If you’re a newcomer to tarot cards, or someone more experienced who is now questioning customary advice, you might want to know whether tarot cards need to be wrapped in silk. This article takes you through some of the factors and questions to consider in wrapping your tarot cards.
Should Tarot Cards Be Wrapped In Silk? Tarot cards do not need to be wrapped in silk but many people choose to do this because of tradition, mystical belief, or simple enjoyment of the feeling of silk. Alternative wrapping options include cotton, wool or other natural fabrics, artificial fibre textiles, or paper-based bags and boxes.
The wrapping of your tarot cards should not be an important factor in the quality and effectiveness of your readings.
Why do some sources recommend wrapping tarot cards in silk?
There is a long tradition of using silk to wrap tarot cards. This may stem from silk being a natural rather than man-made fabric, being a luxury fabric whose choice signifies the special status of the cards, or simply feeling good to the touch. You certainly can keep your cards wrapped in silk.
If you see no good reason to wrap your cards in silk, you are not obliged to do so, and it should not affect your tarot readings either way.
What can I use to wrap my tarot cards?
The short answer is that you can use anything you wish to wrap your tarot cards, although there will be pros and cons to using some materials.
Silk is a natural, breathable fabric and the traditional option for tarot card wrapping. Old silk scarves or furnishing items often have beautiful colors and patterning and can be an aesthetically pleasing and environmentally friendly choice.
As silk is produced by boiling silkworms and extracting the fibers from their cocoons, vegans and others concerned with animal rights may reject silk outright. A fabric called ‘peace silk’ or ‘mulberry silk’ is produced from empty cocoons after the silkworms have hatched and may be a more acceptable choice for some.
Wool is another natural fabric which can be used to wrap tarot cards. As it is animal derived, it will not be suitable for most vegan tarot readers.
Cotton, linen, or other natural plant fibre
Like silk and wool, cotton, linen, bamboo etc.. are all natural fibers which are breathable and biodegradable. Plant-based fabrics are generally easier to wash and dry than silk and wool.
Artificial fibre fabric
Some tarot readers keep their cards in bags or wraps made from man made fabrics such as nylon, polyester or acrylic.
Paper or card
You can keep your cards in their original box or wrap in other paper or card.
What shouldn’t I use to wrap my tarot cards?
You can use your common sense in working out unsuitable wrapping for tarot cards. For example:
Aside from the fact that some people don’t like to store tarot cards in artificial wrappings, ziplock or other tightly sealed plastic bags don’t allow any circulation of air. This means that traces of moisture (e.g. from your hands) could stay in the bag, condense on the cards and cause damage to their surface, especially if stored in an area which experiences swings in ambient temperature.
Newspaper is a cheap and partly natural substance which can be useful for wrapping some household items for storage, but it is not a good option for tarot cards. Newsprint can transfer onto the surface of the cards, especially if the atmosphere is humid or otherwise damp, and may cause damage and distortion to images.
Dirty or stained fabric
Don’t reuse dirty and/or stained rags which have been used for household tasks or DIY, even if these have been washed. Minute traces of dirt, oils or cleaning fluids could remain in the fabric and transfer onto your cards causing physical damage or unpleasant smells.
Can I leave my tarot cards unwrapped?
There is no rule which says that you can’t leave your cards unwrapped and some tarot readers simply place cards in a drawer. At the same time, a simple wrapping is often the easiest way to keep your cards clean and keep them together. For practical reasons most tarot readers will wrap their cards in something.
Does the color of tarot card wrapping matter?
Color itself is a feature of visual perception by the observer. The color of wrapping you choose for your tarot cards only matters if it matters to you as the card reader.
Some tarot readers prefer black fabrics either because black absorbs energy or symbolizes a particular aspect of mysticism. Others choose white for purity, purple for spirituality, red for strong energy etc… The color of your tarot card wrapping is entirely a matter of personal choice.
Will I give better readings if I wrap my cards in silk?
Practicing card reading, meditating on tarot symbolism, and learning to understand human nature and the wider world can all help you to give more effective tarot readings. Wrapping your cards in silk or anything else is unlikely to have impact. However, if wrapping your tarot cards in silk makes you feel more comfortable in handling and dealing the cards, it might be a good choice for you personally.
However you choose to store your tarot cards, there is no need to buy special wrapping unless you wish to do so. You can equally use boxes, bags or fabric which you already have at home. The most important thing is to keep your cards clean, dry and together.