The one thing that all tarot readers agree upon is that the cards and deck of your cards are important to your success as a reader. However, deck maintenance is often ignored even though it is one of the most basic tasks of a tarot reader.
We all know that a tarot deck is different from any other kind of deck because of its card backs. Tarot deck decks are made of paper and velvet and are a modification of the modern playing cards. The cards themselves are built of a strong cardboard with a thin layer of tuck of paper in the middle. The card backs however, are made of a very absorbent material which is woven into a silk thread that passes through the card. A tarot deck deck, with its cards and backs, is then placed in a holder to hold them out of the way and protect them from dust and moisture. The deck holder can also be used to cover the cards so the deck can be protected from light, as well a
Maybe this topic comes up more often than I think and I wasn’t aware of it, I don’t know. Anyway, I’d like to share some thoughts on the effects of moisture on your tarot cards (ha…ha…I’m kidding….).
Have you ever noticed that a wooden door seems to expand slightly during the hot summer months? Musicians know only too well how erratic wooden instruments can be, depending on the weather and humidity. Paper products, such as B. Tarot cards are made from cellulose fibres (obtained from plant materials such as bark, wood and leaves). They are porous and therefore very sensitive to moisture.
Cardboard absorbs moisture from the air.
Card material is hygroscopic, which means that because of their chemical (alchemical?) nature, the cards will try to stay in balance with their environment, i.e. they will both absorb water molecules from the air and release their water molecules to the air to try to maintain this balance. The temperature, humidity and climate of the area where you live have a greater impact on the longevity of your tarot deck than you might think.
Moisture can weaken paper products.
Long-term storage of cards in a humid environment will weaken the paper core. High or low humidity can have a negative effect on the core of your tarot deck. At low humidity, the cards lose water molecules, shrink and curl up. It also leads to weakening of your bridges. High humidity means that too much water from the environment is absorbed by the cardboard, which can weaken the cards and make them more susceptible to breakage. Those who live in an environment where the ideal relative humidity is 50%, on the other hand, can tolerate a more severe treatment.
Ideal relative humidity.
The ideal setting is 50% relative humidity (RH). You can buy a humidity controller for less than $10 (USD), and purchasing one is not only good for your cards, but also for your health. High humidity causes many health problems such as increased fatigue, muscle cramps, disorientation and exhaustion. Low humidity can lead to chronic skin, throat and respiratory problems. People who suffer from eczema or asthma have probably heard their doctor advise them to get a humidifier. So taking care of the moisture will not only keep your cards in good shape. It’s also good for your health.
Do not expose the cards to strong temperature variations.
If you move the cards too quickly from very cold to very hot, or vice versa, the fibers of the card material will absorb and release moisture, which can cause the cards to warp. If the package is properly packed in materials that act as buffers, this can reduce the shock load on the cards.
Do not expose your cards to direct sunlight.
There is an old folk saying that you should not expose tarot cards to sunlight, and it sounds like a silly superstition. But I have seen from my own experience that there is a grain of truth in it.
There have been a few instances where I have not put the cards away immediately after use and have left them in a full tarot deck on my reading table, which was close to a window, exposing the cards to direct sunlight. I left it like that for a few days, and when I came back, I saw that the cards were rolled up. Nothing extreme, but still. They’re definitely deformed.
Why the silk tradition.
You’ve probably heard of the superstition that tarot cards should be wrapped in silk. In Renaissance magic, ritual instruments were traditionally wrapped in silk. Let’s leave the spiritual aphorisms behind and talk about the practical side.
Silk has long been valued for its ability to regulate and maintain thermal balance. Silk absorbs and transports (in this case, conducts) excess moisture from what it sheaths, helping to keep what it sheaths in better balance with the environment.
In addition, silk naturally protects against dust mites and 100% mulberry silk has innate antibacterial and antimicrobial properties. So for the care and maintenance of your prized possession, such as a tarot deck, wrapping it in silk has some rational advantages.
Check the humidity level in the storage areas.
If you are going to store box decks for an extended period of time, you should check the humidity level in the storage area.
When I was in law school, I had a moving box full of record players that I had left in the attic in the shed and forgotten about. Years later, when I took the box out, all the bridges inside were deformed, and now each bridge had an arch.
So if you plan to store a decking box for an extended period of time, consider the humidity and temperature fluctuations in that space.
If you keep new, unopened card games in hopes of making a profit when the game is out, you should also think about where you keep these games. Moisture can affect the condition of the cards in the box.
For example, wet basements would probably be a bad idea. Any place that is too hot, too cold and poorly ventilated is also risky. When I’m about to spend hundreds of dollars, sometimes even four figures, on an unopened deck, I ask questions about how long the deck was stored, where it was stored, etc. to see if the seller paid attention to moisture problems.
How serious is the moisture problem?
Fortunately, it’s not too bad, since most of us live in temperature-controlled rooms. If you’re not comfortable, your cards probably aren’t either.
You are likely to adjust the living environment to make you as comfortable as possible. This means that the humidity and temperature are already at a comfortable level for your terraces. However, there are a few simple steps you can take to keep your precious turntables, especially if they are collectables, in pristine condition.