Ankle tattoos are famously used amongst both, tattoo artists and tattoo lovers. The design may vary, but the position of the tattoo remains the same. In the olden days, tattoos signified ranks, position or belonging to certain clans. They used to be marks of identification, of punishment at times, and many even wore it commemorate the dead. However, today, tattoos are solely worn as style statements. They are representations of thoughts close to your heart and mind. Tribal ankle tattoos are abstract designs that were usually drawn to ward off evil spirits and black magic.
Tribal Ankle Tattoo Designs and Meanings
The tradition of tattooing spreads across the length and breadth of this magnificent country. The diversity of tattoo designs is as rich as its cultural diversity. All the tattoos come with a deep meaning, religious significance and a background that has to be understood before you get it drawn. Kolam, which are labyrinths like patterns are famous tattoo designs from the south. They are associated with fertile lands and protective nature of a cobra, which wards off the evil spirits. Figurative tattoos such as peacocks, birds, scorpions and so forth are also famous Indian tattoo designs. Majority of Indian tattoos are dominated by geometric patterns, which are representations of celestial bodies and their placements, which are known to affect human life in a positive way.
These tattoos originate from the Kalinga province in Philippines, where the people hosted celebration to mark the accomplishments of the locals. Thus, the Kalinga tattoo symbols are representations of pride, honor, bright future and hope. Traditional Kalinga tattoos are lacy imprints, series of lines and patterns that run all over your hands. However, you can easily have these on your ankle to make them look like anklets. These tattoos are about a 1,000 years old, which are soon vanishing as new versions are taking over.
Orang Ulu Tattoo
The ethnic groups of Kayan, Sihan, and Lahanan inhabiting central Sarawak, near Rejang river in Malaysia are collectively known as Orang Ulu. Interestingly, all their tattoo artists are women. Their designs may be simple, but their meaning is equally intricate. They tattoos were drawn with natural products such as wood, thorns, grass fibers and pigments which were easily found in the nearby jungles. They believed these designs were torches after death, which provided the light for the next life. Amongst the Sihan and Lahanan, tattoos were prerequisites for marriage. As these tribal settlements are fast vanishing due to urbanization, their traditions are disappearing too. An ankle tattoo with such heritage would sure be a small tribute to such an age-old tradition.
Li is a collective name for five tribes, which migrated to China about 2,000 years ago and lived on the Hainan island. This island is the far south end of China, which is known as 'The Tail of the Dragon'. Li religion, practiced by these people was based on shamanism, which is an animistic religious doctrine. This is where the art of tattoos crisscross lines, insects, birds and other figurative patterns stems from. These tattoos were believed to carry the wearer through afterlife.
These tattoos are actually very big in size and cover the entire body, sometimes the face too. However, you can get a part of these designs on your ankles, if you believe in the ideologies of their origins. A tattoo is personal choice, which often symbolizes something close to you. Thus, think before you ink a design permanently. It stays there forever, saying what it is supposed to, without any alterations. So, think twice before you pick a design.