You’ve probably heard it before: “Florals? For spring? Groundbreaking.” Regardless of whether you agree with Miranda Priestley’s take on the botanical print, the truth is that flowers are always in style. They’ve long been a staple in not only the design and fashion worlds, but also in the world of tattoos. And thanks to the emergence of new styles and artists of late, the flower tattoos trend has actually evolved significantly, and yes, could be called groundbreaking at times. So whether you’re considering a photo-realistic rose, a simple outline of your favorite bloom, or a watercolor rendition of an herb sprig, there’s definitely a tattooer who can put it together for you. Get inspired with 21 of our favorite flower tattoos below.
1. The delicate, bold botanical
The tattooer behind this beautifully crafted minimalist daisy design is none other than Inside Out studio’s resident artist, Curt Montgomery. Known for his signature clean-but-strong lines, it’s no wonder Montgomery’s tattoos have caught the attention of celebrity clientele like Joe Jonas and Halsey.
2. This massive but minimal bloom
Montgomery is also known for what clients call the “3-D effect,” which is created by layering identical designs of various colors, as illustrated above with this large-scale tulip tattoo. BTW, hot tip: If you’re interested in trying out one of his pieces before getting it done permanently, Montgomery designed an Inkbox semi-permanent flower tattoo that you can find here.
3. A “live leaf” rosehip tattoo
Rita “Rit Kit” Zolotukhina is a Ukrainian tattooer who achieved Insta fame for what she calls “live leaf” tattoos. Her designs, which fall somewhere between a realistic and illustrative style, are created by pressing flowers and leaves dipped in stencil ink onto her client’s bodies. This is different from the normal tattoo design transfer process, which usually involves an image being printed on transfer paper.
4. This perfectly placed floral imprint
For a closer look at Zolotukhina’s tattooing process, check out the video above. As you can see, she first tapes the reference flowers onto her client to find the ideal placement. Once they’ve confirmed the spot, she dips the blooms into stencil ink, then presses them onto the skin to create a stencil. Pretty cool, right? Definitely not the kind of transfer technique you typically see in studios.
5. A full-back flower bed
If you’re a fan of hand poked tattoos, you’ve gotta be impressed with this large-scale flower arrangement by Kelli Kikcio, co-owner of Brooklyn’s Welcome Home studio. Though her style is minimalistic, this oversized back tattoo still packs a punch thanks to its bold lines and pops of color.
6. Teeny wild, wildflowers
If you’re just beginning to consider adding a floral design to your tattoo collection—or maybe making it your first piece—semipermanent may be the answer for right now. Here Sahar Sheikh, an illustrator in North Carolina, drew fingers full of wildflowers with Inkbox’s Freehand Ink, which provides the look of a tattoo without the forever factor. (On average, Inkbox tattoos last about one to two weeks.)
7. This black-and-grey realism rendering
Emma Bundonis, resident artist at Through My Third Eye tattoo studio, practices several styles of tattooing, including fine line realism as seen in the tiger lily above. The incredibly precise detailing on both the petals and the stem truly show off the London-based tattooer’s mastery of her craft.
8. An impressionistic take
Gong Greem is one of the many South Korean tattooers pushing the boundaries of their art form and experimenting with new styles. The artist’s colorful designs and grainy lines resemble the rough brush strokes in impressionist paintings, which often feature different scenes from nature.
9. A sweet, solitary tulip
Part of a series of tulips tattooed by Greem, this upper arm piece does a great job of showing off the artist’s style, which is defined by an illusion of texture—it almost looks like it was drawn using a crayon rather than tattoo ink.
10. This fine line flower design
Recently Laura Martinez, co-founder of New York’s Fleur Noire, told Inside Out that she loves working with tiny details, an obsession that’s become a part of her signature style: delicate, fine line designs like the sternum piece above. Frankly, it’s one of the coolest takes on flower tattoos we’ve seen in a while.
11. Detailed, delicate arrangements
What’s remarkable about Martinez’s floral work is that she makes sure every single detail is accounted for and drawn flawlessly in every single piece, such as the curling of the petals and the veins on the leaves.
12. A piece inspired by tradition
In the American Traditional style, all tattoos are outlined in black ink. This twist on the classic ‘Mom’ tattoo, courtesy of Andrew Stortz, a New Hampshire-based artist and host of industry podcast Books Closed, is a great example of the so-called Sailor Jerry style.
13. The bright, bold, and beautiful
This floral knee dodge (a piece that wraps around, but doesn’t actually touch the knee) is another excellent example of the traditional tattoo style. Aside from their black outlines, traditional tattoos are also known for the use of vibrant inks, including bright reds, oranges, and greens—all hues included in this piece by Alex Zampirri.
14. A flowy, watercolor floret
The watercolor tattoo style was created as an act of defiance against the traditional style, forgoing black outlines for none at all. Instead, the colors seamlessly flow into each other, not unlike watercolor paints, from which the discipline gets its name. Amanda Wachob, the artist who tattooed this piece inspired by a picture taken by the late American photographer, Irving Penn, specializes in the watercolor style.
15. This deep, colorful blossom
This tattoo is also inspired by one of Irving Penn’s photos—the photographer loved shooting closeups of single flowers, particularly poppies, to show off their intricacies. Although both of these pieces were inspired by pictures Wachob is actually most well known for her unique designs which include watercolor swishes and realistic foliage.
16. The blackwork edit
This chest tattoo by Seoul’s Noil Culture, who recently guested at the Inside Out studio, is done in the blackwork style and therefore is in stark contrast to the typically more delicate, dainty floral designs. And roses are a recurring theme in his work—by our count on Instagram, he tattooed three of them in August alone.
17. Flowers of the abstract variety
Your flower tattoo doesn’t need to be literal, though, as evidenced by this piece by Emma Anderson, Brooklyn-based tattooer and co-owner of smallshop. Here, she uses the abstract, contemporary style, which is defined by flowing lines that only roughly resemble blooms.
18. The monochrome masterpiece
Another great example of an abstract tattoo is this impactful, oversized blossom from Mountain, another resident artist smallshop. His fluid, primarily black-and-grey designs—which sometimes include pops of color—are an incredible variation of the abstract style.
19. A playful pocket of posies
Montreal’s Charline Bataille is a master of colorful, cartoony tattoos that are extremely, extremely cool. Often exploring themes of gender, sexuality and nature, they’ve now garnered over 100,000 followers on Instagram—all of whom obsessed with the vibrant pieces Bataille shares almost daily.
20. This paint-inspired piece
This piece by Korean artist Zihee mixes together two very distinct styles. It’s a bright, illustrative piece but also includes in a popular element of glitch tattoos: distortion.
21. The ultimate freehand floral
This minimalistic color piece is the work of Toronto-based artist Jess Chen. Her portfolio is filled with designs inspired by nature, many of which she freehands—including the above piece—so they can better flow with the natural curves of her clients’ bodies.
If you liked 21 Flower Tattoos: Literally Just a Garden of Inspo for Your Next Piece, make sure to check out 13 Disney Tattoos for the Ultimate Stan.