Black and Grey Tattoos

"Went in for a tiger and roman helmet on my upper arm. Really impressed and happy with what I got, so much better than I expected it to be. The colour and attention to detail is phenomenal. On top of that the place was really clean and professional." ~Richard A.

"Booking is super easy and the team are really helpful. I've got a few tattoos already but this is the best place as far as I'm concerned. I can't think of why I'd go anywhere else when these guys are so good! A tattoo is for life and you'll cherish it forever when it's done to this quality. Can't recommend enough!" ~Sam S.

"My first tattoo....far to old but you only live once!!!.....Even though it was quiet small, simple and I was particular with the placement and style I never once felt like these guys didn't want to do it. They took their time to work with me and a no point point did I feel rushed." ~Simon W.

"Couldn't be more chuffed with it, they offer their professional and personal opinion along with putting yours first! The design I wanted was perfect for me and they were open to alterations. Always checked if I was feeling okay and calmed my nerves a great deal!" ~Jacob L.

"Been to the shop twice now and both times felt really comfortable and at ease that I'm in good hands - always a cool vibe in there and I genuinely recommend you anytime anyone says they're thinking of getting a tattoo." ~Luca G.

"I got my first tattoo a couple of days ago at Cloak and dagger and it was an amazing experience! I went in a week before to book the appointment and the receptionist was super nice,relaxed, knew what he was talking about, he was encouraging, and in no time I had my appointment booked. " ~Ludovica M.

"As a tattoo newbie I expected to feel nervous and out of my depth, but that wasn't the case at all; everyone was very casual and welcoming, and I felt like I could relax and chat with the artists and staff at the shop who naturally made me feel at ease and were very considerate with my somewhat unusual design request." ~Tara K.


Making use of only black ink in varying shades, the black and grey tattoo style had very simple and humble beginnings, but has since moved on to be a very popular art form in the tattoo world. The black and grey tattoo style began in prisons, as inmates only had access to one colour of ink – black – to use with their tattoos. Tattoos were prohibited, so prisoners would have to create their tattoos in secrecy, making use of whatever materials that they could find. Inmates would use guitar strings or safety pins for needles, and cigarette ash or pen ink to create their tattoos.

After leaving the prison system, many former inmates would choose to continue getting tattoos in the black and grey style, to match the prison tattoos that they already had. The tattoo artists that they visited had access to better equipment, and so were able to create more intricate levels of shading for the black and grey tattoos, which we still see in the style today.

No longer seen as just “jailhouse ink,” and limited to being seen on only inmates and gangsters, the black and grey tattoo style has seen a huge boom in popularity in recent years, and has been mixed in with other styles of tattooing, such as realism, to create an even bigger buzz.

Opening Hours

We will be closed from the 17th December until the 3rd January for a refurbishment and Christmas. Happy holidays!!!

Monday - Saturday
11:00 am - 7:00 pm

Sunday
11:00 am - 5:00pm

Contact Info

Address:
34 Cheshire Street
London, E2 6EH

Phone:
020 7175 0133