Make your own collage oracle (or tarot) deck

A guest post shared by Jess.

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When I started reading tarot, I sparked an interest in oracle and Lenormand cards but had trouble finding a deck that fit my style. All I kept running into were decks with wispy or vintage art and motivational messages. Those are all keen and savvy, but they didn’t suit my personal style. I have always been heavily drawn to graffiti and lowbrow art, so I wanted a deck that reflected that sort of feel.

So I decided to make my own. I started working on this personal deck in 2014. Each time I finished a new card, I would fall more in love with this deck. Every card was made with randomness and intuition, I never planned out a card in advance. However, I did know that I wanted a good mix of positive, neutral, and some shadow work -styled cards (or not-so-happy cards you could say). It’s good to have a variation!

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My deck actually started out as a Lenormand deck, but after a while I decided to stray from the system and switch it to an oracle so I could have more freedom with it and a different card count. My deck currently consists of 28 cards and I’m not sure when I will finish the deck or what the ending card count will be.

My card creating process:

Card base – The base card I started with were blank tarot cards that I ordered online (search blank tarot cards). These made a great sturdy base for the deck.

Creating a card – I created the cards by collage using layered magazines cuts with a glue stick, nothing fancy! The magazines I used consisted of Juxtapoz, Hi Fructose, and Giant Robot. I’ve been collecting these for years, so recycling them for this project was perfect, I’m a big fan of recycling!

The glue stick I use is an Elmer’s X-Treme. You can find these in most retail stores that carry office supplies. This specific glue stick doesn’t give the magazine paper a rippled effect like most glue sticks do, the images lay flat. After I stick an image down, I used an old plastic gift card to rub gently across the image and press it down firmly.

How I chose images – As I went through my magazine clippings, I would intuitively chose a main image and begin my card with that. Eventually, a card title and theme came to me while creating. Everything was done at random and in the moment, I didn’t really plan out the cards in advance but you can certainly plan it out!

I also used Sharpie pens for card labeling and added stickers to a few. Anything that I thought would suit the card, I used. Try all kinds of things, book pages… photographs… print out words and images, you name it! Get creative, this is your personal deck!

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Why create your own deck?! Why not!

Creating a custom deck is a great way to connect with the cards and put your own twist on things. The deck will be a reflection of you and have a lot more meaning than any deck you go out to purchase. You can use the method I described to create a tarot deck too, that is actually my next plan and I have already been saving magazine cuts that reflect the Rider-Waite-Smith based system.

If you’re worried about your card falling apart, you can laminate them with a home laminator or scan your cards on the computer and get them printed professionally by an online card maker like for example, The Game Crafter.

I would love to see your deck creations, tag me on Instagram @tarotseed!

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LRT_bio_picAbout Jess

I’m an intuitive tarot reader and coffee addict! I run a blog – Tarot Seed – where I share my own thoughts on tarot, as well as deck reviews and other tarot goodness. You can find me on Instagram and Facebook.

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3 comments

  1. Melanie says:

    Thanks Jess, you have really got my creative juices flowing!!! I have always loved the idea of making my own deck but am not very crafty – you have made the process seem simple and doable, yay! BTW, your deck is just gorgeous!

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