A new year tarot spread

I love new year.

Whilst a new beginning can take place at any time, there’s something about this collective moving from one year to the next and all of the accompanying reminiscing, appraising, looking forward and the creation of resolutions.

If this year hasn’t been a total stunner, we can gather strength and determination to do better in the coming twelve months. If it’s been a good one, we can use this time to determine how to carry our good fortune forwards with us.

New year is also, naturally, a great time for some self-tarot-reading!

There are plenty of spreads out there which suggest ways to look forwards, such as those 12-card spreads with one for every month ahead. I’ve never actually done one, as I’m not a ‘predictive reader’. I don’t want a month-by-month account of what this year will bring. I wanted to create a ten-card spread which would offer a clear appraisal of where I am right now at this turning-point, work out what has brought me here, so that I can establish a focus for my energy as the new year begins.

Of course – it doesn’t need to be December 31st for you to use this spread.

A personal ‘new year’ can happen at any moment in your life or mine. This ‘new year tarot spread’, therefore, is designed to be used at any major turning point in your life.

The spread interprets cards in combinations – though there are ten cards, there are only five ‘positions’. I really feel that when cards are interpreted in twos and threes they become more than the sum of their parts – as well as the individual messages of the separate cards, there is the conflicting/supporting energy between them, the tension and the flow, which adds a useful extra dimension.

New year tarot spread:

new year tarot spread positions
New year tarot spread

1. Centre (three cards)

What’s surrounding you right now. These cards can be very loosely interpreted, looking at the energies and influences around you. There is plenty of room to maneuver here – how do you react when you see these cards? Do they make you feel contented, proud, annoyed, confused?

2. Dusk (two cards)

What’s leaving your life at the end of this year. Interpret these as ‘past’ cards – important influences in the past year which have brought you to the centre cards above, but which are now losing their significance. How do you feel about these cards? Are these energies you would like to carry forwards, or are you glad to see the back of them?

3. Horizon (two cards)

What’s coming into your life as you move into the new year. You may already be feeling a glimmer of these energies and influences moving in as you look forward into the new year. How do they relate to each other, and how do they relate back to the cards which are leaving your life?

4. Focus (two cards)

Where to focus your energy in the new year. Here are some suggestions for new year’s resolutions!

5. Tools (one card)

A resource you can draw upon to help you. I like a ‘final word’ card in my tarot readings, and here I felt that it should be in the form of a tool to keep handy for the first months of the new year. You might want to adapt this position to suggest somewhere to not focus energy, or if you like to build an ‘outcome’ card into your readings then this card could also serve that purpose.

Enjoy, and happy new year – whatever time of year it is :)

New year tarot spread with cat looking on

Cards shown above are the Wild Unknown Tarot by Kim Krans.


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  1. Little Red says:

    Thanks for sharing Joanne – Magician and Three Wands on the horizon, flippin’ eck! Exciting times. I wonder if you might need to let go of the lovely World and Two Cups (really comfortable position) for a bit to allow this new, very active energy to come in…?I love the Nine of Wands. Check out this beautiful one in the Mary-el: http://www.mary-el.com/9wands.jpgAll that firey, beautiful red – it’s just the energising boost you need when you feel everything’s getting a bit much.Good luck developing the tarot!B xx

  2. Sarah says:

    Oh my goodness thank you so much for posting!! I haven’t done a tarot spread in literally years, and this was a great reintroduction. The reading – even with my tricky and super esoteric Salvador Dali deck – just felt so right.

    Here’s what I got:

    (1) 8 cups, Ace Wands, Ace Cups…
    I’ve been dating my butt off recently and I’m feeling a bit exhausted. But I also feel like I’m on the journey I need to go on, even though its hard at times.

    (2) 2 cups, The Tower ….
    Uhhh yeah…. I came out to myself and everyone else last year. So that 100% makes sense ????! 2014 was a heck of a year in terms of love/sex/transformation

    (3) The Empress, 8 wands…
    I love her strength and femininity, I feel like she is the best of myself… and yep I’m still on that journey!

    (4) 2 pentacles, The Star …
    The star is so hopeful and graceful (plus she’s a babe! An Aquarian babe). 2 of pentacles in the Dali deck is this powerful transformative God. When I looked at the symbolism and read up on these cards, the idea of yoga appeared implicitly or explicitly over and over again. I love my yoga practice, so yep! That’s what I will do this year! Practice more!

    (5) 6 pentacles – I’m not real sure about this one? I do volunteer work at a charity so it could be referring to that being a source of strength. Or it could be a warning not to blindly assume the master or the disciple role …hmmm.

    Happy New Year to you! I’m going go dust off my yoga mat heheh x

  3. marieke says:

    Just got my wild unknown deck send from little red tarot, just did the 2016 spread, wow! it was so inspiring and gave me so much insight in my life and everything that has happend and going to appear. Great cards and great spread! thanks so much for posting this online!

  4. Chelsea says:

    I got my first tarot deck a few months back, and after having a good first connection with it I began to feel hesitant and anxious about doing readings. But I felt that as it is the new year I would like to do a reading to get an idea of where I was headed. I stumbled upon this spread and it was so wonderful! It provided the foundation for a really meaningful and self reflective reading for me – so thank you!

    My cards were:

    1. Two of Pentacles, Six of Pentacles, and Five of Pentacles – This made me laugh, cause lately what’s been on my mind most has been “MONEY, MONEY, MONEY” and I feel like this was a not so subtle reminder from my deck to let go of some of the worry and recognise the prosperity in my life.

    2. Ten of Wands, The World – Such an accurate reflection of the past year full of challenges, changes, but ultimately triumphs…

    3. Ace of Pentacles, Eight of Cups – There’s such a nice coalescence between the Ace of Pentacles and the dusk cards, its continuing the work-and-reward pattern from last year into the new year, and signalling to me that my success is in my hands alone. I think the Eight of Cups is encouraging me to make self-discovery a priority this year, and not to let it fall by the way side as I get busy.

    4. King of Swords, The Star – What powerful energy to make my focus, and a lovely balance between the masculine and the feminine! There is such a strong theme of ultimate truth underlying both of these cards, which I will hold in the forefront of my mind, along with the morality of the King and the generosity of the Star.

    5. Queen of Cups – Funnily enough, as a Cancerian, this is my planetary card…I connect very much with this card, and believe channeling her energy will be my greatest tool in the new year. Intuition, compassion, and honesty are the keys!

    Happy New Year!

    • Beth
      Beth says:

      Wow, thanks for sharing this Chelsea! What a powerful reading – especially the combined World/Ten of Swords past year reflections. Happy Queen of Cups new year to you!

  5. Sam'sChick says:

    Fascinating spread. How would you interpret a spread like this if you were feeling really energized and positive about the upcoming year, and the cards seemed to be pointing in the opposite direction?

  6. I’m a bit confused by mine and a novice to tarot
    1. Knight of Wands/Queen of Swords and Queen of Wands-All court cards, do they represent me or aspects of my personality? The Queens are quite active too.

    2. Eight of swords/Ten of wands-Both are appropriate and belong to the past. Both are to do with finishing quarrels or conflicts etc

    3. King of Cups/Two of wands-On the horizon?? Twos suggests a choice and maybe exploring ahead further. King of cups though?

    4. Ace of wands/ace of swords–i think Aces are again, super appropriate to the position. Both are about new starts and beginnings and I feel like i want a fresh start and to begin anew

    5. 5 of cups—reflecting on my losses?

    Lots of wands in my reading

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