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8 Stories Behind Tattoos

It comes in all different shapes and sizes, with lines that curve and swirl into intricate designs on smooth skin. No matter the tattoo’s color, price, or location, each symbol etched onto the body has a distinctive designated memory behind it. Here are some UT students sharing their sentiments behind their various unique tattoos. 

  1. Anonymous, 18, English Major

Photo By Matilda Herrera Ramirez

“The first one I got was when my best friend in high school came, and I wanted to do something really cool with her. I knew I wanted a certain place that was not very noticeable so I  got it on my side. It hurt like hell, but it’s worth it. It’s like a little artistic interpretation of a flower, like a green carnation. I’m a big Oscar Wilde fan, and I read somewhere that he was a little amateur botanist, so that was cool.”

“So this semester, I went before class started with my buddies, and I got one on the other side, and it’s a little olive branch. It’s cute, you know, Greek mythology. My friends told me to stop getting plant tattoos because I’m going to turn them into a garden. But I think that’s a great thing to turn into. So I’m not really mad about it.”

2. Anonymous, 19, Business Major

Photo By Matilda Herrera Ramirez

“I have one tattoo that I got at the beginning of the semester. I got it when my best friend came up from Baylor. Lillian and I went to a tattoo shop, and we got matching ones: on the back of her neck and mine on my ribs. The significance behind it is that it’s Lillian’s and another friend of ours and my mom’s favorite flowers altogether in a bouquet.”

3. Jasmine Lu, 19, Biology/Chemistry Major

Photo By Matilda Herrera Ramirez

“I got my fox on a moon tattoo first in remembrance of my dad, who passed away over the summer of 2021, and it’s just a way for me to be reminded that he’s in a better place now. The second tattoo is an abstract representation of an hourglass with an arrow through it, meaning that my time on earth is relatively short, so I should make the most of it.”

4. Anna Yu, 20, Design Major

Photo By Matilda Herrera Ramirez

“I got it because it’s a gardenia flower, and they smell really good. My mom used to have bushes with gardenias in the front lawn, and she would pluck one and put it on the head of my bed when I couldn’t fall asleep.”

5. Katie, 19, Psychology Major

Photo By Matilda Herrera Ramirez

“Right now, I have nine tattoos; some of them are kind of stupid, like three little hearts that match two of my best friends and scissors that I got during a Halloween event. Some of them do have a deeper meaning, though. I have a tattoo of Haku, the dragon from the film Spirited Away since it was one of my favorite movies to watch as a kid. I have a hand holding a skull and a white lily to memorialize my dad, who passed away since he loved Shakespeare, and it’s similar to a scene from Hamlet.”

6. Alyza Saenz, 21, Radio-TV-Film Major

Photo By Matilda Herrera Ramirez

“This was my first tattoo, so I wanted to go big. The rose and dagger was a pretty cool design I found online, so I thought it looked pretty cool and wanted to get it on my arm. There was no meaning behind it, and I just thought it would look nice.”

7. Samantha Ortiz, 20, Biochemistry/English Major

Photo By Matilda Herrera Ramirez

“A Friday the 13th design that has a 13 hidden in it: it was my first tattoo. I couldn’t really afford to get tattoos, but I knew it’d be cheaper on Friday the 13th, so I found a place that did cute designs and waited until then. I want to get three Friday the 13th tattoos over time since my favorite numbers are 13 and three.”

8. Ashley Marie Hernandez, 19, Education Major

Photo By Matilda Herrera Ramirez

“I got my tattoo because I wanted to prove I could. The meaning behind it is that I have always been fascinated by knives and my comfort characters tend to be really skilled with daggers and knives, so it felt natural. It also became an inside joke between me and my brothers who always want me to ‘have a knife on me’.” 

Whether getting a tattoo was a spontaneous decision or a well-thought-out  plan, everyone’s experience in getting one is special. Some hold deeper significance and implications, while others are simply random and meaningless. Tattoos are special in the way they allow anyone to express themselves artistically, and the UT campus is filled with students with a story to tell. 

Featured Image By Matilda Herrera Ramirez

Behind the scenes with Lanicrochets

Colorful checkered bags, bright colored tops, soft plushies, and embroidered hats line the shelves. At Lanicrochets, dreams and wishes become a reality in the form of eye-catching and handmade crocheted goods. The brains behind the whole operation, Kaylani Addison, a business honors freshman, manages this full-time business on top of being a student.

“My business is focused around crochet apparel and accessories, and I (also) do like custom orders,” Addison said. “(It’s) just a different way to look at fashion.”

Addison started crocheting at 10-years-old but didn’t seriously consider turning her passion into a business until moving to campus.

“I just think Austin is the perfect place to do something like a startup. The market here is perfect for something that is quirky and different,” Addison said. “I decided to capitalize; maybe I should turn this into a full-fledged business.”

Addison had no set goals or concrete plans for the business’s future when she first started. Instead, she was just going with the flow, one step at a time. 

“It was kind of difficult to start because I don’t know, what is a business? What am I? What am I going to do? And how do I start,” Addison said. “I didn’t really have anything, just a couple of hats I wanted to sell at the market.”

Instead of having predetermined items to produce at certain times, Addison relied on finding inspiration from her surroundings or personal interest to invent new product ideas.

“Everything I make is kind of just on a whim. If I see something I like on Pinterest, I’ll try to replicate it or do my own version of it,” Addison said. 

Though Addison first with only her skills and a couple of hats, she now has a whole booth filled with a variety of products, her own logo, and a growing Instagram page where she does commission work. When asked about thoughts of expanding the business outside of college, she explains that it’s certainly a possibility she has in mind. She is open to the idea of evolving in the future.

“You never know how it’s gonna go. I thought it was just gonna be a small thing when I first started to do it,” Addison said. “I would love to do it full time, but I am just exploring my options at this point. There is no right or wrong way to do it, just have fun.”

Featured Image By Reo Lee