Like most tarot readers, I love to collect tarot decks. I have lots. Every time I purchase a new deck for the collection, I silently say to myself …girl, you gotta slow down! You have so many decks! and then I try so very hard to not splurge whenever I set my eyes and heart onto a newly discovered deck that I just have to have. Yeah…it never works.
Such is the case with my newest find…Stella’s Simple Tarot!
When I first saw this amazing set of tarot images, it was digitally. The images are whimsical and transporting, taking the reader to another place – which to me is a quality ranking high upon the list of attributes a deck just has to have in order for it to work as a vehicle for visioning. The key to this is the journey that the images take you upon – it needs to be easy and essentially effortless. If you have to try hard or strain to get the process going, then the deck is probably not the right one. This deck effortlessly fits the bill, taking you on a magic ride, likened to falling down the rabbit hole, growing big one minute and then small. Once you start, the rest is enchantingly thrilling. I just had to own this deck. Finding, however, was a journey in and of itself.
The only description I had for my set of digital images was “AnAn Tarot”. I thought …this should be easy. This is such a great deck! It has to be out there still. I hope. Ha! It wasn’t long before I was eating my words and feeling that old familiar sensation of looking for a deck that is out-of-print or impossible to find for under a million dollars (Victorian Romanitc. Lenormand anything. Sola Busca.) So, out into the cyber-sphere I go, searching. I am the Fool.
AnAn Tarot is an ellusive creature. After days of searching I find three sites that refer to AnAn. The first one is a Korean site, all in Korean. The second, Japanese. Also in Japanese only. Darn. The third is a UK site, The Artwork of Modern Tarot – hooray! But, alas…no links. Just a name in a collection that is vast and nearly endless. And here I thought I had a huge collection of decks! This list was huge! There was the name: AnAn Tarot, but no link in site. Double darn.
Always the curious, I decided to check out this collector’s list and started making note of names of decks I have never seen and was not familiar with. It was an impressive collection to be sure. Then I started getting into the “S” category and spied a quaint little title: “Stella’s Simple Tarot”. I fed it into the web browser, hoping. Click. Gasp! I could here angel’s singing! There was my beloved AnAn disguised as Stella’s! Thank you, God/dess!
Some lists and references consider Stella’s a Majors only deck, but this is simply not the case. Seems that Stella’s was dubbed “AnAn” after a special little deck – majors only – was enclosed within the popular Japanese fashion magazine of the same name as a promotional gift when purchasing the publication in 2008. Upon learning this my heart sank, as such limited run decks are very valuable and ellusive and impossible to obtain. In fact, the original 78 card run is very easy to obtain through Amazon.com. Yay! I quickly ordered this prized deck and waited anxiously for it to arrive and when it did I was not disappointed! It is even more charming in person. The LWB is very interesting in that it has unique descriptions of the Rider-Waite style cards that waste no words on their meanings. What I really wanted to know more about was the author/artist of this imaginative set of cards. This has proved to be even more elusive than the deck itself. Everything I find is either in Chinese, Japanese or Korean and impossible to translate through Internet translators. What the LWB says is the most I have been able to dig up. The deck was conceived by and for Stella Kaoruko by Takako Hoei. Stella is a renouned authority on astrology and tarot in Japan. She received a vision of the archangel Gabriel while viewing Frangelico’s “The Annunciation” at Italy’s San Marco Museum at the tender age of 22. The rest, as they say, is history, as she delved into an immersive quest for knowledge of the world’s religions, as well as astrology and tarot. She is credited for helping hundreds of people by giving right and loving advice worldwide with her uncannily accurate predictions, inspiring right change for the better. Takako created the tarot for Stella at her lake shore home. The two are very close. I find it interesting that the most beautiful and inspired decks in history are collaborations between two people… Aleister and Frieda. Pamela and Arthur. Alex and Karen. This union of artist and intuitive always lifts my heart. Stella’s Tarot is like that…heart lifting. Hope inspiring. Door opening.
I hope you check out Stella’s Simple Tarot. It has a special place in my heart next to my other favourite deck, Lenormand. Please visit Stella’s Official Web Site to learn more. I encourage dialogue and discussion about this deck and any deck that you might fancy. Collecting is a passion and the cards are my muse, the indulgence my little vice.
There. I admitted it.
Until next time…