making my own oracle cards

I’ve always loved oracle cards. I currently own four or five decks. For a while I also experimented with tarot reading on friends and they always seemed to find it a useful and positive experience. I feel drawn to the images, the words, the suggestion of deeper meaning. The thing is I just don’t use them. But I really want to!

oracle cards in progress

Every time I pull cards, I find myself uncertain, second guessing myself, checking the book. And when I’ve done all that, I always feel a bit disappointed. I never seem to learn anything new, or even anything that feels particularly insightful or helpful. Perhaps I’m missing the point. Whatever it is, something just hasn’t clicked for me when using other people’s oracle cards.

Then I realised. If something created by someone else, no matter how purely channelled, no matter how meaningful or beautiful, doesn’t work for me, why don’t I just make my own? #foreheadsmack

oracle cards in progress

I love to make things. Something about December in particular makes me want to hunker down on the living room floor and make stuff with my hands.

So I decided to make my own oracle cards, infused with my own meaning, signposts that are significant to me on all sorts of unspoken levels; cards that come from the depths of me, that work with me and for me.

So the first thing was supplies. I spent some time agonising over card sizes and thicknesses {having decided I wasn’t going to cut 50 odd cards myself}, and had a great time choosing my words. I decided not to bother with having a specific number and would just make whatever felt right.

oracle cards in progress

Mostly I used things I already had to hand, but I did buy some sparkly washi tape and a couple of magazines. I’ve had a corner cutter for years and never used it, but it’s really come into its own for this project. Curved corners make a huge difference in look and feel, plus – deeply satisfying to clip them off. Worth the investment. 🙂 You can see the difference below, although it is partly a tactile thing and about how they sit in your hands.

card before and after the corner cutter

Since amassing my supplies, I’ve been spending many a happy evening starting to build my deck. I wanted the whole process to be as fluid and intuitive as possible. I cut up all the words I’d printed out {in my favourite script font, which I use on this website}, laid them out ready, and then just played with combinations from my photos and the magazine images until each card felt right.

Design wise, I had visions of doing something very fluid and swirly, but I guess that’s just not how I roll. At least not when it comes to oracle cards. The added sparkle from the washi tape makes each card feel more…. something. Something good!

three oracle cards // tara leaver

I know oracle and tarot decks generally offer both dark and light messages. While I don’t want to disregard the dark, when I thought about how I want to use my deck, I realised I wanted it to be like signposts, positive reinforcements and guides to my best direction in that moment.

Perhaps that’s what they’re always for; all I can say is I know inside what I’m looking for with these cards and so I chose words that are largely ‘light’ related. Although I did pick some that felt more challenging, like resistance. Especially since in combination with other cards I could create my own unique recipe for how to move out of it. I don’t want to end up feeling like I’ve learned nothing helpful; these cards are guidance from within me, a way to access information about my best next step.

Here’s a selection of the complete set:


Overall, the process of creating these cards turned out to be far more enriching and gorgeous than I expected. By creating my own cards from scratch, every element included became infused with my energy. So now when I hold them and look at them I feel quite astonishingly happy and connected.

To be happy with both process and outcome is always a delight, and to have something you can really use at the end of it is another layer of lovely on top of that.

Practical Intuition