Tattoos Help Redefine 'Business Casual'

By MADLEN READ, AP Oct. 24, 2006 (AP)

-- Colleen Harris doesn't fit the stereotype of the buttoned-up librarian. Her arms are covered with a pirate queen motif and black scrolling tattoos, which extend down the side of her body to her ankle. A black rose and the words "Dangerous Magic" adorn the back of her left hand, and the words "Anam Cara" (old Gaelic for "soul friend") letter her knuckles.

The 27-year-old -- who has multiple masters degrees and a job at the University of Kentucky's research library -- feels no pressure to cover up. "It's not really possible at this point, unless I wore gloves," Harris said, adding that she thinks academia has been more accepting of her body art than the corporate world would be. "I think my qualifications should speak for themselves."