Buckle Street Studios by LockeAldgateLondon

Building a community with Mike Love.

We spoke to Mike Love – celebrity tattoo artist and one of the stars of our own brand video on his journey and long-running residency at Buckle Street Studios by Locke.

One of the pillars of Locke is the local community – both inside and outside our buildings. We love to support creatives and locals by providing spaces to build communities whether that be through residencies, our co-working spaces or cultural activations.  

<p>&copy; Mike Love</p>

© Mike Love

We spent an afternoon with friend of Locke, Mike Love. Discussing how he built his community, making Leman Locke and Buckle Street Studios his home away from home and even witnessed some live tattooing.

The House Hosts, locals and regular clients really make Locke feel like a home away from home. 

- Mike Love.

How did Locke become your London base both as a studio and place to stay?  

The collaboration between Locke and myself was really organic - I was attracted initially by the online presence and vibe and the focus on creating beautiful, homely spaces really spoke to me as a tattooer as this aligns with the service I give. As soon as I got chatting to the team at Buckle Street it just felt right and slotted into place.  

<p>&copy; Mike Love</p>

© Mike Love

What is it about the spaces that makes Locke your go to spot?  

The spaces align immaculately - with my work and my clients lots of them already stay with Locke and those that don’t are excited to experience spending time here.

How did you get into tattooing and what is it about it that you love?  

I’ve been tattooing for well over 10 years now and it is my absolute passion. I feel like tattooing is now part of who I am. I started out as a young passionate creative, spending all of my spare time in tattoo studios soaking up the atmosphere. I gradually felt a fire inside me and I knew I had to focus my life on creating tattoos for other people. My love for tattooing comes partly from the physical art of tattooing itself but mostly I love the people that I get to spend time with - their stories, their passions, their experiences.  

<p>&copy; Mike Love</p>

© Mike Love

What does your day look like when you’re working from Buckle Street Studios?  

9am - wake up slowly, grab a coffee from Shaman, get the studio space set up.  

10am - first client of the day. The House Host greets them and sends them up to the mezzanine where I work. We spend the next hour or so designing their tattoo, sharing stories and creating their bespoke piece. I run through their detailed aftercare package, we grab some pictures and wrap up the session. 

1pm - I have a new client in & repeat the process up until around 6pm.  

7pm - after cleaning and closing the studio space I head up to the room to get freshened up and go out for food with my wife - we love exploring the area around Aldgate and now have a few favourite food spots.  

Locke is all about building a community through both its own House Hosts and locals, do you feel you have built your own community at Buckle Street?  

100%, a mixture of the House Hosts, locals and regular clients really make Locke feel like a home away from home.

 Become part of the Locke community
 and make it your place to meet, innovate and create. 

Buckle Street Studios by Locke


Planning to be out-out more than in-in? Check into your own studio and find a small, but beautifully-formed, East London sanctuary.

Buckle Street Studios by Locke

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