Top 71 Viking Compass Tattoo Ideas – [2021 Inspiration Guide]
A Norse charm also known as the Vegvísir, the Viking compass derives its name from an ancient Icelandic manuscript.
The symbol became known as “the sign post,” a charm to guide one through treacherous weather and terrain without getting lost.
In recent years the Viking compass has sparked new interest, and is now a much-revered tattoo subject.
The Viking compass consists of eight staves branching out from a shared point, with each stave representing a cardinal or intermediate direction. Each stave point ends in a unique symbol believed by Norse scholars to be a protective rune.
While some depictions of the Viking compass have all the staves sharing an equal length, other adaptations show a variation depending on each direction. It is generally believed that the length of the staves does not deter from the charm’s central meaning, with artists and historians alike stressing only that the prospective tattoo wearer make sure they’re picking an accurate design.
The Viking compass tattoo can be a powerful symbol to honor one’s lineage or bestow guidance and protection upon one’s self. Just as the Vikings were unflinching warriors and adventure-seekers, they were also bound by a deep loyalty to their communities and loved ones. The man who wears the Viking compass does not run from battle nor stray too far from his purpose, but cuts his own path and leads the way for others.
You may have to explain the compass’s origins to the uninitiated, but once you do it is highly unlikely you will be forgotten.
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1. Viking Compass Tattoos with Color
While black and grey work is a hugely popular and gorgeous medium for your viking compass tattoos, don’t discount color. A strategically placed pop or smear of a bright color can pop your tattoo right off your skin, drawing attention and creating a bigger impact.
Red is an obvious choice, as many associate Vikings with battle and, accordingly, blood. Red is a classic power color and works perfectly in a tattoo paying homage to a race of truly hardcore warriors. Trash polka is a stunning way to incorporate color while modernizing ancient times.
2. Viking Compass Tattoos Featuring Animals
Animals were very important to the Vikings. Certain animals associated with gods and goddesses. Powerful god Odin is frequently associated with ravens, horses and wolves. Goddess Freya is often represented by a boar, while goats can be linked to Thor. While not a god, Fenrir is a giant wolf of Norse mythology.
The lifelike appearance of photo-realism is a great technique for any Viking tattoos featuring animals. It lends your ink an epic, timeless appeal while paying homage to a proud culture. Animal features like feathers and fur require a great deal of experience and skill, so choose your artist carefully.
3. Double Viking Compass Tattoos
While a single compass is generally all that’s needed to find your way, double Viking compass tattoos are a powerful statement. This is due to the specific runes at the end of each spoke. These runes can represent many things. Depending on interpretation, they can spell out the name of a person or place. You might choose to spell out a location that’s significant to you. Runes can also be used to read fortunes, and so your compass tattoo may spell out a desired life goal or achievement.
Double tattoos can also represent a dual nature, much like Jekyll and Hyde. They can also be a sweet yet hardcore way to link a couple romantically. Regardless of what they mean, double compass tattoos look their best when inked with precision line work. A complementary background can make a compass pop, whether its a black and gray fade or a splash of vibrant color.
4. Viking Compass Hand Tattoos
Your hands steer your life. They control where your motorcycle, bike or car goes. They do just about everything that creates destination – what better place for a compass? Hands are also one of the most hardcore places for a tattoo, declaring your love of ink in an extremely visible way.
When considering a Viking compass hand tattoo, remember that hands – like feet – are a bit tricky. The skin is very close to the bone, which requires an experienced artist and a delicate touch. For the same reason, these tattoos can also be more painful than thicker-skinned areas of the body like the forearm or back.
While palm tattoos are striking, they’re also notoriously difficult and fade early. Find a tattooist skilled in this area and be aware that palm tattoos usually require regular touch-ups.
5. Black & Gray Viking Compass Tattoos
When contemplating a viking compass tattoo design, you may notice that a majority of existing ink is done in shades of black and gray. While there was certainly no lack of color in the Viking world, we tend to think of it as a cold, foggy and misty place in time.
All these elements, combined with the pure visual punch of quality black and gray tattooing, make this technique a great choice for your upcoming viking compass tattoo. Expert shading, blending and dotwork can make an otherwise-ordinary design leap off the skin, conjuring images of navigating the rough seas through fog on a knorr or langskip.
6. Linework Viking Compass Tattoos
Viking writing was composed of symbols called runes – these are the shapes you see extending from the spokes of a Viking compass. Runes were very simple letters, composed almost entirely of straight lines. For this reason, sharp and crisp line work often makes the best Viking compass tattoos. While these tattoos may look simplistic at first, they’re the most faithful recreations of the runic alphabet.
Viking Compass Tattoo FAQ’s
What is the Meaning of Vegvisir?
Combining the Old Norse words vegur (way or road) and visir (pointer), the literal meaning of Vegvisir is to point the way. According to the Huld Manuscript – an Icelandic collection compiled in 1880 – the symbol was quite powerful. If carried, the Vegvisir would keep a person on track through storms and all types of bad weather, even if they didn’t know where they were going.
Did you dig these Viking Compass tattoos but need more inspiration? Check out the links below for more Norse related ink expressions:
The Best 14 Leather Jackets for Men in 2021
With the winter months (hopefully) dwindling down, it’s time to start planning ahead to a time where we can wear thinner jackets and fewer layers. While it may be tempting to quickly shed your parka and grab for whatever piece of outerwear is nearby, don’t reach for last year’s wardrobe item just yet. Isn’t it time you try something new, like, say, a leather jacket?
Though it may seem all leather jackets are similar, there are actually many different designs and styles that work for different body types and tastes. In this article, we will take a look at the hottest leather jacket trends that have hit the market this season.
1. Aaron Brown Leather Bomber
The Aaron Brown Leather Jacket from The Jacket Maker is an excellent choice for any guy looking for that traditional bomber look. This awesome jacket features a slim cut and ribbed cuffs and waist. It’s made with incredibly tough, yet soft, goatskin leather, making it a great choice for guys that aren’t used to wearing leather jackets.
One of the best things about the Aaron is that it shirks the classic pouch pockets on the lower half of the jacket, opting for two buttoned patch pockets on the chest instead. This design gives it a more streamlined look than most bombers, without taking away from any of the authenticity.
2. Saint Laurent Leather Biker Jacket
There is a reason why leather jackets and bikers are usually associated with one another. Historically, many motorcycle riders have seen a leather jacket as a stylish way to protect themselves, not only from the elements but also from the possibility of a crash. While this may seem hard to believe – it’s not like leather comes with a large amount of padding, after all – leather has actually been shown to offer more protection than your average vinyl jacket or equivalent.
Maybe you’re not hopping on a motorcycle anytime soon, but you can still treat yourself to this biker-inspired Saint Laurent leather jacket. With a price tag surpassing $5,000, it’s certainly our premium pick on this list, but if you’re looking for the leather jacket of a lifetime, you have it right here. This pick is sure to come with the “for life” quality Saint Laurent is particularly known for.
3. Reiss Keith Leather Cafe Racer Jacket
Reiss is a British fashion retailer that’s been around since the 1970s. For the first 30 years of its brand history, it focused solely on men’s fashion before eventually expanding to carry items for women as well. However, the fact high-quality items for men are at the heart of this brand is very apparent through their simple wardrobe staples such as the Keith leather cafe racer jacket.
This Reiss jacket comes at a considerably lower price point than its counterparts, which makes it a pick that packs a lot of value. It’s made from super-soft leather and features a full lining. It’s the perfect choice for anybody who prefers a slim-fit jacket.
4. Lavendard Brown Leather Bike Jacket
The Jacket Maker has something for everyone, including guys that are a bit intimidated by purchasing their first leather jacket. Not only is the Lavendard incredibly affordable, but it also has a really approachable look despite its biker moniker. With open hem cuffs and a tailored fit, it looks great with badass-inspired outfits as well as everyday wear.
The Lavendard is made of real cowhide, which means it will take on a great patina over time. But it might be a bit stiff when you first get it. The more you wear it, the faster it’ll form to your body, break-in, and soften up. The fact that it goes with so many outfits will help speed up that process.
5. Ksubi Capital Leather Jacket
The Capital Leather Jacket from Ksubi comes in 100% authentic leather and is designed to have a biker fit. It’s heavy-duty with a protective interior quilted lining. It also features retro details such as antique zippers.
Kusbi is an Australian fashion label that’s existed since the 1990s. While the brand was originally focused on high-end denim, they’ve expanded their offerings over time to include other textiles such as leather. Items from Ksubi’s collections have been shown at such high-profile events as New York Fashion Week and London Fashion Week, and the company operates a flagship store in New York’s SOHO neighborhood.
6. Acne Studios Off-Centred Zipper Biker Jacket
Swedish fashion powerhouse Acne Studios is well-known for their basic wardrobe pieces, so it makes sense that they would have the classic leather jacket look on lock. We love the way this off-centered jacket packs a punch of personality with its multiple buckles and zippers, but we love even more the way that it does not compromise softness or comfort at the expense of appearance.
This jacket comes with a high-end price tag, but it has the high-end materials to match. It is made of 100% genuine lambskin and comes with an interior lining of 100% viscose. Its unique off-center zip takes its inspiration from street style.
7. Airin G-1 Black and White Leather Jacket
There’s only one way to improve upon a traditional bomber: Add shearling fabric. The Jacket Maker’s Airin G-1 Bomber will have ready to strap into the cockpit, ready to fly over Europe on a midnight air-raid. It has a thick polyester-lined collar as well as ribbed cuffs and waist for a nice, snug fit that keeps the wind at bay.
The Airin is made with real sheepskin, so it’s soft but super durable, making it a great choice for almost any type of casual wear. The dual front pouch pockets are great for a phone and a pair of gloves, so if you’re wearing it on a motorcycle, you’ll have the storage you need.
8. Saturdays NYC Leather Harrington Jacket
If you’re unfamiliar with the brand Saturdays NYC, prepare to fall in love. As a laidback lifestyle brand, Saturdays NYC infuses its love for all things surfer culture in all of its fashion offerings. While primarily known for their loungewear, such as sweats and pullover sweaters, they also happen to make one of the best leather jackets on the market right now.
The leather Harrington jacket features a smooth design and has deep pockets for your convenience. It is made of 100% lambskin leather and features a lining made of polyester. Staying true to its brand’s carefree nature, this jacket features a more relaxed fit than many classic leather jackets.
9. Berluti Piped Venezia Leather Jacket
Unlike the other options we’ve included so far, Berluti is known less for being a fashion brand and more for being a leather maker. Since its inception in the late 19th century, the Paris-based manufacturer has been producing fine leather clothing items and accessories, from belts to bags to jackets.
Berluti’s piped Venezia leather jacket is the apex of luxury leather fashion. Made from a distinctive brown shade, this jacket line has been around since the 1980s – and it’s a style that certainly stands the test of time.
This jacket is made from 100% authentic patinated calfskin leather and features shoulder patches and a buttoned collar. For optimal breathability, the jacket even features ventilation eyelets.
10. Dean Black Leather Biker Jacket
Let’s be honest.. A traditional racing-style biker jacket is about as cool as it gets. With the high band-style collar and heavy-duty zippers on the front of The Jacket Maker’s Dean Leather Biker Jacket, you’re sure to get that badass look.
The Dean is made with 100% real cowhide leather, so it might be a little stiff at first, but it will break in and patina like none other. The Dean features three zippered pockets on the front as well as zippered cuffs, providing that authentic racing jacket-look without killing your bank account.
11. Kingsman Burnished Leather Jacket
Kingsman is a line of high-quality clothing pieces that exists as a collaboration between Mr. Matthew Vaughn, director of the film The King’s Man, and international online fashion retailer MR PORTER. The line features items that are inspired by classic military style and timeless sensibilities.
The burnished leather jacket from the Kingsman line is unique for its length as well as its appearance. It draws direct inspiration from an aviator jacket worn on-screen in The King’s Man, a period piece that takes place in the 1940s. The jacket is made out of sturdy cow leather and buttons made of buffalo horns. It also features two linings – one made of cotton, and one made of viscose.
12. AllSaints Milo Leather Biker Jacket
AllSaints is a British fashion brand from the United Kingdom. Since its founding in the 1990s, it has grown to an international presence that consists of more than 200 retail stores across Europe, North America, and Asia. The brand is mostly focused on fashion for women and men, though it also sells footwear and other accessories. It has primarily seen its popularity grow thanks to its popularity among a celebrity clientele.
AllSaints makes a number of leather jackets, but the Milo biker jacket is definitely one to write home about. This is a jacket that brings out the very best of two very different worlds – including a soft composition and sharp edges – since it is made of tender lamb leather and decorated to the nines with perfectly-placed zippers and buckles. It also has a distinctive slim fit.
13. Golden Bear Sherpa Jacket
San Francisco brand Golden Bear may have its roots in ship workers in the San Francisco Bay since the 1920s, but it’s evolved today to combine both utilitarianism and high-end style. Although not as recognized outside of its native northern California, to know the stylish jackets of Golden Bear is to love them.
The sherpa jacket, in particular, is exquisite. Like any Golden Bear clothing piece, it’s designed to be worn for life, and fortunately, it comes with a style that will be sure to stay in fashion for decades to come, with brown distressed leather and a notable shearling collar that can be detached.
14. Tom Ford Zip-up Leather Jacket
Tom Ford is well-known for their high-end scents and formal clothing, but they have a strong foot in the casual jacket sphere as well. Not that this zip-up leather jacket is something you would wear to a casual house party. Its sleek edges and formal design make it more than suitable for a fancy professional event or night out on the town.
True to its brand’s roots, no attention to detail was spared in the creation of this particular wardrobe piece. Its straightforward design features 100% authentic leather and a cotton and polyamide lining. It is truly meant to last for life. Made in Italy, this jacket has shallow pockets in the front and a zipper down the center.
Leather Jacket FAQs
While there are many different unique leather jacket configurations out there, there are four classic syles you should be most aware of. In no particular order, they are the leather bomber jacket (also called aviator jacket), the leather racer jacket (sometimes called moto), the trenchcoat, and the fencer. While bomber jackets and racer jackets tend to be more relaxed, the trenchcoat and the fencer are more dramatic.
If you care for your leather jacket correctly you should have a wardrobe piece that’ll last you a lifetime. Most leather jackets cannot be washed at home and must only be handled professionally. The first step to taking proper care of your jacket is to adhere to this rule.
You should also keep your leather jacket dry as often as possible and keep it away from extreme heat or cold air. If you are not going to be wearing your leather jacket for a period of time, such as during a warm season, then you’ll want to be sure that you are hanging it up correctly – this means out of direct sunlight and in a properly-ventilated area.
Determining how much to pay for a leather jacket is a very personal matter. For an authentic leather jacket, you will probably be paying, at a baseline, $500. However, this price can easily skyrocket from here, depending on the jacket’s materials and manufacturing process.
Some leather jackets can cost as much as $10,000! There is no right or wrong number – it’s instead about the brands you like and the style that you envision for yourself.