For anyone considering them special items, it’s important to learn how to store your tarot cards and oracle cards. And not just leave them lying around or chucked in the bottom of a drawer.
Since most if not all decks are made from thick paper or thin cardboard, it also pays to consider how to protect them from getting ripped, bent or wet when moving them outside your home.
When storing your card decks, so many choices are available to you.
You could simply use the original packet they came in or purchase something purpose-built. If you’re crafty and like DIY projects, making a unique box or a tarot bag is another alternative.
In this post, I’ll explain different ways to store your tarot and oracle cards and leave you with five tips to ensure they stay in good condition for years.
How to Store Your Tarot Cards And Oracle Cards
Firstly, Should You Keep Your Tarot Cards In Order?
Some people like to sort their tarot cards back into order before putting them away. Not me, though. I prefer them to get as jumbled up as possible.
Not to mention that sounds like a lot of work to me! In saying that, if you feel you want them ordered, then, by all means, do so.
I will start sounding like a broken record, but I firmly feel there are no rights or wrongs with tarot – everything is perception.
Using the Original Box or Case
There’s nothing wrong with keeping your cards in the original box. In fact, many of my oracle decks are still stored in theirs. They’re simply placed on a bookshelf in my crystal/reading room (my office).
The beauty of using the case they came in is that you know the cards and guidebook (if included) fit perfectly!
Not all of my decks are still in their boxes, though. Some of them came in fairly plain, almost ugly packaging, not unlike that which a standard deck of playing cards comes in. And, when it comes to my main tarot deck, the booklet that came with it is nowhere near as helpful or detailed as the additional tarot books I’ve purchased. So I didn’t see the point in keeping that either.
Hence I started researching different ways to store my cards.
Tarot card bags come in a range of fabrics, sizes and styles. You have bags that close with zips, buttons, drawstrings or even ones that roll up before being secured with a ribbon or similar.
As mentioned before, you could make your own pouch to keep your cards in. Or, if you aren’t into DIY, you can buy a specially designed tarot bag or repurpose a cool bag you find in a shop.
Some of the most incredible tarot bags I’ve seen are on Etsy. The great thing about Etsy is that people running small businesses handmade most of the products. As such, many items can be customised for you making them 100% unique! Just ensure you double-check the measurements of the products sold so you know they’ll fit your deck.
Here’s a tutorial from Melissa at handmadiya.com for making a handy pouch that you can either make as described or alter the measurements to suit. I recommend making the base section (marked as 2” in the right-hand image) three times the size of your deck’s depth. By depth, I’m referring to the measurement you’d take when your entire deck of cards is stacked up. Also, check that the length and width of a single card fit nicely in the body section with a little extra room all around. It’s best to avoid making something too small!
I store my Original Rider Waite Tarot deck in an ornately carved Sheesham/Indian rosewood box I found in a second-hand shop. It’s essentially a jewellery box, just like those sold at Trade Aid. All that’s missing from mine is the original velvet lining (I have plans to replace that one day), and they usually come with an inner tray, but mine doesn’t.
I absolutely love this box because it is engraved with flowers and is large enough to hold my cards as well as some extras such as crystals, a pendulum, and a neatly folded spread cloth.
I find that using a wooden box like mine is perfect for taking my tarot cards with me if I’m travelling away from home. Usually, this is when I’d add a nice cloth to the box so no matter where I go, I can lay it out and create a beautiful space to use my cards.
Another benefit of using a sturdy box is that your cards won’t get bent or damaged if put in a handbag, backpack or suitcase, for example.
You could use any sort of box that you like too, not just a wooden one. It could be plastic, thick cardboard or even tin (I’m thinking of vintage biscuit tins!).
Wrapping Your Oracle or Tarot Decks
Some people like to wrap their deck of cards in a piece of fabric, such as a silk scarf, before putting them away. A bonus of using something like a scarf is that when you unwrap your cards, you have a spread cloth ready to use!
Using a silk scarf isn’t just a random idea either; silk is said to help to protect them from any negative energy they’re exposed to. Whether you believe that or not is up to you. Really, you can use any fabric of any colour that tickles your fancy. I don’t think there is a “best” cloth for tarot cards – but if you disagree, that’s absolutely fine.
There is a “best” part to using a scarf or other piece of fabric, though. What, you say? Why, because it’s so easy!
You pop your card on the fabric close to one edge, fold that edge over the deck and then roll the rest around. You can tie a knot with the other ends, and voila!
Where to Store Your Decks
It’s also worth thinking about where you’ll store your decks if you’re like me and are getting a bit of a collection!
I keep mine on a bookshelf along with my tarot guidebooks, my tarot workbook, and other random things I have that relate to the metaphysical.
Alternatively, you might have a cupboard or drawer where you store them. If you have a nice chest (trunk), that is another good option.
You could set up an altar if you want to create an extra special place. I have a great book, Altars by Denise Linn, discussing ways we can use these sacred spaces in our everyday lives.
“The home altar was a sacred space, a visible symbol of the connection between heaven and earth. It brought meaning into ordinary moments of life and served as a focal point for communing with spiritual realms.” – Denise Linn.
She describes how simple it is to create one. You choose an object that signifies the divine, yourself, and something that represents the gateway between the two. For example, a feather, your deck, and a candle.
They can be as simple as using the three objects above, or you can create something more elaborate. Let your imagination and intuition guide you. Use crystals, incense, white sage or palo santo, sacred ornaments such as Buddha figurines, and flowers – fresh or dried.
Here are some photos of one I have in what I call my “crystal room” and office (excuse the lighting; I took the pictures early on a winter’s morning).
As you can see, this one has a plant (ficus), a bottle of an essential oil blend I made, palo santo, a bowl of loose-leaf incense made from flowers I’ve grown or been given and dried, and a Native American-style pocket flute. I’ve used lots of crystals, including a jar of small ones I collected as a young child and an old medicine bottle of tiny ones my dad gathered from various beaches around New Zealand’s South Island. There’s even my favourite pendulum I was gifted and sometimes use when drawing/pulling tarot or oracle cards.
Now, I don’t store my decks in this alter, but if I draw a card for the week, I often prop it up amongst everything so I’m reminded of the message each time I walk into the room.
5 Tips and Reminders for Storing Tarot And Oracle Decks
- Keep your tarot deck (or oracle) in whichever type of box or bag feels right to you. There are no rights or wrongs.
- If you’re crafty, make your own tarot bag or box! And if you do, send me a photo on Facebook or Instagram. (See earlier section for a handy pouch tutorial)
- If you’d rather purchase something, check out handmade options at places like Etsy or Trade Aid. Go treasure hunting for suitable storage at your local second-hand or antique shop!
- Place your deck in a bookshelf, cupboard or drawer or, if you feel inspired to, create a sacred alter they can be a part of.
- Pop a crystal in with your tarot cards, or keep one nearby. Use any crystal you like but if you want advice, use a tumbled stone so it won’t damage your cards. Try clear quartz, amethyst, or black tourmaline.
Ultimately, I believe it’s up to you to decide the best way to store your decks. I don’t think there are any right or wrong ways to do it. However, the general consensus is that they need some form of protective casing – whether it’s to protect them from physical or energetical damage, or both.
Over to You!
I hope you’ve enjoyed this post and feel inspired. If you find a neat way to store your cards, I’d love to see it. You can share pictures or message me on Love Laughter Cinnamon’s Facebook and Instagram pages. And if you haven’t already done so, give them a follow so we can keep in touch.