Business Watch

Welcome to the Business Watch. Each month we will showcase a business (as well as give you the details about any businesses to stay away from). We’ll also look at products (both domestic and international) that have sparked our interest. If your business or product is interested in being featured on Business Watch, please send us an email at phillyindependent@gmail.com and tell us why you think we’d be interested in doing a feature about you.

December:

MATT MACINNES for STUDIO CL

Matt MacInnes

The Studio CL in Rittenhouse Square is not your average salon. Located at 128 South 19th Street, this brainchild of master stylist Artur Kirsh is on the cutting edge of all things hair. From their “dry cutting” techniques, to custom color bar, to full line of hair care products, they have gained a reputation for excellence in the Philadelphia area and across the country.

We wanted to get a first hand look at the Studio CL and arranged to spend a little time with stylist Matt MacInnes.

Matt MacInnes has a passion for straightening and conditioning, believing that healthy hair bolsters a person’s confidence and overall sense of well being. He specializes in Keratin treatments, dry cutting, and color. He has been a part of the Studio CL Workshop team for 2 years.

It was easy to see that Matt really took pride in his work as the soft-spoken stylist layered countless foil covered highlights onto his customer. After a thorough shampoo and conditioning treatment, hair hair was blown out before being cut  while completely dry.

The end was result was a beautiful young lady that was glowing about her new cut and color as she prepared to head out for the evening to celebrate her birthday.

If you’re not satisfied with your stylist, or are simply looking for that extra care in a relaxing setting, we’d suggest giving the Studio CL a call and booking a session with Matt or one of their other skillful stylists. Tell them Independent Philly sent you!

Studio CL: 215-496-0604

November:

WHIPPED LIGHTNING

From Whipped Lightning's Website

With so much debate raging in the last few months over Four Loko (a potent blend of alcohol and caffeine) we’ve been keeping our eye out for other  products that might take its place now that it has been banned in many states. That is when we discovered “Whipped Lightning”.

According to the official website, “Whipped Lighting” is the world’s first alcohol infused whipped cream. The alcohol content tops out around 36% alcohol (72 proof).

Because “Whipped Lightning” is considered an alcoholic beverage and not a food product, the nutritional content (including fat and calories) are not listed on the product can or on the website. The website does mention the following: “Whipahol is not a food product and is not subject to FDA labeling requirements; it is an alcoholic beverage. You should consume Whipahol in moderation, please enjoy it responsibly.”.

Whipped Lightning

It currently is available in New Jersey stores and in Pennsylvania by special order. It has yet to be sold in New York. Flavors include German Chocolate, Amaretto, Caramel Pecan, Spiced Vanilla, White Chocolate Raspberry, Tropical Passion, Strawberry Colada,  and Hazelnut Espresso.

We spoke to area college students from Villanova, Temple, and Penn who told us that they most often use Whipped Lightning to top shots of other alcohol, some eat it straight out of the can, and one even told us he covered his pumpkin pie with it “to help tolerate his family” over Thanksgiving.

It looks like only a matter of time before some college kid consumes too much Whipped Lightning, tries to use the leftover can as a Whippit, falls over and cracks his head, and then the government tries to ban the product along with Four Loko.

Remember people…EVERYTHING in moderation.

www.whippedlightning.com

Gamble Tattoos & Piercings

Chris Cheico of Gamble Tattoos (on right)

After covering the Philadelphia Tattoo Convention, Independent Philly wanted to get the first hand experience of being inked by one of the artists.

Chris Sketches Out my Tattoo (A Twin Lens Rolleiflex Camera)

The work was done by Chris Chieco of “Gamble Tattoos & Piercings”. It took almost three hours (Chris really took his time; you’ll see photos of the final result below).

Getting a tattoo  isn’t exactly pleasant (it itches and burns a bit) but Chris was very friendly and easy to work with.

When it was all over, Chris answered several questions for me.

Independent Philly: How long have you been working as a tattoo artist?

Chris Chieco: 8 Years.

IP: When was “Gamble Tattoos” started and how did you come up with the name?

CC: Gamble Tattoos started 3 years ago. I came up with the name, because everything is a gamble; you have to take chances and you never know if your going to win or lose, so I thought it fit our artistic lifestyle.

IP: Who designed the logo?

CC: It was a collaboration by all affiliated with the shop

Gamble Tattoo's Logo

IP: What is the largest tattoo you have ever done?

CC: A full coverage back piece, from the shoulders to the knee.

(Still in progress)

IP: What is your favorite tattoo you’ve ever done for someone?

CC: I cant really single it out, there are so many nice pieces I really enjoyed doing. I’d have to say some of the tattoos more on the realistic side of art. I like taking on challenges.

A Tattoo by Chris Cheico

IP: Why do you only have one tattoo? What is it of?

CC: I wanted to develop my own personal artistic skills, prior to putting any on myself.

My tattoo is a custom design of a five-eyed demon head engulfed in flames.

IP: What is the longest a tattoo took you to finish (total ink time)?

CC: 50 Hours.

Chris working at Philly Tattoo Convention

IP: Where is Gamble located?

CC: 1907 Northampton  Street, In Easton Pennsylvania (18042)

IP:  Who else works at the shop and what is their individual experience?

CC: Adam Pasquali: Adam began his apprenticeship with me back in November of 2007 and has been a dedicated artist to both his clients and the shop for 2 1/2 Years. He specializes in color realism and Bio-mech.

Josh Knecht:  Josh has been tattooing for 13 years. He has worked at other tattoo shops out west and in the Philadelphia area. He came to work at Gamble a year ago. He specializes in Traditional Japanese Styles.

Steve McKenzie: Steve has been tattooing for 2 1/12 years, and has worked at various tattoo shops in New Jersey before coming to work at Gamble. He has been working here for a year and specializes in gray-wash.

Kate Lucykinish: Kate is an apprentice at the shop and just started tattooing three months ago.

Gamble Tattoos at the Philly Tattoo Convention

Work in Progress

IP: You also offer a full range of piercing and piercing products, Correct?

CC: Yes

IP: You really took a lot of time and effort in doing my tattoo, clearly its a point of pride for you (it looks great). What made you decide to become a tattoo artist?

CC: Thank you I enjoyed tattooing you. What made me decide to become a tattoo artist was the lifestyle, the freedom to travel and work anywhere, and the love of art.

IP: What would you say to someone who is strongly considering a tattoo but cant seem to pull the trigger on getting it done?

CC: I would tell them to first familiarize themselves with an artist who suits their artistic style. On a personal level we pride ourselves with helping people feel comfortable with their decision to get permanent art on their body.

A Recent Tattoo done by Chris

IP: Give us an interesting fact or two that might make someone who is looking for a tattoo artist come see you at Gamble Tattoos.

CC: Designing a tattoo is a tedious process for everyone involved which is why every tattoo we design is created specifically for that individual.

If you are looking to get a tattoo or a piercing I highly suggest making the trip to Gamble Tattoos. The staff is friendly and knowledgeable and does great work.

You can find Gamble online at www.gambletattoos.com or reach them via phone at (610) 438-4182. Tell them Independent Philly sent you!

Here is a look at the Tattoo Chris inked for me on my right forearm:

The Photo and the Finished Tattoo