Look what finally came in!

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APP 003

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Guest Spots

Looking for some guest spots starting in Sept.  Willing to come sooner if you can help out with travel expenses.  .  I am currently located in WA state, but willing to travel. I am also on the lookout for a new shop to be based out of!

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“Is It A Keloid?”

Well, if you are light skinned and have never had a keloid before, chances are that it probably isn’t.  A keloid usually comes from trauma to an area and runs in families.  What people with fresh piercings see more often is just simple scarring.  This looks like little bubbles around a fresh piercing (usually cartilage such as a nose or ear) and can be caused by “tenting”.  Tenting is when the skin is pushed away from the tissue and a little bubble forms.  It’s fairly harmless and will usually go away with some pressure and good sea salt soaks.  Of course, always visit your local piercer to be sure, but more often than not it’s just par for the course where healing is concerned.

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Favorite Things

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Coming Together Nicely

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Got my business cards today!  So now just to get my UBI and I am ready to go. Since I am not operating from a physical location I don’t have to get much more than that in my state.  Oh yes, I am doing this the legal way!

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Conference

So I have been meaning to create a blog post about my experience at conference, but unfortunately my left hand wasn’t wanting to work last week. Therefore, I shall do it now. My conference trip started the Friday before my flight. I left Wenatchee about 3:30ish with a friend of mine. She was going to a concert and my flight was insanely early so we decided to carpool. We tried to make it to Seattle in time, but got lost multiple times along the way (we are both directionally challenged people). So by the time we got to Lynwood to pick up her friend, there was no way to make it to the airport before her concert. So, I attended the show with her. It was a goth-industrial band I had never heard of before at one of the goth clubs. This is the story about how I ended up at a goth club in Capitol Hill at midnight listening to a band I now enjoy. We finally made it to the airport by 3AM, so I took a nap before my flight (6:30AM boarding time).

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I made it to Las Vegas around noon, and to Bally’s about 1PM. I spent the next several hours helping unload and unpack all the conference stuff. I found volunteering to be a really fun endeavor, and a good way to meet everyone. Though, since I had yet to find somewhere to stay for the night, I was now wearing two day old clothing and covered in sweat. Of course, that would be the time that Elayne Angel would show up, come over, and talk to me. I stammered like an idiot. I did finally find a place to stay for the night, and did some grocery shopping at Walgreens. Monday, I started classes.

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My day on Monday started with the new attendees orientation, then Wound Healing Dynamics, Disorders in the Industry, and BBP training. Monday night was the big opening party. I wasn’t sure I wanted to go (being in a bathing suit AND around hundreds of people I don’t know usually don’t sound like my cup of tea), but my fellow scholarship recipients – now my second family – talked me into going to the opening pool party. Brian Oviatt asked me why I wasn’t in the pool. I told him it was because I didn’t really know anyone. That’s when he gave me the best advice ever. “If you don’t jump in, you’ll never meet anyone,”. And so I did. That’s how I spent my night hanging out with some of the most amazing people I have had the pleasure of meeting. After that, my whole conference experience changed.

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I went on to take Oro-Facial Anatomy, Working Clean Within Your Studio, Troubleshooting Piercing Problems, Nostril Piercing (Advanced Fundamentals), CPR, Healing or Harm?, A Fireside Chat with Jim Ward, Initial Jewelry (the “Rules” and When To Break Them), Versatility in Piercing Techniques, Strategic Marking, Medical Considerations and First Aid.

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The ending banquet was amazing. The food was delicious (and I was able to both wear a corset and enjoy a full meal), the entertainment was fun, and the raffle was….interesting! Though, it was fairly sad to see everyone leave, I can’t wait to go back again next year! Especially after the volunteer’s dinner. Singing bad karaoke on a bus with a bunch of other piercers on our way to stuff our face at a buffet is something everyone should experience once in their life.

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“How do I measure for a corset as a plus size gal?”

I want to start this article off by saying that many of these techniques will also work for larger men who are looking to corset, so fear not fellas! I haven’t forgotten you! Second, this article is not about waist training for larger girls. For that, I suggest giving the awesome people at Orchard Corset a call!

Corsets, in my honest opinion, are one of those things that just looks good on everyone. However, sometimes it can be hard to make sure that you are getting the right size. For years, I thought I could only wear under-bust corsets until I learned how to properly measure myself. Now, I wish to pass on this knowledge.

My first tip, of course, is to have yourself professionally measured by your local lingerie or corset shop. But assuming that’s not a possibility, this guide will show you where to measure and what measurements to use when ordering online.

Corsets use three measurements: Under-bust, waist, and hips. Each one of these is important to figuring out which size to order. First, start with the under-bust. Your under-bust is directly under your breasts and is measured around. See the image below for help.

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The next thing to measure is your waist. If you aren’t sure where your waist is, bend over to your side. Where you bend is where your waist is. See the image below for help.

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Finally, find your hips by pressing down until you can feel the bone. Don’t forget to get the largest part of your butt in the measurements. See the image below for help.

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Usually, when ordering online, there is some sort of size chart that you can use these numbers to find what their size is. I recommend using the size chart from whatever store you are ordering from because size numbers can change depending on the company and country in which the item is produced.

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“What is the difference between internally threaded and externally threaded?”

The short answer:  Everything.

The easiest and quickest way to tell if a piercer is quality or not is to take a look at whether they still use externally threaded jewelry to perform initial piercings.  If so, my suggestion would be to log onto the APP website and locate someone else.  But I digress.   Externally threaded jewelry is problematic for many reasons, not the least of which being that generally a piercer must use a needle that is one size larger than the jewelry so that the threading fits into the needle and doesn’t snag on the fresh piercing.  This can cause increased bruising, soreness, redness and bleeding.  Whereas with internally threaded jewelry, it can easily be attached to a taper and slide right into the fresh piercing without creating a larger wound.  The threading on externally threaded jewelry also has a tendency to strip very easily because it’s usually made of lower quality metal.  Below is a visual comparison between the two:

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(Photo courtesy of The Modified World)

So next time you are in the market for new jewelry – whether it is for a fresh piercing or something already healed – just remember that internally threaded, high quality jewelry = a happy, healthy piercing.

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10 More Days

There are only ten more days until I leave for my first APP conference.  I have gone through a lot to be able to get here, and am very grateful for all those who have helped me along the way.   My husband paid for my plane tickets as a birthday gift, and I was lucky enough to be awarded with the No Excuses scholarship to help with the rest.  For those who haven’t heard of it, the No Excuses scholarship is by piercers, for piercers.  I will be staying in a room with between four and five other people whom I have never met before and attending classes from about 10AM until around 8PM, as well as volunteering. I also have the opportunity to attend two roundtable classes – one with Fakir and one with Jim Ward – and learn directly from Elayne Angel.  The toughest part now is figuring out how to stay sane for the next two weeks.

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“What should I wear in my new piercing?”

Not every type of jewelry is appropriate to wear when first pierced or stretching. Below is a little information on how to pick your jewelry.

ASTM F136 Titanium

ASTM stands for the American Society for Testing and Materials and is an international organization that tests various products and publishes their findings in an annual publication called the Annual Book of ASTM Standards. F136 is a titanium alloy that has been deemed by the ASTM to be safe for surgical implants. In other words, it is meant to stay in a person’s body for a long time. Therefore, a person who is pierced with jewelry that is made from ASTM F136 titanium can keep that jewelry in them for the entire length of the healing time and not have to worry about a reaction.

14K (or higher) Gold

14K and 18K are good for initial piercings for several reasons. First, these are both strong enough that they won’t strip the threading of the jewelry as easy as softer gold can. Also, fewer people have gold allergies than to other metals, so the risk of the client being allergic goes down. It is a bit spendy, but can bring a stunning look to any piercing.

Niobium

Niobium’s biggest selling point is that it’s hypoallergenic – even more so than gold. It also comes in many different colors, including blue, green, purple, and yellow that will not chip over time. There is no nickel found in Niobium and it is easy to sanitize.

Glass

Of all of these materials, it is THE MOST hypoallergenic and easily sterilized. In addition, glass is able to be made in a variety of sizes that aren’t available with other materials. It is also one of the cheaper options for those looking to save money. It is most popular in soft glass or pyrex. Some of the glass available is the same as that used in hospitals and labs, as it can withstand intense heating and cooling.

Once the piercing is healed, a client generally has a lot more options such as stone, horn, and wood. Acrylic should never be an option as it releases toxins into the body even in healed piercings and cannot be sterilized.

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