Traditional Butterfly Tattoos
American Traditional tattoos are a unique style.
Also known as Old School, this style uses bold and highly saturated ink colors. Crisp lines create a flat yet clean design.
This particular type of tattoo rose to popularity during the Second World War.
Soldiers stationed in Honolulu often came back from shore leave with tattoos in this style.
Many different themes are explored through Old School tattoos.
Some draw inspiration from female bodies.
Others use nautical tattoo motifs, with anchors and ships.
Wildlife also influences American Traditional styles.
Perhaps the most delicate of all the nature-inspired designs is the butterfly.
Many people view butterflies as feminine.
Despite this, the design isn’t gender-specific.
Anyone can choose to display butterflies on their body.
Traditional butterfly tattoos capture a distinct style within intricate and soft designs.
Traditional Butterfly Tattoo Meanings
The American Traditional butterfly is a powerful symbol.
It holds many different meanings for people to resonate with.
Most of the associations made with butterflies are positive.
But, some of the meanings behind traditional butterfly tattoos are negative as well.
A Symbol of Hope
For many, Old School butterfly tattoos represent hope and renewal.
Butterflies endure a transformation of their own.
Starting as small caterpillars, they later become beautiful butterflies.
The winged creatures inspire people to leave negativities behind.
On the other hand, they also give people the courage to start a new life chapter.
A Darker Side
Traditional butterfly tattoos can also be dark.
Some see the creatures as a symbol of mortality.
An old sailors’ superstition believed seeing a butterfly before embarking meant death at sea.
This Old School tattoo design represents individuals as always ready to face their demise.
To further tie in the theme of death, some artists add skull tattoos to the design.
Traditional Butterfly Tattoo Designs
American traditional butterflies are unlike regular butterfly tattoos.
While butterflies are dainty, the style depicts them boldly and full of life.
Clean and symmetrical black lines make up the whole outline of each piece.
The butterfly’s wings are reminiscent of stained glass windows.
Bright and eye-catching colors fill in the patterns.
Traditional butterfly tattoos depict both wings on display.
The butterfly is occasionally pictured alone.
Artists can add flowers or other butterflies to expand the artwork.
Sometimes a woman’s face is added to the body of the butterfly.
Various imagery may get drawn within the wings.
For the most detailed butterfly tattoo possible, reserve enough space on the skin.