Sunrays, crosses and a horseshoe: The stories behind some of the most talked-about Peaky Blinders tattoos

Posted on by Martin Booth

Peaky Blinders is a show bursting with personality and overflowing with vivid, unforgettable characters.

Over five seasons (so far), the hit TV series has attracted millions of devoted followers. They have been captivated by the brilliantly told story of the Birmingham street gang of the same name, led by the multi-layered character Tommy Shelby.

One of the factors adding extra intrigue to the show is the tattoos sported by several characters. They were created by the fabulous Loz Schiavo, hair and make-up designer for Peaky Blinders, and produced by TattooedNow!

At TattooedNow! we take great pride in our association with such a highly regarded series. And we are also proud to be the sole distributor of an exclusive range of official tattoos as seen in the series on your TV screens.

Let’s go behind the scenes and get the story of some of those tattoos…

Tommy Shelby has four tattoos that have appeared on screen. The most famous is the sunray design on his left breast. This was based on a real tattoo that had Jesus in the middle; but Tommy’s not the religious type, so only the sunrays were used.

On his right bicep is a military tattoo, probably a legacy of his First World War service, which includes the word “Forrard”, a version of “Forward”. On his left bicep is a rose interlaced with a horseshoe. This appeared between the first two series and marks his gaining of a legitimate betting licence during season one.

Also on his right arm is a tattoo that first hit the screens between seasons two and three. This reads TGC, standing for Tommy, Grace (his wife) and Charlie (his son).

One of the most memorable Peaky Blinders characters is Alfie Solomons, the leader of a Jewish London gang. Jews are not traditionally supposed to have tattoos – but Alfie is not your orthodox Jew, so he has tattoos on his hand.

Loz also used her make-up skills to portray Alfie’s psoriasis, making the skin on the lower part of his face red and blotchy.

Luca Changretta is another powerful Peaky Blinders creation, a sinister Italian-American mobster with a serious grudge against the Shelby family.

Because of Luca’s Catholic background, Loz came up with designs for crosses and other symbols – as well as a black hand tattoo to reflect the menacing “black hand letter” he delivers to the Peaky Blinders.

These tattoos – and so many more – are now available from TattooedNow! so that you can emulate your favourite character by wearing an extremely realistic temporary tattoo.

Our tattoos are very easy to apply and will last for between two and seven days, depending on your skin type. Check out the full range here.