Our tattooed reporter, Laura Collins, discovers Doodle Club’s tattoo night.
Tattoos and alcohol don’t mix. Everybody knows that, right? We’ve all heard the horror stories about somebody getting plastered, demanding a tattoo and then waking up to find an awful, misspelt, drunken decision permanently etched into their skin. I’ve seen the result of one of these horror stories myself, and it wasn’t pretty.
Now don’t get me wrong, I love tattoos. I even have a couple myself (just don’t tell my mum). But when I think about mixing tattoos with alcohol I can’t help but flinch. So when I heard about a tattoo drawing night held in Drink, Shop, Do bar, a quirky shop-cum-bar on on Caledonian Road near King’s Cross, I was slightly alarmed. The idea of it presented terrible drunken tattoo scenes in my head that were so terrible that my inner voyeur forced me to go along to see what it was all about.
As I walked into the Drink, Shop, Do bar I was relieved, if a little disappointed, to discover there were no tattoo needles in sight. There were only pots of pens and bits of paper dotted across the tables. It seemed there were to be no drunken tattoo mistakes occurring, except the ones that happened on paper. That’s because the tattoo drawing night was an event put on by Doodle Club; a concept that combines drinks, people and, well, doodling.
Doodle Club is the brain child of a man who goes by the name of Mr Mumbles. When asked his real name he replied with ‘Dixie’. He wore a waistcoat, tie and wacky glasses, and at times he spoke in an odd voice. You get the picture. He is an eccentric character, but a loveable one. And this façade goes hand in hand with Doodle Club.
The themed event happens once a month and allows people the chance to relax, have a few drinks and take their mind off everyday life by mindlessly doodling the night away. And it works, even for someone like me who has the drawing abilities of a fish.
There’s something quite therapeutic about sipping on a cocktail while drawing something stupid, in this instance penning tattoos of cartoon people. Mr Mumbles prepares the base pictures in advance, apparently while sat at his kitchen table, and everybody else doodles on top of them. I was lucky enough to get a picture of a fat man’s backside, upon which I had to doodle some tattoos. My friend was less lucky: he got a penis! But I was still relatively impressed with our efforts. It seems tattoos and alcohol actually do mix after all!
Once the doodle is complete it is hung on the wall for all to see. And then you can take another piece of paper and start all over again. It’s like playgroup for adults and, if the smiles around the room were anything to go by, it’s a big hit. What’s more, Mr Mumbles acts as DJ throughout the night so there are tunes to doodle to.
The next Doodle Club takes place at Drink, Shop, Do bar on Thursday 18 April. Rumour has it the theme may have something to do with reality TV and soaps, so start looking to Simon Cowell and Phil Mitchell for inspiration.