Apprentice at Easton Avenue’s Revolver Tattoo offers special price for those willing to get piercings under professional supervision.
Rutgers College alumna Ashley Carment needs your help. The night of homecoming, she pinned up fliers around College Avenue promoting her new piercing apprenticeship at Revolver Tattoo, a piercing and tattoo shop located on Easton Avenue.
With one year of piercing experience under her belt, Carment hopes the fliers will encourage volunteers to come to Revolver and let her pierce them for the price of the jewelry only, with no cost for the piercing itself. The jewelry can be as inexpensive as $15 as opposed to the normal prices of piercing, which range up to $80.
Each piercing Carment does is supervised by Revolver’s professional piercer, Todd DiPopolo.
“Initially, I didn’t know what to expect about the advertisement for volunteers,” Carment said. “I thought people would think it was a joke, but I’ve been receiving a good response of customers.”
So far, Carment has done a variety of different piercings on volunteers, including earlobes, ear cartilage, nostril, eyebrow and lip. She will continue to learn numerous types of piercings, DiPopolo said.
Working six days a week, Carment is taking walk-ins for piercing.
“I am focusing all my attention on where I am right now,” Carment said. “My goal for this apprenticeship is to get better at what I do and continue learning.”
“Having an apprentice is a learning experience in itself,” DiPopolo said. “I try to teach her everything I know and share with her my experiences in my passion for piercing.”
As DiPopolo’s first apprentice, Carment has at least one volunteer every day and a steady flow of business.
Rutgers College sophomore Asmi Patel volunteered to have her nose pierced by Carment for the price of $25.
“I was initially drawn into the shop because of the amazing price for a piercing,” Patel said. “Ashley made the experience very relaxing by explaining the procedure thoroughly and attentively answering all my questions. She was confident in her work and did a great job.”
Previously an indoor produce market facility, Revolver Tattoo serves customers with tattoos and piercings seven days a week. Sandwiched down a narrow hallway between Noodle Gourmet and The Lazy Shopper on Easton Avenue, the shop will have seven working stations, one piercer and five tattoo artists as of next month.
There are two apprentices, Carment and Evan Lindemann, who has been a tattoo apprentice for the past month.
The shop welcomes anyone with interest in different forms of art. Owner Chuck DeNisd described the shop’s plans for further development to include the creation of new sections for clothing sales and an art gallery. While all the clothes will be for purchase, only some artwork will be sold.
“Once we establish the art gallery, we will showcase specific Rutgers students’ artwork on monthly rotations,” DeNisd said.
Piercing apprenticeship regulations are set forth according to the Association of Professional Piercers, which defines the position as “a specific period of guided progress through the basic, intermediate and advanced levels of piercing training,” according to safepiercing.org.
In addition to supervised experience, such as Carment’s, the APP requires apprentices to attend a blood-borne pathogens training class, a first aid/CPR class and learn about sterilization, disinfection, cross-contamination and other safety issues before piercing.