tatoos on bridesmaids

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jun 26, 2010 10:23 AM Go to message in response to: CatStandish

Dear CS,

"...if I got a job at a conservative business which expected women to wear skirts/dresses...I'd have to invest in the tattoo cover. Mine is on the back of the calf of my right leg."

That would not work in our office. Makeup can and does wear off during the day.
We do permit women to wear nice slacks, though, so you could work here if you wore slacks every day. Unfortunately, there are occasional client meetings were women are best represented in skirted suits. You could handle that if you had very opague stockings, which looks weird in summer.



Similarly, we do not allow piercings in places other than earlobes. We do not permit a piercing to be covered with a band-aid. You cannot come to work in our office, every day, with a band-aid on your chin, unless for some reason it's medically necessary. Covering a cosmetic piercing is not medically necessary.

Remember, this kind of thing rarely comes up in our employee and job candidate population. Most of the people who are suited to work in a company like ours already know not to do things like get tattoos or weird piercings on visible parts of the body. It's just part of the corporate culture. Also remember, there are plenty of well-paying, challenging, interesting jobs in other industries with less restrictive corporate cultures.

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Rizie Posts : 5 Registered: 8/12/08
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jun 26, 2010 12:44 PM Go to message in response to: wackywed1011

I am a bride getting married in February. I have 3 bridesmaids with tatoos and I have them too. I am asking that tatoos on the arms be covered with makeup. I want all of mine covered as this is a formal wedding and I think it would be inappropriate. However, there are tats on their backs, that I am not requiring to be covered and their dresses are halter. So, I am requesting that our arms and forearms are covered so they are not visible.

"There is no more lovely, charming, relationship, communication or company, than a loving marriage"

-Martin Luther King-

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CatStandish Posts : 2,766 Registered: 6/20/08
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jun 26, 2010 12:52 PM Go to message in response to: auntofthebride

my point is...I would not expect the dress code to change for me. I would adhere to it. If that meant wearing slacks except for those specific meetings which required a skirt, where I would wear cover up on my tattoo and then changing back to slacks afterwards--or planning on reapplying frequently (or even putting a bandage over it and wearing nylons.

However, I also did not do this at 18. I did it at 32...when I already knew where I planned to work and what would and would not be acceptable. If I were interested in joining a culture that required more conservative appearance, I'd have placed my tattoo where it would always be covered unless I chose to wear shorts. :)

I knew a tattoo was permanent. And I had wanted one since I was 16. I figured if I still wanted it at 32, I had put plenty of thought into it. It was not a matter of waking up one saturday morning and thinking "I think I'll get a tattoo today"

The second tattoo was more of a spur thing--but not because I thought of it at a spur of the moment, but because my MOH and I went on vacation together. I did not want to take up HER vacation time getting a tattoo for me. But the day before she left, she asked if I'd go with her to get a tattoo. On neither occasion was the tattoo something I had not thought through.

My tattoo is a heart shaped vine with a purple rose, and a monarch butterfly in the middle. It's simple. To me, it represents transformation and life, perserverance. What it would represent to someone else...that's another story entirely.

And while I do not object to the corporate culture requesting it to be covered up, I would object to a bride asking me to cover it up. With the company, I'm there to do a job...and while doing that job, I represent them. Therefore, my image represents THEIR image.

But for a wedding, I don't feel like I need to represent the bride's image. I feel like I need to support the bride on her wedding....but that does not mean I should lose my identity either. My friends know about my tattoos. If they have a problem with me showing them as a member of the bridal party, then they should not ask me to be IN the bridal party. (And if they were that superficial...I don't think they'd really be my friend anyway)

Misty

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CatStandish Posts : 2,766 Registered: 6/20/08
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jun 26, 2010 12:55 PM Go to message in response to: Rizie

Ritzie... then why didn't you choose a dress that would cover the arms? Or at least also pick out a shawl. I'm sorry... I respect that you're not asking them to do something you're not doing yourself, but really...you should have picked a dress that did that--rather than telling them to cover themselves with make up.


Misty

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jun 26, 2010 1:08 PM Go to message in response to: CatStandish

Dear CS,

"I would object to a bride asking me to cover it up."

I agree with you on that, providing you had the tattoo before being asked to be a bridemaid.

The considerate, reliable bridesmaid would not get a tattoo in a visible spot (shoulder, arms) between being asked and W-Day. The bride who already knows you have a tattoo should take that into consideratoin before asking you in the first place. If she's that concerned about beautiful photos, she can go out and hire actors to play the parts of the wedding party, and not bother her "imperfect" friends.

" except for those specific meetings which required a skirt"

In our company, that would be rare. For my own attire, I personally feel more professional in a skirted suit. When meeting with top-level customers, their lawyers and bankers, yes, I wear a skirted suit. That's my own taste in business clothing. Another woman in a very professional pants outfit would be fine. On days when I am in the office, but no top-level meetings, I usually wear a skirt and nice blouse. (The men, typically, wear dress slacks and business shirts, but no ties.) That's just my own personal taste. I feel more comfortable in a skirt while doing business.

I'll add that, again in my own personal opinion, really top-level business attire for woman should include opague stockings with the skirted suit. I have a navy blue skirted suit, and wear navy stockings and navy pumps with it. With that, and my reading glasses, I look like a rich librarian.

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CatStandish Posts : 2,766 Registered: 6/20/08
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jun 26, 2010 3:40 PM Go to message in response to: auntofthebride

Aunt...

Fair point about the visible tattoo being inked prior to being asked to be a bridesmaid. If I were to have it inked AFTERWARDS and before the wedding, I'd ask the bride whether she wanted it covered or not. (And depending on how long between being asked and the wedding date, I would likely wait. 6 months, yes...2 years, no...I just don't think I should have to put my life on hold for a wedding that is that far away.)

Same would be true of any drastic appearance changes -- like going from waist length hair to a chin length bob (unless this friend also knew that I was growing my hair for a specific reason....like wigs. I do know people who grow their hair out and then cut it drastically...and have done this many times :)

LOL about the librarian disguise!

Misty

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KCI Posts : 150 Registered: 3/30/09
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jun 28, 2010 12:49 AM Go to message in response to: CatStandish

I have a tattoo on my ankle. I'm in two upcoming weddings, both BM dresses are knee length and neither bride has asked me to cover it. If they asked me to I'd be disappointed, but I would do it. I specifically chose ankle over shoulder so it doesn't show when I eventually get married (even though it is now part of me).

It's a celtic knot filled in with mine and my three brothers' birthstone colors. I'm very close to my brothers so it means a lot to me.

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MsDenuninani Posts : 3,962 Registered: 3/16/07
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jun 29, 2010 11:10 AM Go to message in response to: auntofthebride

Re-reading some of this thread, I'm reminded of an article I recently read concerning dress codes (and some lawsuits that have arisen because of them).

Dress codes run the gamut -- and many would require you to wear make-up, cover up tatoos, cover up scars, and cover up birthmarks, wear skirt suits, etc. And if you've got a slammin body, by the way, there's companies out there who would forbid you to wear pencil skirts with turtlenecks (which would pretty much take me out of the running -- that's my favorite autumn outfit!). And I'm sure there's a mess of litigation out there where companies are requiring people to lose weight.

The other day, I found out the Ritz Carlton requires its employees to have no big hair. I'm curious as to what they'd think of my 'do -- I'm a black woman who wears my hair natural. I hate pulling it back -- and when I do, I look like a college student going to the gym.

I think that, as AOTB mentioned earlier, certain people are attracted to certain industries, and in that way you find a match. It annoys me that anyone would see my tattoo as evidence of bad judgment, but I suppose it cannot be avoided. And since I've never sought employment from those types of companies (suits give me the heebie-jeebies) and never sought friendships with people who care about these kind of things, I can shrug my shoulders on the whole conversation.

Anyways. . .

As for the bridesmaid question, it seems to me that if you care about her tattoo, you're someone whose choosing a bridesmaid for reasons I don't understand. You're more likely picking someone for symbolic reasons (family member, for example) or aesthetic purposes than because you truly care for them. And I've never understood that, really.

Okay, that's my 2 cents for this year.

__________________________________________

"I'd hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, or insanity, but they've always worked for me." Hunter S. Thompson

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Agape14 Posts : 201 Registered: 12/31/08
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jun 29, 2010 12:32 PM Go to message in response to: MsDenuninani

I remember reading this thread in its original version. Glad to see the debate continues =)

Ms.D, can you share that article? I'd love to know the logic behind the "no pencil-skirt/turtleneck" dress code. Seems ridiculous to me.

I dress fairly conservatively (always a blazer or nice sweater, no cleavage, no bare shoulders, etc)and work in a professional business environment, but I almost never wear skirts now, regardless of the level of meeting. But that's just my personal preference.

I do however have my nose pierced and until relatively recently also had my labret pierced (under lip). It's NEVER been a problem at work, and like I said, I've always been in a professional business environment. As I've gotten older and progressed in my career, I chose to remove one of the piercings, but when I was hired a few years ago for my latest job, they chose me with nose and labret piercing intact, because they valued what I could bring to the organization, not because I looked a certain way. And I have zero plans to get rid of my nose piercing for the foreseable future and would be offended if someone decided to make it an issue. I honestly see very little difference between nose and ear piercings, although that could be a cultural thing...

 

 

~~Life's tough, wear a cup~~

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jun 29, 2010 1:15 PM Go to message in response to: Agape14

Ladies,

" they chose me with nose and labret piercing intact, because they valued what I could bring to the organization, not because I looked a certain way. "

This came up about two years ago in our company.

We had a guy who was... quirky. He dressed nicely enough, but had long hair and a long untrimmed beard. He also was a heavy smoker and took LOTS of smoke breaks. There were a few other weirdnesses. He refused to released his home phone number to anyone in the company, including his boss, and refused to carry a cell phone. If he was not physically present in the office, he was absolutely incommunicado.

He did a great job - really good. When I look at program code, I can immediately recognize his work because his code is much better than the others' code.

He got fired.

My best take on the subject was that he was "one quirk over the line". Bosses are willing to over look a bit of weirdness, but when it gets too weird, they have to say "is it really worth it?". In this guy's case, it came to not be really worth it. He was just too weird. He did a great job, but was just a bit too weird.

In the situation quoted above with the facial piercing, it could be the boss said "A little quirky, but does a good job." My best suggestion is to be careful about pushing the limits. You could find yourself "one quirk over the line" just like my former co-worker did.

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MsDenuninani Posts : 3,962 Registered: 3/16/07
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jun 29, 2010 2:36 PM Go to message in response to: Agape14

Here's the article, Agape --

http://www.slate.com/id/2256622/

I have no idea if that will be clickable with all the new website changes, but you should be able to cut and paste, regardless.

__________________________________________

"I'd hate to advocate drugs, alcohol, or insanity, but they've always worked for me." Hunter S. Thompson

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jun 29, 2010 7:40 PM Go to message in response to: MsDenuninani

Ladies,

I hope you all click on the link Ms D provided, as it is a well-written, balanced article.

I have a few comments.

"Her bosses eventually demanded that she revamp—or, rather, de-vamp—her wardrobe: They banned tight pants, pencil skirts, high heels, and clingy turtlenecks. "

They don't make it clear if Citibank banned the sexy clothes for just this one employee or for everyone. I might add, in passing, that in the past year or so I've noticed that the employees in the Citibank branches were I do business look like they are adhering to a strict dress code. (Grey / neutral jackets, dark colored shirts and blouses.)

If this one drop-dead gorgeous employee would have come to me for advice, friend-to-friend, I would have suggested she make a sincere effort to tone it down. When you walk into the office, people should think "She's here to work", not "She's here to get laid".

The third paragraph from the end starts with

"In the end, dress and grooming codes are just another job requirement—no different from rules about how employees should greet and interact with customers—and they should be evaluated as such."

This part I especially agree with. A fair dress code, applied across the board, can result in the "egalitarian counterweight" as discussed in the article. It removes inequality of one's upbringing, past history, parental training, and provides a fair and equal platform for all employees to succeed.

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Agape14 Posts : 201 Registered: 12/31/08
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jun 30, 2010 9:42 AM Go to message in response to: MsDenuninani

Thanks for sharing that Ms. D! Very interesting.

Assuming the woman's claims are true, my interpretation of the article is that the "hottie" was specifically targeted for her wardrobe, while the "notties" were not reprimanded for wearing more revealing clothing. If that's actually the case then I think there's a problem.

But in general I'm supportive of fair a dress code (especially in heavy customer-service areas), as long as it's made clear from the beginning and that it applies to employees equally. But I am also of "that generation" that sees some things as outdated and unnecessary (e.g. I never wear nylons, even with a skirt. I'm indifferent about open-toed shoes. And as mentioned, I'm fairly liberal about my view on tasteful piercings).

The basic dresscode advice I follow is from my mom: Look at the people around you, above you, and below you (in terms of work hierarchy). And dress for where you want to go/what you want to achieve.

 

 

~~Life's tough, wear a cup~~

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auntofthebride Posts : 9,354 Registered: 4/2/06
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jun 30, 2010 11:09 AM Go to message in response to: Agape14

Dear Agape,

"I'm indifferent about open-toed shoes."

I don't particulary give a hoot about open-toed shoes, but in our office they are not allowed for safety reasons. Stub your toe, and it could be a Workman's Comp claim.

I'm always looking for sandals with closed toes. I have two pairs of Skeechers that are totally OK in the office, when business casual is appropriate.

" Look at the people around you, above you, and below you (in terms of work hierarchy). And dress for where you want to go/what you want to achieve. "

Mom was right.

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Rin2313 Posts : 15 Registered: 5/3/10
Re: tatoos on bridesmaids
Posted: Jul 2, 2010 11:32 PM Go to message in response to: auntofthebride

I just read through every single one of these posts. I find the topic interesting. As a disclaimer: I do not have a tattoo. However three of my closest friends have at least one tattoo, as does my sister. I do not like tattoos, but for no philosophical reason. I just think they are ugly.

To me, there are appropriate places to bare tattoos. And there are places that are inappropriate. Most work places fall under this category. I, when I graduate from school, will be working in one of the places that it is inappropriate. I will be a teacher.

I think it is variable as to whether or not tattoos are appropriate at a wedding. Some couples may decide to embrace this. Tattoos will not be appropriate at my wedding. Any of my bridesmaids with visible tattoos will be asked to cover them up for the ceremony and formal pictures. If not with makeup, then their dress or shawl will do it. It is important to me that certain people support me through this time--but I also believe that these people should be considerate enough to respect my wishes on that--not to be a bridezilla or snooty--is about my fiance and myself. I know that much of my family would be distracted by visible tattoos.

Much of the discussion on here is all about trying to prove or reason away people's beliefs. Trying to find flaws in someone's argument. I'm not going to try to back up my opinion. There really isn't any logical reason behind it. I just don't like them and think they are ugly. In my experience, people tend to get them just because they want a tattoo. This includes my closest friends. But I am in my twenties and I guess that's the popular mentality.

I feel that a tattoo is a choice--one that a person must live with. When you make this decision, you have to be willing to adapt. You made that decision. I understand that you may feel that a tattoo is "part of you." Many people have to adapt their bodies due to situations. For example, I have a very large chest that is completely au naturale. This is part of me; I am not ashamed of my body. But there is a time for flaunting what my mama gave me and there is a time for keeping it covered. Is it annoying? Sometimes, yes. I have to be careful in what clothes I buy; I cannot wear certain garments. But its an adaptation I have to make. Whether a woman's is large due to genetics or a surgeon, she must learn to adapt.

Just my two sense I guess.

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