Holland Tattoo shop brings body art to business district

By Stephen Kloosterman

The Holland Sentinel

HOLLAND, Mich. (AP) -- When it comes to his line of work, Brett Giroux is all business about addressing the preconceived notions.

"We're here to break that stereotype," he said. "We don't attach ourselves to paraphernalia, drugs, criminal activity. I don't hire people who have a drug problem."

Giroux's Pincushn's Custom Tattooing and Body Piercing is the first business of its kind in downtown Holland. He recently opened doors at the College Avenue location, next to Lemonjello's coffee shop.

"Occasionally, we're getting a little nose in the air, but most everybody has been positive," he said.

Giroux is quick to point out Pinchushn's has been in business in Holland for more than five years.

"I came to Holland in 2000 and started working at the only tattoo studio in town," he said. Today, there are about five studios in town, he added.

Five years ago, in February, he started his own place.

"It was me, and my daughter helped out at the counter," he said. He has since added four staff members who are licensed and regulated by the state.

Unlike some tattoo shops, which focus on replicating or tracing guides, "everybody who works here is an actual artist," Giroux said. "Ninety percent of what we do are original, custom designs."

He has been trying to move Pinchushn's into the downtown for years.

"A good deal of our clientele comes from the college," he said. Now he's nearly within a literal stone's throw of Hope College's Haworth Inn and Conference Center.

Other business-owner tenants on College Avenue supported his bid to rent the space, formerly occupied by the Bag Lady Purse Store.

"It's kind of a group effort," Giroux said. "I think some people want to see some change and progress, and sometimes even the businesses we don't like are change and progress."

Among his supporters is Juan "Ponch" Magallan, owner of College Avenue's Gregor Dog restaurant since October.

"I think it'll bring more business to this side of Eighth Street," he said. "I've seen an increase in business. I've noticed more foot traffic."

Right now, Giroux is working to get a sign approved for the front of his business.

"We have to jump through hoops and follow rules just like any other legitimate business," he said.

Published: Wed, May 30, 2012


  1. No comments
Sign in to post a comment »