Tarot de St. Croix

Review by Diane Wilkes


Tarot de St. Croix by Lisa de St. Croix

Self-published and available on the creator’s website, www.lisadestroix.com

Retail: $44.00 USD 

Orange. The first word you think of with the Tarot de St. Croix is orange—orange box, (partially) orange backs, orange borders. It’s not that there’s too much orange—just that there has always been a dearth of orange in tarot—until now.

Temperance e

I don’t think it’s a coincidence that this deck radiates the color of the second chakra—it’s a sensual, not-quite-erotic deck. You can use it in public;  there’s nothing obscene about it (unless you consider the naked body obscene), but there’s an undercurrent of robust sexuality in the beautiful paintings that make up this accessible, lush tarot deck. 


Take the Temperance card—it shows a bare-breasted woman combining goblet-filled liquids over a blazing cauldron. An angel stands at her back, his halo a large gleaming disc that could do double duty as a sombrero. He is bare-chested and one wonders what magic this couple could make together, in addition to the alchemy she creates over the fire. There is nothing of the salacious or self-conscious sexual preening you see in some decks. It’s so holistic. And wonderful. And hot, but in a holistic and wonderful way.

Typically, Temperance is not a warm card. But the sensual nature does not take anything away from its spirituality. That’s a lovely thing.


The majority of cards are not sexual, but they are all warm. Part of that is the orange. But there’s also a comfort to this deck, a warming that one could get from a cozy fireplace (or the sun in Santa Fe, from whence de St. Croix hails). This coziness might be traced back to the personal nature of the cards—each is based on a specific thing, memory, or person (or specific people) from de St. Croix’s life. 

Seven of Cups e

Look, there’s the sacred clown, Koshare, who once convinced the creatrix to purchase a plastic turquoise necklace. The charioteer might look like a god, but he’s a (former?) lover who is an archer and an artist—and Lisa is the sphinx, providing balance. The Wheel is a sunflower encircled by a mermaid and an angel, two guides who aid her expand after a shattering experience. And I’d have recognized Carrie Paris even without attribution in the Judgement card, bathed in a sibyl’s light at the Sienna Duomo.


And talk about cozy! The Seven of Cups shows tea-constituted pictures in seven blue mugs. Several images are based on de Croix’s family members. However, even families aren’t always comfortable—the Five of Swords depicts a child at the center of his parents’ hostilities. It’s an intimate, powerful card that provides the requisite discomfort. However, a Native American, Southwestern influence permeates many of the cards, so while it’s snowing in the Five of Pentacles, it still feels warm. 

Card Back

The Tarot de St. Croix artwork—all based on magnificent paintings by de St. Croix—is similar enough to the Ryder-Waite-Smith iconography that anyone who knows that deck will be able to read (and read well) with this one with no real learning curve. The mysterious, slightly ominous backs are reversible and the deck comes with a healthy booklet (I can’t use the term LWB, because this one has an orange (!) book cover). Majors are given more detail, but each card is described sufficiently. I would have preferred more card-specific interpretation and fewer personal anecdotes (if space was the issue), but that is a very minor quibble. 

This is a vibrant, accessible deck that will add blazing color to your collection. If you are a collector, you can do no better than a deck with 78 original, beautiful paintings—so refreshing in a world filled with computer art(ifice). If you are a reader, you will find these cards are profound and wonderfully readable. Orange is better than the new black when it comes to the St. Croix Tarot. 

All submissions remain the property of their respective authors. All images are used with permission. Tarot Reflections is published by the American Tarot Association - © 2014 Questions? Comments? Contact us at ATAsTarotReflections@gmail.com