers during appointments.
“Being able to have an open floor space and have our customers feel engaged in every step of the artistic process ensures they are getting a piece and an experience that they will cherish and enjoy for a lifetime,” Gontarz said in an email.
Gontarz is currently attending The Ohio State University and will move to Toledo in December. Gontarz handles the business for the shop while Klein does the art.
“I cannot wait to be in Toledo full time and become immersed in the culture,” Gontarz said. “I can say without any hesitation that I have not experienced a city in Ohio that truly has more pride than Toledo, Ohio. And this is coming from a Cleveland boy so that means a lot.”
Klein wants every customer to be 100 percent satisfied unlike he was when he got his first tattoo. At the age of 17, he got a cross between his shoulder blades that he said is crooked.
“It’s something that’s on your body forever for it to just be an ‘eh’ experience [isn’t good enough],” he said.
Klein is also concentrating on the longevity of his clients’ tattoos.
“I guarantee my tattoos. If your tattoo doesn’t look 100 percent like you want it and you come back, I will fix it up for free,” Klein said. “It’s my name attached to your tattoo as well as yours.”
The name of the shop was inspired by Proverbs 27:17: “As iron sharpens iron, so one person sharpens another.”
“I always thought that was such a cool thing,” Klein said. “The integration of society is really the iron. The more people that come through the door and really feel the philosophy, the better we’ll get.”
Klein, originally from Maumee, looks forward to growing in the local community. The shop is currently collaborating with other local businesses.
On Oct. 24, Klein will do zombie makeovers for the Adams Street Zombie Pub Crawl.
Also in collaboration with that event, for the month of October the studio will be doing official zombie tattoos for $30. These tattoos are good for drink specials during the Zombie Pub Crawl. Klein hopes for a long-lasting partnership between the shop and the event.
The studio also works with the Glass City Rollers roller derby team and starting in November, local musicians will play at the shop.
“Everybody down here has been really receptive about the shop opening,” Klein said. “A lot of that comes from being from Maumee. I’m not some guy that moved here from out of town trying to make a quick buck. This is my roots and I’m really branching out from that point.”
Ink and Iron Tattoo Parlour is located at 1505 Adams St. For more information, visit inkandirontattoo.com.