Despite its reputation for fortune-telling, a tarot deck can be considered as a work of art. It is a tool that can be used for aesthetic and practical purposes. That’s why I enjoy collecting decks and appreciating the different approaches artists make to the archetypes.
Katey Flowers’ #Only10Decks video is a wonderful challenge to participate in because the premise made me reflect on the decks that I have. To make the process a little bit easier, I decided to choose decks under three criteria:
Sparks Joy – what decks inherently trigger joy within me?
Practicality – what decks are useful enough for me to gain information or entertain myself or others with?
Aesthetics – what decks do I enjoy looking through even without reading with them?
I would also like to mention that Katey Flowers mainly focused on Tarot and Oracle decks in her video and I did the same thing. You wouldn’t find any Lenormand, Playing Cards, or any other cartomantic decks in here. Now that the technical stuff is out of the way, I present to you the decks I chose:
Being my brainchild I had to include my very own tarot deck in this list. I always feel this pride over the fact that I created it, which can boost my spirits and it helps me to cope with creative lows. Aside from holding a significant sentimental value, I also have found that I can easily read with it both personally and professionally.
This deck is a special one for me because it was the very first deck that challenged my way of thinking with the tarot (read my deck review to know more about it). It helped me forge a connection with the archetypes that I hadn’t had before. It’s a deck that I can interpret with ease and I am just in love with Kim Krans’ illustrations.
A favourite of mine, I knew I had to have this deck on the list because of how joyful I am whenever I use it. Everything about it ticked all of my categories. It’s physically gorgeous, the cardstock is lovely, the imagery is evocative and readable, and it’s versatile. I consider as a Jack-of-All-Trades because it can be used for different types of tarot systems.
Each card in this deck is a portal in itself, which is why I love using it. The visuals have so much depth and story in it that I could spend an entire day looking at the card and excavating wisdom out of it.
Charlie Claire Burgess’ thought-provoking illustration for this radical and inclusive tarot deck snagged my heart the moment I laid my eyes on it. Using it in my daily and client readings, has proved to be such an indispensable companion.
- Smith-Waite Centennial Tarot Deck by U.S. Games
I would be lying if I didn’t include this seminal deck in this list. The Rider Waite Smith Tarot system is one of my gateways into the life-changing world of tarot (my very first tarot deck was a Halloween-themed clone). The images in the card are archetypal and magical in themselves. Similar to Wayhome, analysing the symbolism and making meaning out of it was crucial for my learning. The Centennial edition’s vintage tea-stained appearance and heavy card stock add a certain allure to it.
- Playing Marseille by Ryan Edward
It would be negligent of me if I forget to include a Tarot de Marseilles deck because I need something to predict stuff with and I am obsessed with the illustration style of the Playing Marseille. I opted for this version because it can act as a playing card set too, which is so handy and clever.
This sassy and straightforward oracle helps to ground me by snapping me out of my reverie by means of its jolting imagery and words. This is a no-holds-barred and I love that about it. Unlike most oracle decks, this one does not shy away from calling my shit out and I appreciate that.
When I need to gain some deep wisdom, I tend to seek out this sophisticated oracle deck. It is lusciously designed and intelligently crafted quality makes me so happy. Whenever I hold it in my hands, I am so inspired and motivated to create something like it and for that, it deserves a slot on this list.
- Legendary Ladies by Ann Shen
Whenever I feel like I need nurturing and care I instantly gravitate toward this oracle. Ann Shen’s illustrations of these goddesses are stunning. Whenever I use it, I feel like these deities are looking after me.
That’s it, folks! Those are the tarot and oracle decks I would choose if I had to keep only ten in my collection. It may not be as fancy as some other people’s but I am really proud of these decks because it encapsulates my taste in art and in divination tools. I know that it will change over time, but at this moment I do believe in these decks and their impact on me.
Now I want to ask you, what will be your choices if you were forced to choose only ten to keep? Please comment down below or via social media and tag me @arcanesenses on Instagram and Twitter.