Throughout lockdown, I’ve built quite the collection of tarot decks, some of which I’ve been rather lucky to receive for review purposes. Though I love each and every one of the tarot decks that I work with, there are a select few which I particularly treasure – one of which is the Hip Chick Tarot.
Designed and created by Maria Strom, The Hip Chick Tarot is a diverse, modern deck for women that’s both spiritual and practical.
Maria is a tarot reader and artist based in Athens, Georgia. She first began to read the tarot at the age of fifteen after recognising the deep, spiritual knowledge within the cards. Whilst Maria is in awe of the synchronicity and spiritual epiphanies that ‘the divine’ sends our way, she believes that the real practice is in recognising the divine within our everyday experience.
Maria found that she read tarot mostly for women, she, therefore, felt that she ought to create an exciting, empowering deck for women featuring females taking on the roles which were originally held by men within the traditional tarot deck.
Given that we live in an increasingly diverse society and with Maria being half Mexican – half caucasian, she also felt it important to ensure diversity and reality within her deck – she, therefore, wished to include all women within The Hip Chick Tarot.
This divine deck features seventy-eight hand-painted, bold, bright and colourful cards which Maria designed from a female perspective to empower women to grow spiritually, to be creative, to feel freely, and to think clearly.
The Hip Chick Tarot arrives packaged in a large, purple and pink, sturdy, cardboard, magnetic-close close featuring a fuchsia pink pull to open tab ribbon and matching hinge ribbons. Inside is a guidebook and the tarot deck which has been split into two for packaging purposes.
Although I have issues with decks which have to be split in order to fit back into their original packaging, I was quite happy to create a bespoke pouch for the Hip Chick tarot, as from the moment that I opened this deck, I knew that I would be using it so often that only the box would ever require storing and the pouch now follows me almost everywhere that I go…
The accompanying 112 page-black and white printed-guidebook includes further information upon the Maria and the creation of her fabulously funky and feminine deck, guidance upon how to use the cards effectively, four example spreads, and a page for each of the major and minor arcana cards offering descriptions and meanings. Finally, Maria has added some beautiful closing thoughts to her fabulous and rather funky little read.
Whilst this isn’t the biggest nor longest accompanying guidebook that I’ve come across, it’s one of my favourites so far. I especially enjoyed reading the section upon ‘no bad cards and no bad feelings’. The Hip Chick tarot is just that – it’s hip, it’s happy and it just oozes the power of positivity – I love it!
The Hip Chick Tarot is quite a chunky monkey; the cards are slightly larger than standard tarot cards and the deck itself is quite thick, that being said I find it very simple to shuffle despite having small hands. The card stock is of good, thick quality and whilst the cards have a mat finish, they are silky smooth to the touch.
The Hip Chick Tarot cards feature white borders and central labelling at the base of each card printed in a modern, funky font. The backs of the cards are a bright blue featuring a simple daisy – a flower which Maria specifically chose as she perceives daisies to be unassuming, yet beautiful flowers which are comfortable anywhere whether that be in a garden, being admired in a vase or growing upon a roadside. Maria explains that tarot teaches us that beauty is all around us, especially within the simplest of things, such as the daisy.
Modern Meanings & Modifications
Although the Hip Chick Tarot is based upon The traditional Rider Waite Smith Tarot, Maria has modernised the deck by altering some of the roles, figures, names and so forth.
Each of the suits within the deck has been given a distinct colour to help make reading easier: red represents the suit of ‘Create’ as it is fiery and passionate, whereas blue is associated with water and therefore the element of emotions, thus represents the suit of ‘Feel’. Yellow represents the suit of ‘Think’ as it is a colour which reflects the idea of illumination and inspiration. Brown represents the suit of ‘Earth’ as it is the colour of the land, and finally purple has been used within the major arcana as the colour purple is seen to be highly-spiritual.
The Hip Chick Tarot uses quick, easy and modern meanings through simple symbolism that can be applied to our own lives in a fun and accessible manner. Suns, smiley faces, moons, clouds, water, mountains, owls, plants, and flowers are all used within this deck to represent and suggest meaning within the cards.
The Major Arcana
The major arcana cards are mostly the same as a traditional tarot deck, though many of the names have been shortened (for example, The Fool is now ‘Fool’) and a few of the cards have been titled alternatively: The Magician is known as ‘Creator’ within this deck, The Empress has been renamed as ‘Nature’, The Emperor is now titled ‘Structure’, The Hierophant has been relabelled as ‘Sacred Knowledge’, The Chariot is now ‘Will’, The Hanged Man is referred to as ‘Hangin’, Temperance is now titled ‘Flow’, The Devil has been retitled as ‘Bound’, Judgement has been altered to ‘Reborn’ and ‘The World’, like within many other decks, has been renamed as ‘Universe’.
The Minor Arcana
There are a few differences within the minor arcana as the suit of cups has been renamed as ‘Feel’, the suit of staves/ wands is now named ‘Create’, the suit of swords has been renamed as ‘Think’ and the suit of pentacles/ coins is now named ‘Earth’.
The court cards have also been altered from Page to Child, from Knight to Teen, from Queen to Boss and from King to Queen. Though this may seem slightly confusing at first, I found it quite simple to adjust to.
Reading With The Hip Chick Tarot
These striking, vivid and vivacious tarot cards feature strong, diverse female figures who are designed and drawn to be dealing with the divine pursuits and life challenges that we can each relate to. The Hip Chick Tarot provides the ideal guidance, wisdom, affirmation, and support that so many of us need in order to tune into our own intuition and inner-wisdom. This deck is real, it’s modern, it’s gritty but groovy and I absolutely adore it!
I’ve been using the Hip Chick Tarot to carry out readings almost every day for the past fortnight and whilst some of the cards are a little different to the more traditional tarot, readings are clear, concise and easy to understand.
This has to be one of the brightest, bubbliest decks I have ever had the pleasure to work with. The Hip Chick Tarot (and companion guidebook) does exactly as it says ‘on the tin’ (or should I say box?) as it encourages and assists both readers and clients to be a little more daring and to make decisions that resonate with their soul rather than the expectations of society and others around them.
The Hip Chick Tarot is such a positive deck to read with – it’s so bright, colourful, friendly and easy to understand – I would certainly recommend it to readers of all abilities, including those who are new to the trade.
Pricing & Purchasing Information
The Hip Chick Tarot is available to purchase within the USA online via Schiffer (Red Feather) Publishing for $34.99. If like me, you happen to live in the UK, you can get a copy of The Hip Chick Tarot via Gazelle Book Services for £43.19 or Amazon for only £35.99.
What’s not to love about the Hip Chick Tarot deck? It’s bright, it’s bold and it’s beautiful! The Hip Chick Tarot is a gorgeously girly, groovy, modern deck for modern readers featuring striking and simplistic imagery ideal for readers of all abilities. Designed by a woman for women, the Hip Chick Tarot is THE go-to-deck for divas of the divine.
For further information upon The Hip Chick Tarot or alternative Schiffer/ Red Feather Publications visit www.schifferbooks.com
Disclosure: I was sent the above product for the purpose of this post however all opinions are my own.