Your tarot boxes, altars, bookshelves and reading spaces


On Monday I shared a peek inside my tarot box.

Life has felt so heavy lately, on personal, local and global levels, and honestly? I just wanted to look at pretty things for a moment.

But that’s not to dismiss the significance of our sacred objects, our tarot decks, the spaces we create for tarot and ritual and magic. As the suit of pentacles teaches us, there is deep significance in the *stuff* of our lives. My tarot box is an expression of my developing tarot practice and taking those photos was not only an aesthetic indulgence, but an affirmation of my own practice.

Today, it’s your turn!

Thanks everyone who sent in photos of their altars, reading spaces, tarot boxes, bookshelves and more – it’s fun and inspiring to see your lovely magical objets, the cards, elements and ritual items you keep to hand, how you observe, how you create sacred space. The scenes in these photographs are expressions of who we are, who you are. Some of these are works of art, some are practical, some are colourful, others simple. Some take pride of place, others are snatched centimetres of precious space in small or busy homes. All are unique and feel incredibly special to see.

I truly enjoyed putting this post together and gaining a little peek into your lives and practices.



Here’s my messy “witchin’ table” 😉

This was/is my kitchen table that acts as my main altar and reading space. The blue circle is used for bone reading. I’ve got a squirrel skull and spirit as a friendly ally. All my other tools rotate seasonally. I love the practicality of it!

K Kriesel

tarot altar

Here is my Tarot bookshelf. My 8 decks in their bags are shown here.  The books are all the journals I use to write about each deck, one journal per deck.  Among the deer and cow bones, hag stone, my gramma’s atomizer,  are these decks: Morgan Greer, Sacred Rose, Shining Tribe, Motherpeace, Margarete Petersen, Cook’s Tarot, Thoth Tarot, Mother Mary Oracle Cards.



My altar—a red antique sewing table—has a variety of things on it: photos of loved ones; a photo I took at St. Roch’s Chapel; candles; lemons from our Meyer lemon tree; Oracle of Oddities cards; a ceramic hummingbird box. I declutter and cleanse it regularly. 



Here’s a short list of the items thereupon:

1. Tarot Deck | For daily draws. The one pictured here is the Linestrider Tarot.
2. Wand, Cup, Dagger, and Coins | Representations of the Minor Arcana.
3. Tree of Life | A hand-drawn Kabbalistic Tree of Life (under the deck). This is a different version of the Tree than the one most commonly used.
4. Candles | Dedicated to specific cards I’m working with. These are for the Emperor, Strength, and Temperance.
5. Sundry Souvenirs | Associated tchotchkes from various travels, which have personal significance to me for one reason or another.



Box of Tarot Magic; my decks, crystals, divination & protection oils, and guidebooks. (I don’t have too many tarot decks because I can still fit them in this basket! *nods*)


Reading space featuring the Black Angel Cards, one of my journals, and crystal ally witnesses.


This used to be my tarot reading tray but it was err… requisitioned for other use; it’s now her favorite napping spot.


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I have two altars, one where I meditate and one which is more my working alter. They changes around as I play with crystals seeds sticks, feathers.

I wanted to share this one which I set up after finding a beautiful young fox, dead at the side of the road . I wanted to honour its life and journey into spirit. I asked my oracle deck (“a wee star”oracle) for a card to support them on their journey and I think I got that. I like to use the gateway of two magpie feathers held in silver birch stands to hold my intention.



Atop a bookshelf which stands over six feet tall in my room, sits this wee bit of sacred space.  My five-year-old daughter, though I share these beautiful items with her often, is the reason they are set so high.

In this picture is an owl purchased for me by my 21-year-old, a selenite skyscraper, a lepidolite worry stone, an Aventurine heart, an amethyst angel, a piece of Amazonite, an unpolished piece of Chrysocolla, an Aqua Aura, several single terminated crystals, tumbled bloodstone, tumbled amethyst, a rose quartz sphere, pink sapphire, a quartz pendulum, Russian Amazonite, several Pi stones (Aventurine, coral, and crazy lace agate), several seashells, and a family grouping of clear Quartz.

There is also a tiny selenite wand and an amethyst cluster (not pictured). This is one of many beautiful spaces in my home, made beautiful not necessarily because of esthetics but because I value the inhabitants.  🙂



This is an altar I created in May 2016 to celebrate the arrival of my advance reading copies of my first published novel, Two Natures (Saddle Road Press, Sept. 2016).


Cards from the “Book of Shadows: So Below” Tarot deck that I use for novel plotting (Knights of Pentacles and Chalices represent the male couple in my book, 10 of Swords and 8 of Chalices are my writing process)
Virgin Mary and Jesus icons
Photo of Peggy Olson from “Mad Men”, my feminist success avatar
Mini cauldron
Chiming balls (because it takes balls to be a writer!)
Lammily doll in men’s clothes
Oven mitt that looks like my novel protagonist
Oven mitt with his name on it (“Julian”)
Drawing that looks like his boyfriend dressed as Superman



Here’s the simple altar I use now, due to pets and lack of space (I live on a boat). I have all four elements, with whatever I’m working with (here tarot cards and mugwort tea) in the centre. I have a wee cauldron of water for water, a giant ass crystal for earth, a bell for air and a candle for fire. It changes slightly depending on season, etc, but tend to incorporate the same elemental symbols.


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I almost didn’t send this. Too boring. Not enough crystals. But this is my space.

A desk I bought off a neighbor for $20. My most-used decks + my current working tarot notebook in a set of hanging pockets on my wall (The Wildwood, Mary-el, and the Centennial RWS), a mish-mash of books ranging from tarot to art to entrepreneurship, a stack of journals dating back to high school, old mason jars with art & writing supplies. I don’t keep tarot separate: it mixes and mingles with the rest of my life and my other passions. If the Muse doesn’t feel like gracing me with her presence when I show up to my desk, I can simply pull a card. Someone’s gotta do the work! 






I know you all want to peek at this collection – click the picture to view full-size!

Twentyish years of collecting has left me with an unwieldy but cherished pile of decks. Snapped this first pic in the spring to show my Daily Guidance peeps….. and let some friends loose in the main tarot trunk 😉


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  1. Erica says:

    This was so wonderful – what a variety! It makes me feel so good about my own space, and my quest to make it meaningful and, above all, my own.

  2. sybes1 says:

    These are AMAZING and diverse altars! I’m so impressed!! My stuff sits on one of my two art desks–not very aesthetic but it’s what I have. Also: very impressed with Susannah’s collection of decks! My friends Steven Bright and Cat Dubh *might* have even more….!!
    Thank you everyone for sharing! Sally

  3. Well this was simply beautiful!

    Most of my things had been wrapped and tucked away to stay safe while we were fishing (I live on a boat), or I would’ve contributed. Since I’m going to be docked for at least the next month, I just set up the galley table as an altar space this morning. I’m really hoping the meows, er, respect it.

  4. lindsay says:

    I got inspired and just created my first tarot nook! I grabbed a little table from outside, a chair I never use, and staked out a corner in my room. I didn’t think I had space for it and have been making excuses, but I’m so happy I carved out a corner of my own. My partner said, “It’s getting spiritual in here.” I take that as a good sign. Thank you!

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