Saturday, April 01, 2017

Tarot: a current list

Thought I'd better make a central list. Some of these descriptions are ones I wrote on this blog previously.

1 - Shakespearean Tarot - Bought in 1999 from a remainder store, cards measure 2.5" x 4.5". Came as part of a kit with a proper book. Lovely images, with quotes, all fully illustrated. I bought this one just for its art, with no intention of using it as tarot. Nice stiff cards, silky coating. The images don’t always tell you much, so this is a deck for someone who already knows their tarot.

2 - Vertigo Tarot - Bought in 2009 from Amazon, cards measure 2.75" x 5". The beginning of my downfall *grin* I got this re-release new, so full price – again, bought for their art (huge Dave McKean fan) but following a freaky experience at a psychic fair I found myself more open to their uses! Anyway, this also came in a box with a book (well-written and a work of art in itself) and a velvety bag for their storage. They’re tall, nice and smooth but pretty thin. The imagery is amazing, but again, it’d be hard for someone who didn’t know what they were representing to tell what they mean – there are clues, but you have to know what you’re looking for.

3 - Aquarian Tarot - Bought in 2009 second-hand from the Toronto North Market, cards measure 3" x 4.9375". Simple deck with LWB. Got this one less than a week after receiving my Vertigo deck. This one’s original from 1970, a little wear but excellent condition, in the original lidded box (with original advertisement inserts and LWB – “In this age of aquarius…”). The imagery is a little more close-up than the Rider-Waite, so some symbolism is a little different but it’s mostly as expected – but the artwork itself is absolutely gorgeous, lovely art nouveau style with solid lines, muted colours and lightly-drawn faces.

4-5 - Tarot Nova pocket and mini sizes - Bought in 2009 from World's Biggest Bookstore, pocket-sized measure 2.5" X 3.125" and mini-sized measure .625" X 1.125". Both come with proper books. I bought the two for myself and also another set of the two for a friend. Got them brand new two days after my Aquarian deck. The mini deck, let’s face it, I’ll probably never use or even separate (they’re all attached in accordion-style) as they’re way tiny, like under an inch, in a teeny little box, but they’re super cute and they come with a wee hardcover book. The pocket deck, on the other hand, is a bit of a surprise, it’s a full deck with fun, simple imagery that might just hint at the meaning of the card, but are totally be usable once you've got your basics down. They came in a box with a book too, more expanded than a LWB. They’re a good weight of card, but the laminate is really sticky – need to be scuffed up.

6 - Morgan-Greer Tarot - Bought in 2009 from The Occult Shop, cards measure 2.75" X 4.75". Simple deck with LWB. Got this one new about a week after the little decks. Came with a foldy box with an LWB. The artwork on this one is also gorgeous, and the imagery reminds me of the Aquarian, with similar symbolism and the close focus, but the style is different – the Aquarian deck is muted in colour, while this one is very bright. The images also go right to the edge of the card, which is interesting. They’re lovely.

7 - Necronomicon Tarot - Bought in 2009 from BMV, cards measure 2.75" X 4.625". Freaked me out a bit, so I gave it to my friend Mike. You all know I’m a recovering goth, right? I got this really for that reason, I’m not fully recovered yet. Held out for a week, then bought these. The entire idea of this deck is one that I wouldn’t use for a tarot reading, it’s all incredibly dark, but man is it cool! In a box, with a full book and a black organza bag for storage. Secondhand.

8 - Tarot of Atlantis - Bought in 2009 from BMV, cards measure 2.625" X 4.75". Came in a foldy box with an LWB. Great imagery, kind of graphic novel-ish. It’s a good size to use. All the cups cards have people sexin’ it up, not in an ‘erotic deck’ way, but you know. 10 of cups is a giant orgy. Ahem. Gave it to a lovely lady while on vacation in Ireland.

9 - Lo Scarabeo Anniversary Tarot (my favourite deck) - Bought in 2009 from Seekers, cards measure 2.625" X 4.75". Lo Scarabeo is a company from Italy that makes, guess what, Tarot cards - and for their 20th anniversary they decided to make an anniversary deck that combined Tarot de Marseilles, Thoth and Rider-Waite imagery, so I find it really easy to read. It didn’t come with a book beyond the LWB, but it did come with a gorgeous bag – gold satin-lined, black velvet exterior, with the Lo Scarabeo logo (a scarab, what else) stitched embroidered on. They feel good too. The LWB had an interesting spread in it too – I now notice that all the LWBs from Lo Scarabeo decks have their own specific spread created for them, nice.

10 - Tarot of the Magical Forest - Bought in 2009 from Amazon, cards measure 2.5" X 4.75". Okay, I wouldn’t normally be one for cutesy woodland animals, but this one was just so amazing I couldn’t help myself! They are based around Rider-Waite imagery, All with giant heads and huge staring eyes that really suck you in, very Taiwanese. Every time I look at them my throat gets sore from going ’aaaw!’ in a really high-pitched voice *grin*. LWB and foldy-box.

11 - Circle of Life Tarot - Bought in 2009 from Amazon, cards measure 4.2" in diameter (circular cards). I thought the art on this one was really pretty, although there’s a few too many fairies in it! It’s nice though, only the LWB for instructions with a really complicated reading method. Also came with a satin bag (yellow lining, sky blue outside, with a yellow sun embroidered outside)... and it’s ROUND! Yep, I wanted a round deck, and this was the nicest one available (Tarot of the Cloisters is no longer in print) so I got it. Not the easiest to read though. Gave it to a lovely lady while on vacation in Ireland.

12 - Grail Tarot - Bought in 2009 from BMV, cards measure 3" X 4.75". Not to be confused with the Oracle of the Grail or the Tarot of the Holy Grail. To be honest, this one was an impulse purchase. The religious overtones are pretty heavy, but the cards are really pretty, middle ages graphics. Interestingly, if you lay the major arcana all side-by-side, they look like one long panorama. Came with a book printed in sepia-tone.

13 - Universal Waite: Tiny Keyring - Bought in 2009 from Amazon, cards measure .8125" X 1.375". Simple deck with LWB in plastic case on Keyring. Universal Waite cards, done teeny tiny. Realized I wouldn’t be able to use them at all, and since I already have the Tarot Nova Mini (which is even smaller!) I wouldn’t need these – passed them on to J*, but they came back to me in a swap.

14 - Epicurean Tarot - Bought in 2009 from Amazon, cards measure 5" X 7". Came in recipe card box. Sort of a ‘stunt’ deck, since it really can’t be used as proper tarot. It has all the cards, but they’re really all recipe cards with the card printed to the side. A little thought was put into trying to match the recipe up with a card that might have something to do with it, but it doesn’t really succeed. Still, fun for the collection.

15 - Secret Tarot (mini) - Bought in 2009 from Llewellyn, cards measure 1.75" X 3.125". Simple deck with LWB. Some of these have traditional imagery, some are quite different. But they’re all beautiful - a little comic-bookey. Lots of dark overtones (the Magician is a vampire, for example). Smaller than palm-sized, which is what I was looking for. Nice stock, easy to shuffle.

16 - World Spirit Tarot - Bought in 2009 from Llewellyn, cards measure 3.25" X 4.75". Came as part of a kit with a proper book and customizable folded box. Gave away to a friend of a friend. I wanted this one for a while – very cool wood-cut look, vibrant colours and multi-cultural. They’re really big! No way I could properly read with these.

17 - Sharman-Caselli Tarot - Bought in 2009 from BMV, cards measure 2.75" X 4.75". Simple deck with LWB. Traditional Rider-Waite imagery, in coloured pencil. Easy to read, but I feel like I need something more from a deck. Anyway, the stock is good.

18 - Crystal Tarot - Bought in 2009 from Llewellyn, cards measure 2.625" X 4.75". Simple deck with LWB. So beautiful, looks like stained glass. Also sort of looks like the artist surrounded herself with Klimt.

19 - Arcus Arcanum Tarot - Bought in 2009 from BMV, cards measure 2.75" X 4.25". An interesting deck, visually it has a very 70s comic book feel to it. Graphic meanings are pretty straightforward and traditional to my eye. Nice stock, they slide well in the hands, a little bigger than a playing card deck but not too big to use. They don't really speak to me though. The LWB is pretty thick – and entirely in French. So of no help to me. Gave it to a lovely lady while on vacation in Ireland.

20 - Tarot de Paris - Bought in 2010 from BMV. What a gorgeous set! Photographic in nature, the artist took his inspiration from sculpture and the result is truly beautiful. He has reinterpreted the major arcana into new ideas (The Fool becomes The Source for example, and Death becomes The Crossing); the Court cards eschew Pages and Knights for Spirits and Stallions; and the suits are now named for their corresponding elements – Matter (Earth), Water, Fire and Air. The Accompanying book is substantial, hardbound and printed one-colour, and its explanations are nice – going by number for the minors ("Threes are generative...", "Eights represent the challenges of maturity..."). The kit also comes with a beautiful rose-window reading cloth. Large cards, nice texture.

21 - Truth-Seeker's Tarot - Bought in 2010 from BMV. These are really pretty gilded cards, with colourful illustrations that aren't the typical imagery – number cards show backgrounds and landscapes rather than the expected tableaus. A good size, with a smooth plastic-y feel to them (good if you like that but not my cup of tea). The book isn't bad, goes into detail to make the minors make more sense. I passed this set on to Xognya so she would have something pretty to practice with.

22-23 - Sharman-Caselli Tarot and My Tarot - Bought in 2010 from BMV. Complete Tarot Pack (including a complete Sharman-Caselli deck plus 'My Tarot,' the same deck but in outline form on matte stock, ready to be coloured in) – Nice kit! The two decks are the same size, just slightly larger than playing cards, and it comes with a one-colour book with full interpretations and exercises, plus a little pamphlet with hints on colour interpretation and how to use this in personalizing the outlined deck. As for the complete deck, the illustration style is not quite my cup of tea, but it's nice all the same.

24 - Druid Craft Tarot - Bought in 2010 from BMV. Came as part of a kit with a proper book. Gave away to a friend of a friend. Not sure what to say about these, they're completely gorgeous but a bit large for my liking, and the more I look at the imagery the less I feel it speaks to me. They're really beautifully illustrated in coloured pencil, following Wicca and Druidic imagery. A few of these cards (The Magician card, for example) have a definite aura to them, certainly.

25 - The Tarot Deck (Tarot De Marsailles) - Bought in 2010 from BMV. Large, with a gorgeous feel, but a super-abbreviated LWB. And I really don't think I can read with them, but the historical graphics make me happy. Gave it to a lovely lady while on vacation in Ireland.

26 - Voyager Tarot - Bought in 2010 from BMV. Such an interesting deck! Large-ish (both tall and wide) so not the easiest for me to work with, but the imagery is so different – photographic collage packed with symbols, reflecting (as they put it) 'a revolutionary new blend of traditional tarot, astrology, numerology, i ching, mythology, nature and technology.' Call it Fred as far as I'm concerned, I think they're beautiful. The back is even a DNA strand multiplied and rotated to create a brilliant mandala. Some of the cards have new names (Temperance is now Art, Judgement is Time/Space, courts are now Sage, Child, Woman and Man, and Crystals and Worlds replace Swords and Coins/Pentacles), but their meanings are still there to be interpreted. The kit came with the Voyager Handbook, not quite a book per se but at 88 pages this is no LWB.

27 - Tarot Art Nouveau (deluxe edition) - Bought in 2010 from BMV. I've wanted this one for a while, this is the Antonella Castelli set (there are several 'art nouveau' decks out there, this is the most stunning one). Gorgeous watercolour images, the cards feel nice, and it comes with an embroidered bag for storage.

28 - Manara Erotic Tarot (deluxe edition) - Bought in 2010 from BMV. Another one I've been looking for. Milo Manara is well known in the comics world for his erotic illustrations and this deck lives up to the expectation of beauty very nicely. Also with an embroidered velvet bag for storage.

29 - Gilded Tarot (Easy Tarot Kit) - Bought in 2010 from BMV. The cards in this kit are a nice size and slide well, and are nice and bright with computer-generated realistic imagery. Also included is a 200+ page detailed book and a layout sheet, which is interesting – printed on folded glossy paper, it illustrates the Celtic Cross spread and indicates the different positions and meanings

30 - Pagan Tarot - Bought in 2010 from BMV. Coloured-pencil illustrations and a nice size and feel, but I'm thinking they're not really speaking to me, it's all a bit too Wiccan for me (I realize I'm using these words to describe a tarot deck, yes). The new court card designations (Elemental, Novice, Initiate, Elder) are interesting though, and I really like a few of the individual cards, beautiful. The accompanying book is a good size with lots of detail and suggested spreads, and a nice satin bag is included.

31 - Tarot of the Dead - Bought in 2010 from BMV. Another set from Llewellyn similar to the World Spirit Tarot, this includes a box to decorate and an organza bag. The LWB is basic but good and the cards are a good size but VERY slippy so be careful dealing! The illustrations are cheeky and bright. The suits are new (Pens, Coffins, Pistols and Reels) with pips for the minors, which is too bad.

32 - Revelations Tarot - Bought in 2010 from BMV. I don't read reversals, but if I did this deck would make it easier! Upright and reverse meanings are recorded in the stained-glass-like graphics of the cards, which are bright and gorgeous and a great size with a nice feel too. Also from Llewellyn, it comes again with a blank box to decorate and a black organza bag, but also with a large 200 page book. Did I mention they're gorgeous?

33 - The Art of Tarot - Bought in 2010 from BMV. These are a nice size and have a good feel in the hand, the colour palette is earthy and natural, but the naive illustrations just don't speak to me – the minors are pips, which for me is a bit of a minus. The accompanying book, while thin, is full colour inside, which you don't often see with a kit like this.

34 - Hanson-Roberts Tarot Deck - Bought in 2011 from BMV. I'd seen a few of the cards online and thought they looked nice, and everyone goes on and on about this deck, so I thought I'd pick it up and see what the fuss was about. Well I'm glad I did, it's a lovely deck. Good size, good feel – a bit sticky from the gloss, I'll have to scuff them up to be able to use them properly. The imagery is pretty traditional Rider-Waite so easy to follow for a beginner. I like the illustration style too, the heavy black outlines and soft coloured pencil shading works well. The LWB is actually pretty detailed too

35 - The Secret Tarot (Renaissance Tarot) - Bought in 2011 from BMV. Previously known as the Renaissance Tarot, I must say this was intriguing right from the start. The cards are photographs of sculpted images in gold tones, which I think is an interesting twist. The minors are pips though, which doesn't help. Somewhat large but they slide nicely through the hands. The book that comes with the kit is pretty detailed too, so that's a good bonus.

36 - The Vampire Tarot - Bought in 2012 from World's Biggest Bookstore. Came as part of a kit with proper book.

37 - The Sacred Rose Tarot Deck - Bought in 2012 from BMV. Simple deck with LWB - for some reason, the Fool card is missing, though I'm sure it was there when I bought it!

38 - Zombie Tarot - Bought in 2012 from BMV. Came as part of a kit with proper book.

39 - Titania's Star Tarot - Bought in 2012 from BMV. Came as part of a kit with proper book.

40 - New Age Tarot (Wegmueller) - Bought in 2013 from BMV. Simple deck with LWB. Gave it to a lovely lady while on vacation in Ireland.

41 - Etruscan Tarot (Minetti/Alasia) - Bought in 2013 from BMV. Simple deck with LWB.

42 - Tarot of the Renaissance (mini) - Bought in 2013 from BMV. Simple deck with LWB.

43 - Manga Tarot (mini) - Bought in 2013 from BMV. Simple deck with LWB.

44 - Housewives Tarot - Took home from swap in 2013. Came as part of a kit with proper book.

45 - Intuitive Tarot - Bought in 2013 from BMV. Came as part of a kit with proper book.

46 - Wishcraft Mystical Tarot Kit - Bought in 2013 from the games store at The Pen Centre. Came as part of a kit with proper book and spread sheet.

47 - Babylonian Tarot - Bought in 2014 from World's Biggest Bookstore. Came as part of a kit with proper book.

48 - Penny Dreadful Tarot - Bought in 2014 from HMV. Simple deck with LWB.

49 - Victorian Steampunk Tarot - Bought in 2016 from BMV. Came as part of a kit with proper book.

50 - Klimt Tarot: Pocket Golden Edition - Bought in 2016 from Moonflower's. Gilded deck with small bound book in a lidded box.

51 - Harmonious Tarot (mini) - Bought in 2016 from Moonflower's. Simple deck with LWB.

52 - Radiant Rider-Waite Tarot - Bought in 2016 from the Psychic Fair. Simple deck with LWB, secondhand.

53 - Law of Attraction Tarot - Bought in 2016 from BMV. Kit with full colour book.

54 - The Sherlock Holmes Tarot - Bought in 2016 from BMV. Kit with monochromatic book.

55 - Cachet Tarot - Bought in 2016 from Indigo. Kit with huge cards and a full-colour book.

56 - Night Sun Tarot - Bought in 2017 from BMV. Nice foldy box with LWB, secondhand.

57 - The English Magic Tarot - Bought in 2017 from Indigo. Kit with book.

58 - Welcome To Night Vale Tarot - Bought in 2017 from Toronto Library store. In velvety bag, no LWB.

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