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How to Choose Your First Tarot Deck


Choosing your first tarot deck is an exciting and personal journey. With countless decks available, each with its unique artwork and symbolism, finding the right one can feel overwhelming. Whether you’re a beginner drawn to tarot for self-reflection or a budding professional reader, selecting the right deck is crucial. In this article, we will explore the key considerations to help you choose your first tarot deck, ensuring it resonates with you and enhances your tarot practice.

1. Understand the Basics

Tarot Deck Structure

A standard tarot deck consists of 78 cards divided into the Major Arcana (22 cards) and Minor Arcana (56 cards). The Major Arcana represents significant life events and spiritual lessons, while the Minor Arcana focuses on daily experiences and emotions, divided into four suits: Wands, Cups, Swords, and Pentacles. Familiarize yourself with this structure as it will guide your understanding and connection to any deck you choose.

Traditional vs. Modern Decks

Traditional decks, such as the Rider-Waite Tarot, have been used for over a century and are the foundation for many modern decks. They follow a classic structure and symbolism that is widely recognized and used in most tarot literature. Modern decks, on the other hand, may offer fresh interpretations, diverse themes, and unique artistic styles. Understanding this distinction can help you decide which type of deck suits your needs.

2. Consider Your Intuition and Connection

Visual Appeal

The artwork on a tarot deck is a powerful tool for intuitive reading. Choose a deck that visually resonates with you. Spend time looking at various decks and notice which ones draw you in. The imagery should evoke emotions and insights that feel meaningful to you. If you feel a strong connection to the artwork, you are more likely to have a rewarding reading experience.

Theme and Symbolism

Tarot decks come in a myriad of themes, from nature and mythology to modern life and fantasy. Select a theme that speaks to your interests and spiritual beliefs. Additionally, consider the symbolism used in the deck. Some decks stick closely to traditional symbolism, while others may offer new interpretations. Ensure the symbols and themes align with your personal understanding and intuitive style.

3. Research and Reviews

Author and Artist

Investigate the creators of the deck. Understanding the background and philosophy of the author and artist can provide insight into the deck’s intention and depth. Some well-known creators have multiple decks, and their style might resonate with you across different themes.

Read Reviews

Online reviews and testimonials can be invaluable. Look for feedback from other users, especially beginners, to gauge the deck’s accessibility and readability. Pay attention to comments about the quality of the cards, the guidebook, and the overall user experience.

4. Practical Considerations

Card Quality and Size

The tactile experience of handling tarot cards is essential. Consider the quality of the card stock – it should be durable yet flexible enough to shuffle easily. The size of the cards is also important; larger cards can showcase detailed artwork better but might be difficult to shuffle for those with smaller hands.


A comprehensive guidebook can greatly enhance your learning process. Ensure the deck comes with a well-written guidebook that explains the meanings of the cards, offers sample spreads, and provides guidance for beginners. Some guidebooks also include background on the deck’s creation and additional insights into the symbolism.

5. Listen to Your Intuition

Personal Connection

Ultimately, choosing a tarot deck is a deeply personal decision. Trust your intuition and feelings. If a particular deck feels right, even if it doesn’t tick all the boxes, it’s likely the right choice for you. Your intuitive connection to the deck is the most important factor.

Choosing your first tarot deck is a significant step in your tarot journey. By considering factors such as visual appeal, theme, creator background, practical usability, and your intuitive connection, you can find a deck that resonates with you and supports your growth as a reader. Remember, the best tarot deck for you is one that feels right in your hands and speaks to your soul. Happy deck hunting!

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