How to make your own tarot cards

Looking to make your own tarot cards? Not sure where to start or how to print tarot cards? Our guide is here to help you through the process of creating your own deck and will provide some handy tips that you can use for your designs.

And when it comes to custom tarot card deck printing, our playing cards and playing card boxes are the perfect solution.

What are tarot cards?

Tarot cards come together to form a deck of different cards, each with their own divine imagery and symbolic meaning. When pulled from the deck, these cards can be read to provide a spiritual guide to help an individual through major life events or within their daily lives.

A card reading often begins with a question. These questions can be anything, from asking about your future to asking how your day will play out. Depending on the card pulled, different advice will be provided to match the energy of the card and to relate to the problem presented. Multiple cards can be read together, each giving their own insight into the questions they are asked.

What is the tarot card size?

The normal size of tarot cards is 70mm x 120mm. This is the same size as our tall playing card. The larger size provides more space to display your beautiful tarot card designs and can be easier to shuffle. To accompany your cards, our tall playing card box can be customised to fit your deck and keep your cards protected.

Comparison between standard playing card size and standard tarot card size

How many tarot cards are there?

The most popular variation of the tarot card deck is the Raider-Waite deck. This deck consists of 78 different cards, featuring both major and minor arcana cards.

Major Arcana cards are not directly numbered, instead, they each have a name such as The Hanged Man, Wheel of Fortune, and Strength. The Fool card is the only card within this group without a specified position and can be found at the beginning or at the end of the Major Arcana tarot card order. These cards provide insight to the larger life events you may experience.

Minor Arcana cards are split into four different suites – swords, wands, cups, and pentacles - and are numbered ace-ten with the addition of the King, Queen, Page, and Knight. These cards represent the day-to-day life events, with the numbers on the cards showing the point in that event you currently are, with the ace being the beginning and ten towards the end.

What are the 78 tarot cards?

So, what are the 78 tarot cards found in the Raider-Waite deck? Here is a list of tarot cards in order:

Major Arcana

  • The Fool
  • I The Magician
  • II The High Priestess
  • III The Empress
  • IV The Emperor
  • V The Hierophant
  • VI The Lovers
  • VII The Chariot
  • VIII Strength
  • IX The Hermit
  • X Wheel of Fortune
  • XI Justice
  • XII The Hanged Man
  • XIII Death
  • XIV Temperance
  • XV The Devil
  • XVI The Tower
  • XVII The Star
  • XVIII The Moon
  • XIX The Sun
  • XX Judgement
  • XXI The World

Minor Arcana - Suit of Wands

  • Ace of Wands
  • Two of Wands
  • Three of Wands
  • Four of Wands
  • Five of Wands
  • Six of Wands
  • Seven of Wands
  • Eight of Wands
  • Nine of Wands
  • Ten of Wands
  • Page of Wands
  • Knight of Wands
  • Queen of Wands
  • King of Wands

Minor Arcana - Suit of Cups

  • Ace of Cups
  • Two of Cups
  • Three of Cups
  • Four of Cups
  • Five of Cups
  • Six of Cups
  • Seven of Cups
  • Eight of Cups
  • Nine of Cups
  • Ten of Cups
  • Page of Cups
  • Knight of Cups
  • Queen of Cups
  • King of Cups

Minor Arcana - Suit of Swords

  • Ace of Swords
  • Two of Swords
  • Three of Swords
  • Four of Swords
  • Five of Swords
  • Six of Swords
  • Seven of Swords
  • Eight of Swords
  • Nine of Swords
  • Ten of Swords
  • Page of Swords
  • Knight of Swords
  • Queen of Swords
  • King of Swords

Minor Arcana - Suit of Pentacles

  • Ace of Pentacles
  • Two of Pentacles
  • Three of Pentacles
  • Four of Pentacles
  • Five of Pentacles
  • Six of Pentacles
  • Seven of Pentacles
  • Eight of Pentacles
  • Nine of Pentacles
  • Ten of Pentacles
  • Page of Pentacles
  • Knight of Pentacles
  • Queen of Pentacles
  • King of Pentacles

Of course, you don’t have to stick to this tarot cards list. The beauty of making your own tarot cards is that you can decide how many cards are in a tarot deck. For a slightly more unconventional approach, an oracle deck allows for any number of cards and for cards that are not found in the classic tarot card deck.

3 tips for creating your own custom tarot deck

1. Connect with your designs

Reading tarot cards is a deeply personal and spiritual experience. Understanding and feeling connected to your cards is crucial to being able to provide an insightful reading. The designs of your cards will affect the way you interpret their meanings. If you do not resonate with a design, the true meaning of a card may feel out of reach.

Instead, think about what each card represents. Research the meanings of each card and then write down what you think of when you hear these meanings. Sometimes, your first instinctive thoughts are the best so don’t discard them. This will help you to brainstorm your different tarot card ideas and direct you towards designs that you truly connect with.

Think about whether your deck is going to be for personal use or whether it is intended for a wider consumer audience. This will also influence the designs you create.

Decks designed for a wider audience use images that most people would link to a card. The images used may seem more ‘obvious’ to what the card represents, for example, many decks show the devil card as a horned man or with fire. This is so more people can connect with a card for their own readings.

On the other hand, decks designed for personal use are more likely to feature images that are felt on an individual level. These images are often specific to the person creating the deck and are unlikely to be as relatable to other card readers.

Modern tarot card examples

2. Think of a theme

Now that you have a set of clear ideas for your custom tarot cards, you can begin their designs. An important thing to consider when designing is that the cards in your deck should all link to each other in some way. The tarot card art should show a connection between each card and complement each other to avoid the deck appearing disjointed.

Having a clear theme to your designs will help link each of your cards together. For example, astrology tarot cards will follow the theme of constellations and mythology, whereas anime tarot cards, such as Mercenary of Duna, have a similar art style across each character.

The theme you choose for your cards is purely down to your personal preference. If there is one thing to take away from this blog, it is that you should choose to make tarot card designs that you know you will enjoy creating. Cards created without a passion result in a disconnect between the deck and the reader, preventing an insightful reading.

Astrology constellation themed tarot cards

3. Consider special finishes

Special finishes, such as metallic foil, can be added to your custom tarot cards to give them a unique quality. Our gold and holographic tarot cards are some of our most popular tarot card finishes and there is no questioning why. Tarot card designs featuring a luxury finish can elevate the appearance of your cards and evoke feelings of excitement for the viewer.

Knowing how you would like for your tarot cards to appear before you begin their designs is crucial. The last thing you want is to have created 78 different cards that simply will not work for the finish you have in mind. Instead, get in touch with our team who will guide you through everything you need to know about setting up your artwork to print custom tarot cards.

Tarot card ideas

The tarot card back design should be uniform across your deck. Different back designs make it easy to identify cards before they are turned over which can result in a biased reading. Instead, why not use the space on the back of your cards to promote yourself. Adding your shop name or business contact details to your cards can land you some new customers and encourage existing customers to go back to your shop.

Our large playing card acts as the perfect tarot card template and can be downloaded from our playing card page.

Alongside your custom tarot cards, why not include a guidebook explaining each card? Adding simple instructions for easy readings can go a long way to help beginner tarot readers interpret your cards. A guidebook also gives you the opportunity to explain the inspiration behind your designs and help others connect to the meanings behind your tarot card art.

How to print tarot cards

Our playing cards can be customised to print custom tarot cards. We have a variety of different papers and finishes available to make a truly personalised deck of cards. Not only can we print your cards, but we can also create a custom playing card box for your tarot cards to sit inside. To find out more about the options for your cards, why not contact our team.