A new Hellertown business is spreading happiness through the stunning body art it creates for its clients, and it’s the first business in the history of the borough to officially be doing it.
Hellertown Tattoo Company recently opened for appointments in a Water Street Plaza end unit, joining establishments such as Saucon Valley Sporting Goods and Hairs What’s Happening in the small shopping center just off Main Street, behind Roma Pizza.
Owners and Jay and Jesika Seagreaves and Caleb Gesicki are new to the Saucon Valley, but all three grew up in eastern Pennsylvania and share a love for the art of tattooing.
A Salisbury Township native, Jay Seagreaves has worked in the industry locally for more than 20 years, starting at an Allentown tattoo shop where he spent the bulk of his career. He then worked with his brother-in-law in Schuylkill County for about a year-and-a-half.
Schuylkill County is also where his wife, Jesika, grew up.
Seagreaves and Gesicki became friends working side-by-side in the Allentown shop and began to discuss opening their own business somewhere in the Lehigh Valley several years ago. They discovered the Saucon Valley, they said, during walks on the rail trail.
The rail trail and everything else Hellertown has to offer is what sold them on the borough, said Jesika, as they wanted to be in an area with a strong sense of community.
In order to open Hellertown Tattoo Company in the Water Street shopping center, the business needed to obtain a variance from the borough’s zoning hearing board, which was granted late last year. Thanks to support from officials on both the zoning board and borough council, the owners said the process of opening the shop went smoothly, and they are excited to be welcoming both new and returning clients to their new space.
By the summer, they plan to begin offering piercings and beyond that they may eventually offer cosmetic tattooing, said Jesika, who in addition to her work at Hellertown Tattoo Company is also a yoga instructor and food truck operator.
All three stressed the importance of maintaining proper sanitation procedures in operating any type of business related to tattooing and other forms of body art.
“It’s not only keeping your clients safe,” said Gesicki. “It’s keeping yourself safe as well, and that’s something we take very seriously.”
He noted that as safety standards and tattooing technology have advanced in recent decades, tattoos have achieved a kind of mainstream acceptance that would have been unimagineable before the 1980s. Today, he said, it’s not unusual to have senior citizens requesting them, and the number of visible tattoos people have has also increased.
Since the start of the COVID pandemic Gesicki said the demand for tattoos has increased dramatically, particularly among white-collar professionals like schoolteachers.
“Nobody’s too old,” he said, noting that his most senior client to date was 87 years young.
As with many things, once someone gets their first tattoo it’s often difficult to resist the urge to put more ink down, and it’s not unusual for long-lasting relationships to develop.
“Some clients become some pretty cool friends,” Gesicki said.
Both Seagreaves and Gesicki enjoy working with their clients to create the one-of-a-kind designs for which they are known, and about 90 percent of their work is entirely original.
Among the only things they won’t tattoo, Gesicki said, is anything racist, homophobic or sexist.
“I will gladly cover up a harmful tattoo,” he added.
In some cases, they will also refer a potential client to a different artist if they feel that the work they do is more aligned with the type of tattoo the client is seeking.
Seagreaves and Gesicki plan to host guest tattoo artists at Hellertown Tattoo Company in the future, and a grand opening event is being planned for when it’s a bit warmer outside.
All three owners said they are looking forward to being involved in the Hellertown community and helping with charitable efforts like the annual Toys for Tots campaign.
Both Seagreaves (@jay_seagreaves) and Gesicki (@fragiledagger) regularly use Instagram to share photos of their work, and Gesicki hosts a website at FragileDagger.com. Photos and more information about Hellertown Tattoo Company may be found on the @hellertown_tattoo_company feed on Instagram and on Facebook.
For appointments or questions, call or text 484-456-9724.