Choosing a tarot deck.

The Tarot is a deeply personal journey that each person takes in his or her own time.  It has been said that one must receive their first tarot deck as a gift . While it is certainly wonderful to receive such a meaningful present from a close friend,  it's equally important to find your own Tarot deck, one that suits your personal tastes and cultural affinities. Here are some simple guidelines that are useful in selecting a tarot deck.

  • Find a deck that speaks to you:  Visual Aesthetic is key!  Questions to ask yourself: What captures and continues to bring your attention back to the deck?
  • What is your first reaction to them? Do the colors and patterns appeal? Are you drawn to the images and the artwork? Can you look at the picture and decipher a meaning for each card? Look at both the Major and Minor Arcana cards, as sometimes the Minor Arcana may be rather plain compared to the Major Arcana. Look at the backs of the cards, too.
  • If you are new to Tarot, you might prefer a deck that is widely referenced in Tarot books. Or decks that have simple-to-understand symbols and pictures. If you are more advanced in Tarot, you may be drawn to more conceptual Tarot decks, or those with complex meanings and symbolism.
  • Will this deck be for personal use? if this is a deck for Tarot reading, it will be important that you are able to learn and connect to the meanings of the cards.

  • Most Tarot cards will be of a good thickness to ensure that you can continue using them for many years. However, there may be some cheaper reproductions that are not of such a good quality and the cardboard may tear easily or become damaged much more quickly.  It's best to avoid these cheaper types if you are planning on using the Tarot cards regularly.

When I first discovered The Wild Unknown tarot Deck I was in love with the beautiful illustrations, and the beautiful quality of the packaging.  What made this deck special was the use of the animals, the trees and all of the nature elements surrounding the deck.  Whether it be based on Celtic mythology, feminist spirituality, or Jungian psychology, finding the “right” Tarot deck cantake years of searching. When you find the proper deck, you will almost instantly feel in alignment with it's energy.  The imagery of the particular representation of Tarot symbolism you choose will resonate deep within your soul.

After picking out your deck, you will want to be sure it is sealed and hasn't been used. Most of the mass produced decks will come sealed, however, some self published decks may not. In which case, you will want to be sure that you have smudged your deck of any residual energy that it may have come in contact with. which brings us to caring for your tarot cards. 

  • How to care for your deck:

When you find the deck that's right for you, I recommend you treat it like a close friend. Tarot decks are often kept in silk, or any other luxurious fabric of your choice.  Wrap your special deck in that and keep them in a box of your favorite wood located somewhere special. Some places I would recommend are on your dresser, your mantle, or on your personal altar where they will remain undisturbed.

  • Cards used for personal readings should not be handled or used by others for public readings where they will be handled by multiple people. This affects the energy of your cards. If you absolutely lovea deck and want to use them for your readings on others, buy two decks and be sure to keep them separately, one for yourself and one for public use.
  • Cleaning: Your tarot cards may be cleansed by the smoke of white sage, charging under the light of the full moon, sunlight,  as well as the use of cleansed crystals such as clearquartz points, smokey quartz, and black obsidian are just a few of my favorites.. Some of my other reader friends keep their cards wrapped with sacred herb bundles like loose white sage and rosemary in their silk lined tarot boxes.

Remember, it’s absolutely OK to change Tarot decks later on. In fact, most readers use many different Tarot decks, and depending on who they are reading for or what they feel like on the day.  Personally, I have over 10 decks that I use for different purposes. Some are collectors items, and some I use daily.  I love each for their own unique nsights. I believe that as we fine tune our skills in tarot it is important that we also use tools that will help to challenge us, and continue to keep us visually excited with our intuitive development. 


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