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Wednesday, December 10, 2014

REVIEW: Vintage Wisdom Oracle


Vintage Wisdom Oracle
by Victoria Moseley
ISBN 978-1-57281-781-4
52 cards
Cards and Guidebook
measure 3.75" x 5.5"
Box measures 4" x 5.7"

TOP LINE (formerly Bottom Line)

I confess that the art in this deck is not the kind I would normally be drawn to. Having said that, I also confess that I am drawn into many of the images – for example:

  • Protection (a “statuesque warrior goddess stands on the threshold between two worlds. . . Two regal swans, symbolizing the element of light, stand proudly at Protection’s feet.”)
  • Shadow Self (“Night has fallen and a young girl pauses beneath a stone portal, perhaps seeking guidance from the raven above.”)
  • Wisdom (“The last rays of the setting sun fall on this portrayal of mythic Athena, the Greek goddess of wisdom, and her wise protector, the Little Owl.”)

Some of the images, I also have to confess, strike me as just plain silly. It’s a personal thing, I know, and has nothing to do with the quality or talent obviously possessed by the artist.

There is a definite Victorian “feel” to these cards, and those who love that period will certainly notice and enjoy.

The more I wander through this deck, the more I understand its appeal. I am looking forward to doing one of the spreads provided in the guidebook and sharing it here on Tarot Notes! (And/or maybe a deck interview... hmmmm....)


From the artist: “My hope, dear reader, is that the spirit that inspired this project from the start will breathe new light on your pathway, and that the haunting beauty of these iconic muses will speak as profoundly to you as they have to me.”

From the publisher: “Vintage Wisdom Oracle deck presents 52 lavishly illustrated oracle cards infused with the beauty and inspiration of goddesses, divas and muses from bygone eras. Rich in symbolic detail, these nostalgic montages have been artfully crafted from French vintage postcards and sepia family photographs, embellished with delicate flowers and lace. This exquisite gift set includes an 80-page guidebook filled with evocative insights and timeless feminine wisdom, as well as five custom card spreads.”


The cards present such concepts as Abundance, Gratitude, Perception, Surrender, and Wisdom. Keywords are centered at the bottom of the cards in black, in a feminine, easy-to-read script.

The unillustrated guidebook begins with a long Introduction in which Victoria Moseley explains how the idea of creating this deck began to take shape when she was looking at postcards in a shop window. The guidebook presents each card in three or four paragraphs of text, and the entries are arranged alphabetically, beginning with Abundance and ending with Wisdom. The text is beautifully written in prose rich with imagery and depth of meaning.

The guidebook also contains five unique spreads: the Four-Leaf Clover Spread, the Spyglass Spread, the Penny Farthing Spread, the Walled Garden Spread, and the Chatelaine Spread.


The 52 high-quality cards in this deck measure 3.75 by 5.5 inches. They are packaged in a sturdy cardboard lift-top box. The matte finish has a silky feel. Too large to be shuffled like a standard card deck (Tarot or playing card), they require a slower, more deliberate process that is very much in keeping with the quiet, feminine images.

Borders on the front of the cards vary in color from gray to brown to purple. Each image is set against a scrolled ivory background that is primarily visible at the bottom, behind the card titles.

Card backs feature a marvelous close-up of a woman’s face in the center, surrounded by curls and swirls, with flowers and a moth. The rest of the card back is brown with an ornate golden ivory design.


After acquiring the postcards she admired in the shop, Moseley “began experimenting with the images and creating montages using my own watercolor paintings, pressed wildflowers from our local meadow, bits of old lace and embroidery, as well as contemporary digital elements from fellow crafters.” She also included elements from historic painters such as John Waterhouse and Van Gogh. The result is a series of gentle images with an antique Victorian style. Each image contains layers of symbolism that are well worth exploration through meditation.

In accordance with the FTC Guidelines for blogging and endorsements, I hereby disclose that this product was provided by the publisher for free. Other than the occasional review copy, I receive no monetary or in-kind compensation for my reviews.  The substance of my reviews is not influenced by whether I do or do not receive a review copy.

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~ Zanna