Good Tarot Deck for Beginners or Nah?

Welcome Baby Squirrel to a new monthly series I am starting: Good Tarot Deck for Beginners or Nah? lol

One thing I get asked rather often from followers across different platforms are suggestions for good tarot decks for beginners. Considering myself to be a novice even I want to know the answer to this question!

I see often deck collections, or deck walkthrus, which are always really nice to see and make your own judgement call on whether a deck is going to be good for you or not. What I don’t see alot of are suggested decks for beginners.

I want to start this monthly series to discuss decks that stick very closely to the RWS system. Sorry to all you Thoth or Marseille users out there…that’s not in my wheel-house of knowledge! I am in NO WAY suggesting that I am a professional or know ALL there is to know about the RWS system and it’s decks…. what I AM suggesting, as a fellow novice Squirrel, is that it is important to me that my go-to, working deck sticks really closely to this system as it helps me to continue to learn and grow. Of course, once I reach a place where I feel more comfortable then I can branch out some more, but until then I like the cozy spot I’m in closely hugging a traditional RWS deck.

If your a fellow novice, learning reader as myself then hopefully this will be something educational and fun for us both! And if you consider yourself a professional reader, then hopefully there’s still some fun and entertainment as well! Each month I will be writing a blog/making a YouTube video to showcase tarot decks that are good for beginners because they are RWS friendly. Whether it be old decks, common decks, decks coming out and taking pre-orders or on Kickstarter, or decks coming out in the future…

For this first “episode” we are going to start with traditional RWS decks! I don’t know about you…but when I FIRST started to get into tarot I wanted ANY deck OTHER than a tradition Rider Waite Smith deck! I was like a kid in a candy store and with aaaaaaalllllllllllllll those other decks out in the world that are SO much prettier and enticing the LAST thing I wanted to use was a traditional deck! As a matter of fact I strayed REALLY far from the traditional imagery and purchase The Wooden Tarot as my first tarot deck!

Now if your a first time buyer I will say this much…. it’s the same advice I give people who are looking for a crystal… go with what speaks to you! Whatever calls to you, there’s a reason for that!

Although the Wooden Tarot was NOT the deck I ended up truly starting to learn with, it was the catalyst that got me interested in tarot. So that’s a good thing right? The funny thing is despite not wanting a traditional deck what-so-ever it turns out that a traditional deck is EXACTLY what I use on a daily basis. It’s what I learn with. It’s what helps me to learn the meaning in the cards. It’s what triggers my memories on those messages. It’s my best friend!

So despite all the pretties and shinies out there I want this first part to shed light on some options when it comes to the traditional RWS deck! Because I HIGHLY recommend that anyone who is wanting to learn the RWS system has at least one traditional deck! And I get it…you want to find one that speaks to you, and fortunately there are options.

( Again, I am not a know-it-all I do not have the time or energy to research literally every single deck that is out there. This is simply an introduction and I will give you quite a few different options. If you find something you love, great…if not I trust and believe in you that you are empowered enough to dig further )

Pictured above are some very common traditional RWS decks that can be found in most bookstores, metaphysical shops, or readily available online…

*Feel free by the way if you are interested or need to purchase any of these decks listed to click on the link which will conveniently take you to the product on Amazon.

Now listen, I know that we can over analyze each of these traditional decks and point out all the minor differences between them all (because those points are all very valid) HOWEVER, in general…all of these decks are basically exactly the same.

Again, I implore you to do your own research if any of these decks tickle your fancy. I am simply here to provide a plethora of options ๐Ÿ™‚

Still want to stick with the traditional imagery but want something with a little more bling? (Or lack there of lol) Try…

These decks offer the same traditional artistry that is the RWS deck but with a little flair! Gold foil inlays give the cards some bling which look really nice especially in the candle light. They definitely stand out and aren’t as “boring” as a normal deck. (Not that boring is bad, lol, it’s just my opinion) Or the vintage deck gives that old, used feel to the cards.

All of these are a slight twist by changing the quality of the cards themselves but not really messing with the traditional imagery! Giving beginners options that are potentially more aesthetically pleasing depending on taste!

These next few decks are what I would consider to be the “next level” of decks…

Sticking very very closely to the traditional RWS with a slight twist! Next month we will be diving into more decks like these to continue to offer a variety that is closely related to the RWS, however I did not want to leave you hanging until then…so here’s a little taste ๐Ÿ™‚

All 3 of these decks can easily be recognizable if doing a side-by-side comparison with the traditional RWS decks! These offer new buyers a little variety if the traditional decks are off-putting (I get it) but these do not stray far!

Thank you for taking the time today with me to go over some traditional RWS decks that are great to have in any collection as a beginner deck to work and learn with! If your like me as a first time buyer and are off-put by the traditional cards I have two things for ya…

Don’t worry your pretty little head off! We will work together to find you that perfect deck that will be excellent for your learning and growth while satisfying your aesthetic needs ๐Ÿ™‚ And don’t forget…as much as I DIDN’T want a traditional deck, it’s that traditional deck that has taught me SO SO much ๐Ÿ˜‰ So have an open mind and an open heart.

Next month we will dive further into those “next level” decks which add fun varieties to buyers while sticking with traditional imagery. Have a deck to suggest for next months blog? Comment down below and let me know what would be the PERFECT deck to talk about and I’d be more than happy to give you props for your suggestion ๐Ÿ™‚

Until next time Baby Squirrel…Much love, stay Squirrely!

10 Comments Add yours

  1. Traditional RWS is steady and trustworthy like the Knight of Pentacles
    For readings Rider Waite is a good way to stay focused and read each card slowly

    Liked by 2 people

  2. It was my first deck and I still go back to it for easy reference. I’m back to it again because I’m out of practice. Been years since I’ve done a reading. Forgotten what most of the cards mean.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. anj sad says:

    So true, I faught so hard against the traditional RWS, but you are right, it’s a good starting point and a good comparison point. “Keep an open mind and open heart” is excel advice, thank you and looking forward to seeing what other decks you feature in this list! Have an awesome one!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. E.C. says:

    You have some really good decks in here for beginners. I wrote a similar post that has recommendations for starter decks if a person has never read or is just starting. Good call on Morgan Greer. I don’t own it but I feel like I have to add it to my collection! Can I ask how you got into tarot? Male readers are far less common than female ones so I’m curious about your journey.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I feel like that almost could be the longest winded answer ever lol the short answer is 3 years ago I came across a deck, fell in love and have been working with them since! ๐Ÿ™‚


      1. E.C. says:

        Okay, now I have more questions! How did you come across this deck and why did you fall in love? It’s okay if it’s long winded — it’s interesting! I actually drafted a post on my own tarot story (how and why I got into tarot) that scheduled to publish tomorrow.


      2. Iโ€™ve always been in the world of metaphysics and magic since I was a child. Eventually life led me to being curious about tarot and the more and more I researched the more decks I came across until I saw the Wooden Tarot. I made a post about it if you would like to read. But once I saw the โ€˜Happy Squirrelโ€™ card I knew I had to have it and the rest is history ๐Ÿ™‚

        Liked by 1 person

      3. E.C. says:

        Yeah Iโ€™ll check it out!

        Liked by 1 person

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