I started reading tarot when I was thirteen years old. I was given The Universal Tarot deck as a birthday present from my mother and was mystified by the deck, the images and the iconography. I was always an academic, I immediately researched and studied. It was a fascination that still perplexes and entertains me today. For many years I read with that treasured deck and kept it very pristine, I’d let no one touch it or handle the deck. You could ask any of my friends I grew up with, you warranted a look that could kill if you jokingly put your hand near my deck. I also was incredibly loyal to my deck and the thought of having another tarot deck felt like being unfaithful and dirty. I’d lust after decks that came out and even received a deck or two as gifts from friends but I’d always give them to another friend who would actually use and enjoy them. I was taken. I was a one deck lady, and that was final. However, as most people do, I changed. After I started reading more professionally, I found that a lot of people wanted to touch the deck and the cards being presented to them. They wanted to be involved. It pained me to do it, but I let them touch my most sacred divination tool.
It was hard at first but I eventually adapted. After a while, I decided I was going to go out on a limb and get another deck, so I could use it for the public and keep my deck for just me. It made sense. So, the seal was broken. I got a new deck then all hell broke loose. I lusted after decks and started getting them whenever I could. I felt the different energies and themes and fell in love. I became a collector. You could say that tarot is the ultimate divination tool, good for answering any type of question whether it be love, finance, travel, family life, spiritual questions, etc. However, not every deck was made equal. I found this out by collecting. Some decks are more naturally geared towards romance and others towards witchcraft. It makes collecting make sense, at least that’s what I’m telling myself now. Collecting isn’t for everyone, some may be incredibly loyal to their one deck (which I completely understand.) Others may not be fortunate enough to afford spending money on collecting tarot decks, this is a luxury.
Here’s my current collection and a little review of each deck I own (The cards I chose are some of my favorites to show the beauty of the artwork of each deck):
Ghosts and Spirits Tarot by Lisa Hunt
Pros: The artwork is absolutely amazing. Each card has so much going on! It’s so alluring and mystical. The color scheme is also very earth tones and blues, very spooky. The backs are reversible and adorable with three ghosts in a swirl of blue. This deck is so complex and fascinating because each card is based off of a ghost story or myth of different areas of the world. Good card stock.
Cons: This deck was supposed to be made for spirit communication and aiding in that kind of mediumship work, however, I have a hard time using it for this purpose because of how complex the cards are and the stories behind them. I tend to focus on that and get sucked into all the details. Some people may disagree, but that’s how I feel.
What I use it for: I honestly haven’t used it much because it’s not exactly what I had hoped for. I wanted a spirit communication themed tarot, which is what it is but I get too involved in the stories and can’t focus on channeling a spirit to talk to! It’s unfortunate because the cards are so gorgeous. I may give this deck back to the dear friend who gifted me the cards.
Tarot of the Mermaids
Pros: Love the water theme, there are SO MANY MERMAIDS!!! It’s awesome. The minor arcana is pretty cute too because the cups are shells and the swords are tridents. It’s a Rider Waite Smith clone so it’s pretty easy to read if you’re familiar with the RWS iconography. It is semi-multicultural so that adds some inclusivity. Good card stock. Reversible backs.
Cons: There’s not too many interesting surprises, it’s a RWS deck with mermaids.
What I use the deck for: General readings, getting in touch with my mer-side. I also use this deck in conjunction with my Oracle of the Mermaids deck by Lucy Cavendish.
Anne Stoke’s Gothic Tarot
Pros: Love the dark gothic feel, it helps bring out your dark side. Theres tons of fantasy here, unicorns, fairies, vampires, angels. It’s a fun mix. The majors are interesting to say the least. Not at all a RWS clone. AT ALL. So, if you’re used to that iconography-you’ll be SOL baby. I hated the descriptions on the Little White Book “LWB” and immediately tossed it! I then made my own meanings and it worked much better for me. The edge of the deck is now red, I did that. It’s originally white.
Cons: The card stock is thin and flimsy. There’s pretty much only white people/fairies/angels depicted so diversity here. The iconography is hard to read for a beginner because it doesn’t adhere to the RWS iconography or Thoth based iconography. The deck is also marseille style with the minor arcana, meaning that the cards are like the two of swords pictured here, a sword with two feathers (in this deck the angels are in the swords suit so all of the sword cards have a sword and the number of feathers pertaining to each card.) If you’re not used to the simplistic style of marseille, it’ll be tough for you to read. Non-reversible backs.
What I use the deck for: I use this deck for journaling and personal reflection. It’s just for me.
Shades of Magic Tarot by Jess Gore (Indie deck, not mass produced)
Pros: The deck’s theme is focused on insects, skulls, crystals, and magic. It’s really fun and I like that it’s black and white. It gives off a new moon magick kind of feel to me, the dark time of manifestation and growth. The insects I think are very unique and I like the choices like a queen bee for the empress and a lunar moth for death. They make sense and having those correlations are great for divination purposes. Reversible backs.
Cons: Some of the cards are a little tough to discern between wands and pentacles because there’s both in the card, if I remember correctly it’s the three of wands or pents… This is also a marseille style deck so it’s just a number of swords or wands or pents, no people, traditional iconography so you RWS lovers out there would be in trouble. It’s really nicely done in this deck though, I enjoy it but some may not. The card stock is thin and flimsy, not a deck I could use for a lot of professional use but that’s okay, I swap my decks out anyways.
What I use the deck for: I’d like to use it professionally but I can’t for long without risk of damage. I love the magic theme and would love to try some spell work with it, I haven’t yet but it seems like it would do really well with tarot spells. I’ve also used it for personal use and journaling.
Tarot of Ages
Pros: This deck has some really beautiful art work. The major arcana is Egyptian themed and the minors are all different ancient civilizations. The ethnic diversity in this deck is fantastic because I feel that it makes the deck relatable to more people. It’s also great for ancestral work and past life work. I cut off the white edges so they are much smaller now and could fit in a purse and be a traveling tarot for me if I chose to do that with this deck. Semi-reversible backs.
Cons: I hated the white border because there was already a small black border and tons of white in the labels, I cut off the border and loved it. However, I do wish they were a little bigger to better see the beautiful artwork. There is also A LOT of nudity in this deck, which is not necessarily a problem, it’s just a lot of full frontal for most audiences/public use.
What I use the deck for: I use this deck for working with ancestor spirit communication as well as past life retrieval spreads.
Tarot in Space by Laura “LED” Douglass (Indie deck, not mass produced)
Pros: Tarot in Space has such a fun theme and the creator had fun making it, I’m sure. Theres some adorable throw backs to classic Sci-fi knowledge like Laika the first dog in space and the popular TV show the X Files as well as original material by the creator. The iconography is pretty close to RWS with some added unique touches. I love the characters that you follow through each of the minors on their adventures together. I edged my deck with a blue glitter marker, the edges are originally white. Reversible backs.
Cons: The card stock is thin and flimsy. I can’t use it for a lot of professional work without fear of damaging it.
What I use the deck for: I mostly use this deck for readings for myself.
The Cosmic Tarot (Spanish Edition)
Pros: Beautiful artwork and absolutely cosmic and mystifying themes. The cards are so beautiful that every time I pick up the deck I remember just how pretty they are and sometimes just sit and look in awe. It’s a classic. It’s a Thoth based deck so there are princes and princesses, and those cards are amazingly beautiful. Semi-multicultural. Semi-reversible backs.
Cons: It’s not a RWS for all of y’all RWS lovers out there, its a Thoth based deck.
What I use the deck for: I’d like to start using the deck for professional readings, we’ll see how my mostly white and English speaking clients react to the Spanish deck. I love the Spanish language and embrace my heritage ( my father’s side is from Panama.) I love the fact that it is in Spanish because it’s keeping my language and keeping my bilingual mind functioning.
Rider Waite Smith Tarot (Spanish Edition)
Pros: It’s the deck that everyone thinks of when they think of Tarot (for the most part.) It’s another classic. The RWS is most often depicted in media whenever there is a tarot reader so many people have seen the deck before. Classic iconography, great for a beginner. A great deck for just about anything. Reversible backs.
Cons: No people of color, what so ever.
What I use the deck for: I’d like to start using this deck for professional use soon. It’s a new deck, gifted from a friend.
Golden Universal Tarot
Pros: The Universal Tarot is one of my absolute favorites (I’m pretty biased because it was my first ever deck but forgive me, it holds much sentimental value.) The gold leaf on the deck is amazing, photos can do it no justice. It’s unreal and makes the images pop so much! I love it. A great deck for just about anything. Reversible back for easy reading.
Cons: No people of color, what so ever. The back has no gold leaf, it feels like it should with so much on each card.
What I use the deck for: I use this deck for professional readings.
Modern Spellcaster’s Tarot
Pros: Absolutely breathtaking art work on this deck. The emotions on the faces of some of the characters are fantastic! It’s multicultural, LGBTQ inclusive and just all around amazing. The backs are reversible, I guess. It’s a little odd because there’s the animals that correspond to each minor suit and a pentacle, the pentacle will either be positive or negative so to me that’s semi-reversible. Others may argue that it’s fully reversible. It’s close to the RWS iconography but has it’s own uniqueness to it that makes it stand out on it’s own.
Cons: Some of the cards straight up terrified me. The devil, the high priestess, they are so realistic and scary that I felt some real heeby-jeebies! This is a good and bad thing though. Not everyone will react the same way, some of the cards just creeped me out the first couple of times I pulled them. The card stock is flimsy and thin, I’m not a fan. There’s already a chip or two on the sides of the cards from the light use I’ve given them and I’m pretty pissed.
What I use this deck for: I’d like to use this deck professionally but I’m afraid I’d have to buy several decks because of the thin card stock! Grr. Anyways. I also use the deck for journaling and self readings. The book that it comes with is lovely and recommends different ways to use the decks in spell work, which I could totally see as well.
Everyday Witch Tarot
Pros: I LUSTED after this deck for months and finally got it when it came out in January. I was NOT disappointed. Absolutely beautiful and endearing images throughout the deck. For those of you who love traditional witch iconography, you’ll love this deck. There’s enough RWS iconography that it’s close to it but also has it’s own unique theme. Almost every witch has a familiar with him or her and that’s just adorable. There’s so many things that I could just rant and rant on how cute it is and how great, but I’m not going to for your sake.
Cons: There’s very little ethnic diversity, I would have liked to have seen more. There’s also not many cards that are LGBTQ inclusive. The card stock is thin and flimsy and I’m mad about it too.
What I use this deck for: I’d love to use this deck professionally but I’m afraid, just like the Modern Spellcaster’s Tarot, I’ll have to buy multiple copies to make it last because of the quality of the card stock. It’s a new deck for me so I’m mostly using it for journaling and self use for now. I could see it being used in spell casting and rituals.
That’s all for now lovelies, if you have any questions about my decks or please feel free to ask.
You may also request a reading from a specific deck if you’d like to see how they read. Just request it in the Order Notes section at check out.