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I've had five piercings done so far (two haven't survived) and I've always tended to avoid the most common ones people get done. I don't think those reflect the way I want to look. I've always been bad at expressing my ideas on to paper, so this is my way of creating some art. And besides, it's always a bit fun to take the different approach to something.

So anyway, background out of the way, my next addition was to be a pocketing of which I hadn't seen done before. I can't claim the idea was mine - my friend thought of it and suggested it would look great on me sometime last year, but I didn't trust her to execute it since she'd had no experience! So it has taken a while, but I finally now have the navel pocketing I've been dreaming of.

I knew I'd need an artist with considerable experience, and so when I found out Samppa from Mad Max studios in Finland was making a trip to the UK, I pounced on the opportunity and arranged all the details with him via email and IAM. How it works is that there are two deep piercings on either side of my belly button. These are about 7cm apart at the outer points, and obviously a navel's width apart at the inner points. Instead of making a 7cm industrial navel piercing, the bar is only about 55mm long. It is custom built titanium, made by Samppa to the measurements I gave him through email. Therefore, when inserted in the piercings, the bar doesn't reach to the outer points and remains trapped within the skin, with just a piece of the bar showing where it crosses my navel. Hope that made sense!

Samppa was due to be working at Primitive Origins in Hammersmith, which isn't too far from where I live. But I'd never been there before, so I called on my mate Jamie to come along and show me where it is. I met him at about midday and after we'd watched the Halloween Whizzwood show on tape, we headed off to Hammersmith. Just as we were about to get on the train, I got a call from Samppa's girlfriend to confirm that I'd be showing up. That was a relief since I hadn't heard from them for a few days and was getting a bit worried that something had gone wrong!

Anyway, when we finally got to the studio, Samppa had only just arrived so we waited around for a while so he could get set up and shown around by Spike, the resident piercer there. I think he was supposed to be having lots of people to work on, but I was the only one that had shown up on the day. At least that meant there were no queues to deal with! I was taken downstairs when everything was ready to go, and Jamie came along to take photos.

It took a while getting cleaned up, measured and marked. But once that was done, and confirmed by me, it was time to get pierced! I caught my first glance of the titanium that was soon to be through me and I realised I was about to make a permanent change and I'd never look the same again. I love that feeling! It's exhilarating and it makes me realise how serious I am about getting the work done. The bar was good and thick and the needles looked thicker. Most regular piercings are done at 1.6mm in the UK, and this was only the second time I'd been pierced with anything thicker than that. The other time was my Apadravya piercing and believe me that hurt A LOT!! But I guess that wasn't because of thick needles!! ;) That was done back in February, and the healing still isn't completed, but I'm confident that it's doing just fine and won't interfere with my belly's healing process.

So I lay on the table with my shirt up and my jeans low, all ready to go, with Jamie on standby with the digital camera. Samppa doesn't have the greatest English in the world, so I guess that's why he was quiet. But don't get me wrong, I'm not complaining - I admire people who learn other languages. He definitely knows more English than I know Finnish! (or is it "Suomi"? I'm not sure... like I say, I don't know any of it anyway!)

First came the clamps. I don't have a very flabby belly, especially when I'm lying down, so I knew this was going to be a painful part of the experience. I'd been thinking of ways to make my skin loose and supple, but all I could think of was to stop working out, although that doesn't have much effect anyway! Since each piercing is around 3cm from point to point (about 1 ¼ inches), the clamps had to gather up a lot of skin and had to be held very tight to avoid them slipping off. So it hurt. At least the pain from the clamps drowned out the pain from the needle anyway! I know how it works - you focus on your breathing and the piercer does the rest. Nothing to be afraid of (unless you're having an Apadravya piercing that is...) Once the first piercing had been done, the needle was followed through by the titanium bar. I should point out that the bar has no threads, and is just tapered to a rounded blunt end instead. Anyway, the same happened with the right side, and the bar w as aligned so it was in the middle, and the outer wounds were covered.

It's now a week and a half since it was done and the bruising has nearly all subsided. The skin around the inner wounds is a bit crusty but is improving, and the outer wounds are all healed over. All doing fine! So I'm very happy with my new belly :) Kiitos Samppa!!!


submitted by: Anonymous
on: 13 Dec. 2001
in Pocketing and Stapling

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Artist: Samppa
Studio: Primitive+Origins
Location: Hammersmith%2C+London

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