How to Shuffle Tarot Card teaches you how shuffle regular, large and odd-shaped tarot decks. Also includes thoughts about jumping cards and trimming a deck of tarot cards.

Imagine this scene: Your pre-ordered Tarot deck arrives and you are eager to take your cards home. They won’t fit you unless you do. Damn. It’s a loss of joy. They can be too big for your hands, and if you try to move them around, they fly all over the place! What are you supposed to do? How do you shuffle these large or oddly shaped cards?

Let’s take a look at what options you have.


This article assumes that you are right-handed. If you’re left-handed, please make any necessary adjustments.

Experienced tarot and oracle card readers will know their preferred way of shuffling cards. After trying many different methods, they will settle on one or two. These methods are applicable to regular-sized cards.

The Overhand Shuffle

The Half Cut

Triple Cut

The Fan

Linear Draw

The Mix Up

The Riffle – The One to Avoid


tarot card shuffle overhand

Image Attribution: Essie. CC-by-SA3.0

Depending on your hand size and the dimensions of the deck, you can hold it vertically or horizontally. Next, hold the front half with your left hand and then lift the rear part of the deck up with your right.

You can do this once per round, or multiple times. Each time you overlap the back cards and front cards, you move a smaller amount of cards. This overlap can be done several times per shuffle for a more thorough shuffle.

It doesn’t matter how many times you do multiple shuffles, but it is up to you. As with many other things in life the more the merrier. Keep in mind that the more you use your Tarot cards, the more wear will begin to occur. Care for Your Tarot Cards offers tried-and-true methods to counter this.

It is up to how many times you do multiple shuffles. However, as with many other things in life the more the merrier. #tarotCLICK HERE TO TWEET


This is just as important as the shuffle. How do you know when to stop shuffle and begin dealing the cards for your tarot card reading?

I tend to keep going with an overhand shuffle until I feel ready or prompted.


There are two camps to this situation: either you revere the jumping cards or you just shuffle on.

I am in the former group. Every jumping tarot card I have seen fly out of any of my tarot cards has always been spot on and makes me pause to consider their accuracy and relevance.

If I decide to do a large reading of the tarot, such as the Celtic Cross, and one or two cards jump out while I am shuffling, I immediately assess them to see if my question is answered without having to go back to a larger reading. They should answer my question if they do. If they don’t, I will put them aside and continue the shuffling. Then, I will use them as additional information during or after the reading. This technique can be used with any tarot spread.

If you have a large tarot deck or a unique shape, such as the Motherpeace Tarot, you might want to ‘cut’ the deck in addition to the overhand Shuffle or as a separate method. The Pile Shuffle is also known as the Half Cut or the Triple Cut. There are two main ways you can do this.


tarot card shuffle double cut

Tarot deck: Aleister Crowley Thoth Tarot (large format) published by US Games Inc

The Half Cut pile shuffle can be explained in a few words: Take the stack and take out the top half. Next, place the other half on the side. Finally, add the rest to the pile. The result is a single stack, but it effectively splits the cards. The half-cut can be done as many times as necessary and you don’t need to be exact about the size of each half that you take from your stack. The ‘half’ can be any number of cards, from one card to 77. You can do whatever you are drawn to.


Triple cut tarot deck shuffle

Tarot deck: Aleister Crowley Thoth Tarot (large format) published by US Games Inc

Triple Cut pile shuffle is similar to the Half Cut, except that instead of splitting the deck into two piles you divide them into three. Take a few cards from the top of your deck and place them on one side of the stack. Next, take another section of the deck and place it on the opposite side. Now you will have three piles. The deck can be reassembled by simply placing the three piles together. However, you should not put them in the same order as when you cut it.

You can easily ensure that you have split the deck by simply placing the cuts side-by-side and restacking them by placing the last pile on top and the middle pile on the top.


The Sun and Moon Tarot by Vanessa Decort can help you mix up your deck into an order that is random if your deck is too large or your card stock is thick. This method is described in How to Get Great Tarot readings straight away. You can make a new or re-ordered tarot deck by randomly creating many smaller piles, shuffling them, and then bringing them all together one at a time.

If all of that seems like too much work or a bit too technical, there are some other non-shuffling methods to help you draw your individual tarot card for your tarot reading. These are the Corgi Shuffle, Linear Draw, and Fan.