Celtic Symbols for Motherhood: 35 Unique Tattoo Designs

celtic knot of motherhood

Happy Mother’s Day to all those who are Moms or Moms-to-be.  I have one child and I’m expecting another this fall.  I have a tattoo for every significant event in my life, including my first son’s birth. (An ankh for eternal life).  It will be no different for my next child, whom I plan on getting a Celtic Symbol for Motherhood tattoo shortly after he is born.

The Celtic Motherhood Knot Meaning / Symbolism: In modern times, it depicts the bond between mother and child and is associated with the representation of the Madonna and Child.  It is an enduring symbol of the love between a mother, her child, their love, faith in God and her Celtic heritage.  However, since Celtic knots are an ancient design, pre-dating Christianity in Ireland, this symbol also can be known to illustrate the Triple-Goddess or the stages of a woman, namely: the mother, the maiden and the crone.  Some have said it can also represent the waxing moon, the waning moon and the full moon. These meanings are of Pagan or Druid origin dating back before St. Patrick.  Whichever way you wish to interpret it, the intricate design depicts the eternity of no beginning and no end – a symbol of everlasting love, life and an unbreakable bond.

Celtic Motherhood Knot Design: Traditionally, it is one of two hearts intertwined together; the lines seemingly have no openings, so they strongly signify an unbreakable bond.  One heart is lower than the first heart and both hearts are intertwined in a continuous knot.   Children are denoted by a dot which can be inside or outside the heart design.  Variations are hearts, starts, flowers, initials, zodiac symbols, colored dots symbolizing the birthstone or their names instead of the traditional dots.  The variations and possibilities are endless and limited only by your imagination. A phrase you can incorporate into your motherhood knot design is: Grá Máthair which translated from Gaelic, means “A mother’s love”.  Or you can use, Grá Mo Chroí which means the “love of my heart” or “my love, my darling”. Is there any love greater then that of a mother and her children? There is an old Irish saying that says ” A mother holds her children’s hands for a little while and their hearts forever.”

Celtic Motherhood Knot Colors: While it is most common to see them in black or black/grey designs with colored dots to represent each child, you can get your tattoo inked in any color of your choosing, top choices seem to be: green, purple, red, blue or even white.

Celtic Motherhood Knot Tattoo Placement: Because of it’s intricate design, beware of artists who will ink this too small.  Small designs tend to blur, bleed or fade if they are not done properly.  Some great areas to get this tattoo are: inner wrist, upper shoulder, center of the back between the shoulder blades, lower back, on your calf or above your ankle. Wherever you feel most comfortable with this tattoo is the area you should consider placement.

The Celtic Symbol for Motherhood – Idea Gallery

celtic motherhood tatoo with hearts

With hearts and dots for children

celtic motherhood tattoo in red

In red with black shading

celtic motherhood with claddah tattoo

The Celtic symbol for motherhood replaces the heart within the Claddah symbol

celtic knot of motherhood in blue and green

In blue and green with a snakeskin print

celtic motherhood knot tattoo with flowers

With flowers to represent each child

line tattoo of celtic mother knot

A simple line tattoo of the Celtic Mother Knot

grayscale celtic knot for mom

In grey scale with children’s names

blue celtic mother tattoo

In blue with red flowers

gra mo chroi tattoo

With Grá Mo Chroí and children’s zodiac symbols

celtic symbol for motherhood with initals

With children’s initials

Celtic motherhood tattoo with stars

With stars instead of dots

celtic knot of motherhood with vines and stars

With stars and vines

tropical floral celtic knot design

Tropical floral Celtic knot design

glow in the dark tattoo

Even in glow in the dark ink!

motherhood celtic tattoo

A dot representing each child

green celtic knot tattoo

Beautiful green, blue and yellow shading

children's names within celtic motherhood knot

With names inside the knot

simple purple and grey celtic knot for mom

Simple, purple shading

large celtic knot with children's names

If you are considering their names, the design may have to be much larger than the simpler designs

celtic mother tattoo with stars

with large star bursts

celtic knot rope design

The Celtic knot is in the style of a rope with three flowers for each child.

baby feet tattoo design

With baby feet – unique!

stained glass celtic knot tattoo

Instead of dots, color each section like stained glass – love this idea

floral celtic knot for motherhood

With flowers intertwined in the heart

Grá mo chroí tattoo

Grá mo chroí (the love of my heart) with initials of each child

small colorful celtic knot of motherhood on wrist

This simple line design allows the tattoo to work on smaller areas.

celtic knot with key tattoo

This is a larger tattoo as you can see it fits down her entire thigh, a combination of a motherhood Celtic knot and key to her heart

Grá mo chroí with shamrock tattoo

Incorporating the symbols of her Irish heritage – Celtic heart knot, a dot for each child and shamrocks.

white ink celtic tattoo

White ink is less prominent than colors

Ornate floral celtic mom knot

This Celtic Mother Knot is quite ornate in design

pastel celtic symbol for motherhood

Pretty in Pastel

multicolored celtic motherhood knot symbol

Love the halo over the dot honoring a little one who has gone to heaven

celtic symbol for motherhood with dates

Dates of birth rather than dots

green hearts and vines celtic heart tattoo

Hearts and vines, one in each color, for each child.

I hope I inspired you with my gallery of Celtic symbols for motherhood this Mother’s Day. Children are the most precious thing in a Mother’s life, it is no wonder why so many moms are considering tattoos to symbolize their bond of love.  With the deep amount of heritage and symbolism the Celtic Motherhood Knot conveys, it is easy to see why this design is so popular among moms of Celtic and non-Celtic heritage.  This beautiful tattoo is sure to capture the eye and signify the love for your child is forever.  Happy Mother’s Day to you!

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Comments & Responses

12 Responses so far.

  1. […] via inkedweddings.com […]

  2. […] voor, soms wordt de knoop gevuld met puntjes of sterretjes die ieder een kind voorstellen. Op de site van Inkedweddings staan veel meer voorbeelden van Keltische knoop […]

  3. […] a reader of my Celtic Symbols for Motherhood Tattoos post asked if I could put together a blog post for her to help her get an idea of what type of […]

  4. Maureen says:

    Did Brie get an answer to her question about a tattoo to honor your mother. My mother just passed away and I want a Mom symbol to honor her.

  5. Brie says:

    I’m hoping someone might have a suggestion. I’m looking for something to honor my mother not represent my motherhood.


    • Danielle says:

      I am going to get the motherhood knot soon to represent my mother and I. The base of the tattoo (to me) is symbolic of me and my mother and any additional dots or symbols will be added as I have children to represent them. Hope this helps your thought process and I hope you find what you’re looking for.

  6. Phyllis Robertson says:

    Been looking for something special to represent my children and I. Love love love the ideas

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