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Celtic Knotwork and Calligraphy

Intricate, neverending spirals and knots, fantastical creatures, and elaborately embellished alphabets are the hallmarks of celtic knotwork and calligraphy - from the ancient Le Tene metalworkers of iron age europe to the supreme achievements of the medieval irish monks.

This page is designed for artists and crafters, or for those looking to create a really cool website or newsletter, or those who just like to relax with grownup coloring books.

We start with Celtic knotwork instruction, move to Celtic calligraphy, and finish up with fonts and designs to copy and color.

Buy Celtic Knotwork and Calligraphy Instruction and Design Books
Celtic Design : A Beginner's Manual
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Celtic Design: A Beginner's Manual
by Aidan Meehan

Aidan Meehan is the chief guru on celtic design. This book is the first in a series, the beginner's step on the road to creating celtic knotwork. Other books in the series focus on single aspects: spirals, borders, letters, etc. You would definitely want to start with this one if you are inexperienced.

Here is a link to a list of Meehan's Celtic Design series: Aidan Meehan Books
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Celtic Knotwork Designs
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Celtic Knotwork Designs
by Sheila Sturrock

Easy to follow directions for creating knotwork using a series of basic shapes on a grid pattern. An excellent choice for learning knotwork and creating your own patterns, which can then be used for paintings, needlework, whatever you want. Highly recommended.
Celtic Spirals and Other Designs
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Celtic Spirals and Other Designs
by Sheila Sturrock

Another great step-by-step manual from Sturrock, this time beginning with simple spirals, then moving to more complex mazes and embellishments. Once again, you are led to create your own Celtic designs using the basic elements.
Celtic Hand Stroke by Stroke
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Celtic Hand Stroke by Stroke (Irish Half-Uncial from the Book of Kells)
by Arthur Baker, designed by William Hogarth

Step-by-step guide to Irish calligraphy, including what materials you need and lots of illustrations. This is an excellent manual for this particular style; it's hard to find books so focused on a particular topic and still useful to the beginner.
Calligraphy and Illumination
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Calligraphy and Illumination: A History and Practical Guide
by Patricia Lovett

The author is chair of the Calligraphy and Lettering Arts Society of England. In this amazing book, she gives step-by-step instructions from the basics to advanced design. The book includes history and chapters by other experts on specific topics, including heraldry. Tons of illustrations. Gorgeous, informative, wonderful for beginners and experts.
Celtic and Medieval Alphabets
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Celtic and Medieval Alphabets: 53 Complete Fonts
edited by Dan X. Solo

This book is just what the title says - bare-bone pages of complete font sets. A terrific resource for the calligrapher.
159 Celtic Designs
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159 Celtic Designs (Dover Pictorial Archive)
by Amy L. Lusebrink

Borders, alphabets and designs, of varying sizes (the book is 8-1/2 x 11), for reproduction and personal use as clipart, needlework, whatever. Black and white. As usual, Dover can't be beat for value and price.
Celtic Designs : 96 Different Designs
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Celtic Designs: 96 Different Copyright-Free Designs (Dover Electronic Clip Art Series)
by Mallory Pearce

Wow! Comes with book and CD - the CD images come in a variety of formats (.bmp, .gif, etc.) and you can resize them. Use the clip art for whatever you want - no copyright problems. Who could ask for more?
Kells Coloring Book
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Color Your Own Book of Kells
by Marty Noble

These captivating reproductions from one of the most beautiful books of the early Middle Ages offer hours of coloring pleasure. Thirty full-page reproductions of artwork depict eye-catching borders filled with Celtic spirals and interlacings, celestial figures, saints, members of the Holy Family, Celtic crosses, and other finely detailed floral, animal, human, and fantastic elements.

Choose your own color schemes, or follow the guides to the original colors (all images are shown in full color on the covers). Captions identify each work of art.
Celtic Animals Coloring Book
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Celtic Animals Coloring Book
by Mallory Pearce

From Dover, beautiful pictures to color or ink. As usual with Dover, may be used (up to four per publication) for your own business or projects. For teens and adults, very inexpensive.
Celtic Design Coloring Book
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Celtic Design Coloring Book
by Ed Sibbett, Jr.

Gorgeous pictures, representations from the Book of Kells, for coloring or copying. Ignore Amazon's age recommendation - this is definitely a grownups coloring book.