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Celtic Border Patterns

There are many different symbols used to make Celtic border patterns. These border patterns can be used for a number of things, like invitations, cross stitch designs, or wallpaper border. Read on to see what kinds of Celtic border patterns there are out there.

Celtic Border Patterns

Celtic Border Patterns

Making Celtic knots is also called interlacing. They sometimes look like a plait or a braid. The origins of these intricate and flowing patterns go back thousands of years and can be found on stone crosses, shields, jewelry, and adorning the pages of religious texts. Many Celtic designs come from the Book of Kells, also called the Book of Columba. It was an elaborately decorated religious text that was created by Celtic monks.

Many of these knots make beautiful Celtic border patterns for invitations, quilts, needlepoint, or to frame a picture. You can find them in clip art and art tiles. They add flare and a bit of Celtic charm to anything.

Online Sources

There are many places online where you can find Celtic patterns to stitch, draw, or weave. There are tutorials to help you get started and take you every step of the way. Here is a list of some of them.

  • Aon-celtic.com is a site with free Celtic cross stitch patterns. These patterns and designs will work for needlework and beadwork, too. Choices of patterns include: eternity knot border, Trinity knot border, Claddagh design, Celtic cross, triangle knot border, spiral border, Kells bird, and dancing Ghillies.
  • If you would like to try your hand at drawing a Celtic knot or a border pattern, go to nrich.com. Here you will find detailed instructions along with some coloring sheets and practice sheets.
  • If you are good at Calligraphy, you may want to visit Calligraphy Skills. This is a wonderful site for calligraphers. It has step-by-step instructions on how to make Celtic borders. There is a link at the bottom of the home page that will start with the basics and take you forward from there.
  • If you are interested in learning how to make Celtic knots, then Reed's Knotwork Tutorial is the place to go. It starts with the basic construction of interlace and progresses from there. Some of the instruction covers borders, or plaits. Once you have mastered the techniques shown here, a link is provided for advanced interlacing.
  • Lastly, there are sites with stencils to buy so you can do your own border. There are also places online where you can find wallpaper border with Celtic knot work on it.

Basic Celtic Knots

Following are some of the basic knots along with their symbolism.

  • The Triquetra knot consists of three parts that can symbolize the Trinity; the three parts of the world - earth, sky, and sea; the facets of man - mind, body, and spirit; or the triple goddess - maiden, mother, and crone.
  • The Serch Bythol knot brings two triskeles together and intertwines them. The triskele represents the three parts of man - mind, body, and soul. It shows unity and eternal love.
  • The Shield knot or the Four Corners is used as a protective charm and to summon the gods from the four corners of the earth. The corners can symbolize four seasons, four gods, or four elements of the world - earth, wind, water, and air.
  • The Square love knot comes from Scotland. It is woven into a square pattern and is most often found on wedding rings symbolizing loyalty and everlasting love.
  • The Spiral or Oval love knot is a simple knot that stands for timelessness of life. Its use dates back to 2500 BC. The pattern resembles four teardrop shapes that are intertwined.
  • The Round love knot was first found on stone crosses in the eastern part of Ireland. Its three sections represent the earth's forces: earth, fire, and water. The circle shape symbolizes the orbit of the sun.
  • The Triple Drop love knot has three sides that represent the three forces of nature: earth, fire, and water.
  • The Four love knot is a symbol for good luck. The knot denotes the four seasons that are interdependent on each other and represents two people coming together.
  • The Serpent love knot is very intricate and was taken from the Book of Kells. It represents everlasting life.