How to Choose the Right Tarot Card Deck for you
Whether you’re new tarot or have been using a deck for some time, when it comes to choosing the right tarot card deck for you it’s easy to feel overwhelmed with so many options to hand. As well as there being many ways to spread the cards for different types of questions, there have been hundreds of decks developed over the last 500 years; it’s no wonder it can feel daunting.
The good news is, more decks mean more choice, so then it’s just about working out how to choose the right tarot card deck for you!
But why are there so many different designs? And how do you know which tarot card deck is the right one for you in this given moment?
Cards Steeped in History
Did you know that the regular deck of playing cards we use to play games with our friends and families derived from tarot cards, which have been simplified down over many centuries from the first deck originating in Italy? Each new version has been slightly tweaked, redesigned or re-establishing the founding beliefs behind the cards’ power.
Whilst there may be many differences in design between decks, there are similarities which you will find across all standard decks, such as they always contain 78 cards. This makes it easier to choose the right tarot deck for you, because the 22 major arcana and 56 minor arcana cards gives it a scientific approach, of sorts. That leaves the rest of your selection process down to artistic and intuitive preferences.
How I Chose the Right Tarot Deck for me
I have the Original Rider Waite Tarot Deck by A. E. Waite (Arthur Edward Waite), available on the Amazon store. The Rider Waite Tarot Deck has been pretty much the most popular tarot deck out there for many years now, as its accessible imagery is a safe bet for those starting out. When my step mum introduced me to tarot cards, she mentioned this was a good deck. I had a look at a few different types of deck but was more drawn to this particular one. It felt like I could interpret the imagery more easily than the others, as they appear to be very symbolic and potentially have many different meanings.
Trust your Intuition
Key to the selection process is your intuition and attraction towards certain illustration styles. This may be linked to your background, hobbies, career or even just a comfortable ‘feeling’ when you look at the designs on the cards. Do they fire up your imagination and allow you to see past the symbolism into their deeper messaging?
Of equal importance is recognising where you are on your journey with tarot card reading, as some cards are better for beginners than others. Whilst an abstract deck may give you the aesthetic pleasure you’re after, it will probably be more advanced which needs deeper interpretation of the symbolic images. Beginner packs will often come with a book too, which will give you all the help you need to spread and read the 78 different cards.
Choosing from a Wide Range of Decks
Other popular tarot card decks include the 1JJ Swiss Tarot Deck available on the Amazon store, which closely follows the ancient packs. Diviners – those who read tarot cards – feel connected to the historical roots of tarot in the old school design.
Some tarot card decks are very modern in design, which might appeal to people who feel tentative about dipping their toe in the mysticism behind divination. The OK Tarot Deck by ADAMJK available on the Amazon store, is a favourite amongst bloggers and glossy magazines, owing to the beyond simple design resembling humorous greeting cards.
A great deck for beginners is the Everyday Tarot Mini Tarot Deck by Brigit Esselmost, which you can view on the Amazon store. It does exactly what it says on the tin – it’s a mini deck, and also comes complete with an 88 page guide for building confidence with reading the cards.
A deck that is seen by many as quite ‘magical’ but a classic, is The Wild Unknown Tarot Deck and Guidebook, whilst others might like something more colourful, like the Tattoo Tarot: Ink and Intuition. Both available on the Amazon store.
If you feel inspired by and connected with a particular time or group of people now or in history, you might wish to explore cards which represent their power, struggles and stories. Reading these cards will be a joy and more meaningful if you already have a strong attachment to their history. Other good tarot card decks on the Amazon store include the empowered-women in Motherpeace Round Tarot Deck (particularly interesting as the cards are round), the African American Tarot, The New Mythic Tarot Deck (featuring Greek mythology), Celtic Tarot Deck or the Egyptian Tarot Deck.
Final Tips for Choosing your Tarot Deck
To help you choose the right tarot card deck, it’s best to try and handle a sample deck and feel your connection with the cards. We do however live in unusual times where handling sample items is against health and safety regulations. At the very least, try to catch a visual of as many of the 78 cards in the tarot deck as you can, either in person or online. It’s also best to buy new, rather than purchasing a second hand deck. This is because the previous owner’s energies may have imprinted on the cards and it will be easier for you to form a relationship with the cards if you are the first person to own them.
It’s fine if somebody wants to buy them for you as a gift, but they won’t know how to choose the right tarot card deck for you, so try to do that for them! If not, don’t forget, it’s ok to have more than one deck. In fact, some diviners have multiple packs for different moods, questioners and types of readings. If you’ve chosen a deck that you love the artistic or thematic style of, be sure to read up on other information which will help you decide if is the right tarot card deck for you. Decks vary in dimension (physical size to hold), how thick the card is, price and even sometime other unexpected differences, such as how many cards the deck has!
I hope you feel more confident knowing how to choose the right tarot card deck for you. It’s a subjective experience, but can be lots of fun. So enjoy the process, and happy reading!