CELESTE: How did you come up with the name Mother Ink?
LAURA: I wanted something all-encompassing and that everyone would remember. We all know Mother Goose, so I imagined what a Mother Goose figure would look like if she was also a tattoo enthusiast. Hip. modern, edgy, but still classically feminine. She embodies the attitude that tattoos may now be mainstream, but still a little naughty. Above all, the "Mother of Temporary Ink" is just that, a mother, and I love her for that!
CELESTE: What makes your temporary tattoos eco-friendly?
LAURA: The packaging. I really worked hard to find a way other than using plastic wrapped tattoo sheets. When I see this kind in the store, I just cringe. A thin plastic film is necessary for protection, but the outer wrapper is completely reusable as a colorful paper cd/dvd sleeve. I make all the tattoos a special size to accomplish this so that when you are finished with your tattoo, you now have a pretty little Mother Ink media sleeve...and no guilt! And of course, we only use paper to ship, even with our wholesale accounts. Peanuts are for elephants, not geese!
CELESTE: Ingredients in your tattoos?
LAURA: Wow, there are a lot! It's actually intimidating to look at the long names, but the tattoo inks are vegetable based and FDA approved for skin use (unlike Henna). Adhesive is added to make the inks stick to the skin, similar to an adhesive bandage. All ingredients are listed on the Mother Ink website "How to Apply" page.
CELESTE: What is the most outrageous tattoo you've ever designed?
LAURA: The real one on my lower back, but I'll never tell!
CELESTE: If someone asked you to design a tattoo for them, would you and how long would it take?
LAURA: I have had so many requests for custom tattoos, and even heard of someone getting a permanent Mother Ink "Peace" tattoo. I guess that's sort of stealing, but I was excited! If I were really quick at doing them, I would take custom orders, but unfortunately I'm a total slowpoke. My passion for design means I probably spend way too much time on each one. Believe it or not, I was actually going to hire out the design aspect when I first started the business. It was serendipity that I couldn't afford it!
LAURA: That's a tough question. It varies so much from person to person (due to activity level and skin type), but the range is anywhere from one to seven days. The best way to make them last is to cleanse the skin well before applying and not to place them where friction from clothing will be an issue.
CELESTE: Laura-what inspired you to start designing tattoos?
LAURA: I got pregnant! Then I searched all over to find beautiful, hip temporary tattoos with which to decorate my growing belly, only to find the usual "clip art" varieties. I had heard about the dangers of Henna (not to mention many women can't afford this option), and decided to make them myself. Mother Ink was born!
CELESTE: Would you like to add anything else, Laura?
LAURA: Yes. As much as I love real tattoos, I think that (like most people) I'm fickle. I urge young people, as well as adults, to try temporary tattoos as a way to express themselves...temporarily. I will always be wearing a fresh, new, creative design that I love today. Will you?
LAURA'S BIO: Laura Silverthorn is a former nurse, foreign aid worker, and art school drop out. She conceptualized the Mother Ink Brand in early 2007 while pregnant with her first child and brought it to market in 2008. She currently lives in Philadelphia with her son Sean Patrick.
See all of Laura's designs at
Mother Ink now!
Mother Ink now!