Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Free mini oracle readings this February

All through February you can get a complimentary 2 card Lenormand reading with the purchase of anything that isn't a tarot reading.
Just send your question/general concern as a note when checking out.  Include your preference of email or etsy convo.

I've used them a while for myself and want to test drive it for others.

More information on the Lenormand:
Lenormand Oracle cards: Wordpress blog on meanings, layouts and the cards in action
Sylvie Steinbach, author of Secrets of the Lenormand Oracle
Seaqueen cartomancy blog:  Lenormand and tarot cards, spreads, lots of reading play by plays
Idyll's Lenormand blog: Updated daily

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Featured Artist: Crooked Thorne

Welcome Sarah Crooks- metalworker and acid etcher behind CrookedThorne.
And YES to the gemstone rings!  We need to see more in your shop.

CrookedThorne blog
CrookedThorne Facebook

Victorian Monogram necklace

"I love making jewelry and that is the one thing that always remains constant for me, I may stop drawing or painting for awhile, but I am always making jewelry!"

Tell us about yourself 
"I graduated from Laguna College of Art & Design with a BFA in Illustration/Fine Art and a minor in Graphic Design. I am also a Certified Bench Jeweler from American Jeweler's Institute.  By day I am the head Graphic Artist for L*Space Swimwear, and I love my job!  I am constantly being inspired by the prints we use in our suits and the color combinations that are used. "
Death Tarot Card cuff

"Metal-smithing is something that is relaxing and challenging at the same time. I feel like I'm constantly problem solving so it's challenging but then there are  those times where I will spend two hours filing a piece of metal to perfection."  

I enjoy the act of creating, so I melt, pour, and roll out my own metal.  I set my own stones, and I design all my marketing materials, logos, web site, ect.  I'm not a control freak, but I look at Crooked Thorne as my ultimate art project and so I like to do as much of it myself as I possibly can. My line has a dark gypsy theme and I specialize in acid etching tarot cards onto sterling silver.  It's a challenge because each one turns out differently but that is part of the fun!

Do you offer anything besides product?

I love doing custom design work, so if someone has a special request I love to work with them and create something unique and special.

What have you learned as a seller?

Men's Devil tarot card cuff
I think that as organized as possible is the best tip I could recommend.  And having a system for keeping all your paperwork in order makes dealing with the year-end duties much easier and manageable.

Also, just networking with other artists and picking their brains never hurts either ;)

Any plans for the coming year?

This year I would like to work on a new line of rings which will have precious and semi-precious stones.  I would also like to grow my shop and focus on getting Crooked Thorne out there a little more with my website www.crookedthorne.com!

What is inspiring you right now?

Right now I'm being inspired by a lot of patterns that I'm seeing in the swim industry.  I've always had a love for Native American and Mexican jewelry so seeing all these Aztec inspired patterns is pretty exciting. As for a song...I'm going to have to go with anything from Black Rebel Motorcycle Club as they are constantly playing in my studio.

*I'm running out of people to blog about! I hunt them down as fast as possible but can't always find the best matches for this site.  If you have someone in mind, a favorite shop, or you yourself want to be featured send me a line on Facebook or Etsy.

Sunday, January 8, 2012

Favorite Sites and Listening Party: Hustle, Diego's Umbrella, robot Morgan Freeman and more

I've racked up more good finds to share with you.

The Art of Hustle
I'm out of full time work but I'm an artist.  These two maxims had me feeling pretty discouraged but a visit has got me thinking.  Especially the "print your own money" bit.  A concept has been floating around the empty space in my brain that might be good for this.

Spirit Portrait. oil
Have a Facebook fanpage?  Customize your own link for people to click on with whatever you want.
They're easy to build.  Mine's a mini newsletter.  People see my newest blog posts, can tell exactly what I offer, and can fan for a special coupon.  It's worked for me.

Listen Here

Best thing on tv.  Aside from Metalocalypse.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Tarot Deck Review: The Bohemian Gothic

This was my 1st impression of this deck, published in March of 2009.
Since then it's come to call when I need to see what's running under the surface of things. 

As of this posting, both the 1st and 2nd editions of this deck are now out of print!
The website says they hope to being a 3rd edition in 2013.  

So if you find a copy worth less than your kidney, you're in luck!

This is my most recent deck. I ordered it last summer and haven't had the chance to really get into it, but like my current favorites it'll probably grow on me after a while. Here's what I've gotten from it so far.

Compared to the Victorian Romantic (whose artwork put me off at first because they differ so much from card to card), the BG is borderless and the scenes expansive. They feel real and the lighting, coloring and styles are pretty consistent. You can feel night coming on in the bluish tinge of dusk on many of the cards.

That realness is from photographs- some with the handtinted look of antique portraits. Like the pair of little children on the 6 of Cups, holding flowers and standing in front of a grave. Who's? The framed picture on the grave's cross features the Virgin Mary and infant Jesus- probably their mother. A charming vignette.

It's easy to go deeper or psychological with these to see what currents run underneath the reading. But some can be inspiring or just fill you with lunatic giddiness- I thought of my business's name by drawing some cards.

My favorite cards will illustrate the macabre and oddly humorous feel of this deck:

The Queen of Wands } Striking- her bright rose colored gown pops out from the gloomy ballroom. The large room with the chandelier reminds me of the Crystal Room at college, where we had concerts and gatherings. She looks like she's having fun dancing alone. 

The 7 of Cups woman has an indulgent, mischievous grin on her face- holds a beautiful glass of red "wine" and strands of dark pearls and gazes up at the full moon.

The 4 of Wands. Three women hang out in their yard at night and look very happy to see you. Almost too happy. Hey, I like going for walks at night, too.

The 2 of Cups } Like a scene from the Munsters- a nice distant cousin is courting the "normal" one. What with his slicked back hair and shiny button up boots, he's a catch. 

And the Knight of Wands just reminds me of the hunchbacked cousin from Adams Family Values- the one Wednesday has to dance with. The old formal getup, creepy gaze and red bouffant must do it. 

Much of this deck is RWS based, but all offer other ways of going in completely different directions. Through the imagery and overall feel, you'll have many opportunities to see things you wouldn't in any other deck. Like a horrified skeletal man who may have just realized he's entombed in a catacomb. Oops.

I highly suggest getting the kit. You will not find shoddy history or a plain old celtic cross layout in this book. Written by Karen Mahony, it goes over tarot's origins and the basics of reading but adds so much more. There are upright and reversed meanings, detailed image explanations, snippets from literature, poetry, original photographs used, sample readings and an essay by Dan Pelletier (of tarotgarden) on "dark" decks. A huge collection of useful reading for this deck and to expand your knowledge of tarot.

Further Reading

See card images, tarot bags and stay up to date on new editions at the Bohemian Gothic's own site. 

Read reviews of the Bohemian Gothic tarot from tarot readers on Aeclectic Tarot Forum.

Browse the Bohemian Gothic tarot on Amazon

Sunday, January 1, 2012

The Tarot Spotter's Handbook: The Cups

**Work in Progress**


when describing an area of concern, this brings up direct relationships
new flowing of creativity or breath of fresh air to something that's been stale

Russian Tarot of St Petersburg

care for something and you will be cared for in return; this can
be another person, an area of your life or specific project

something may be lacking your attention, where can you best
spend it now?







enjoyment in groups, the people are all on a level playing field

three people are involved in a situation
something to celebrate!


focusing on the negative
being surrounded by good things but not being able to see them
showing up in the future- it may show negative preoccupation or a great opportunity; keep your eyes open!


negative attitude, dissatisfaction
a bit gloomier than the 4 of cups, because the cups here *are* overturned and spilled all over the place
you may actually be going through a tough time or recovering from a shock or setback; not all is lost and things will begin to look better


involvement with people you grew up with
sharing with others




dissatisfaction, something is missing
setting out to improve or right a situation alone


productivity; can show the fruits of a busy bee
comfort in surroundings
working with nature


even regarding business, this talks about joy; perfect job or career
highest fulfillment

The Court People

See each character as showing age, stature and movement in life.
Pages tend to stay around home or a job.  They're the messengers and novices.
Knights are older and have more freedom; someone with a car or who otherwise travels.  Either in general or specifically for a job.  Journeymen may describe them, as they are right above pages on the experience level but have the freedom to apply their knowledge in a broader sense.
Queens, not always women, are creators in their realm.  They don't *need* to run themselves all over the place to make a buck.  They're blessed to have what they need right there and the skills at hand.  I've seen queens come up for self employed females and those with strong influence in a situation.  Men also, who showed skill and a great background in their field, who were looking to move up in their career.  
Kings.  The buck stops here.  The head, the authority, someone reaching the pinnacle of their path. 


a child or youth, pet, or someone in an entry level or starting role
very caring, tending to nuture others, just wants what is best and doesn't like to see others upset


a loving person; it seems our dear kitty has come up as the Knight and Page of cups before.  He had a sweet face, large green eyes and was a little snuggler.


a self employed artisan, small/home business owner
someone who puts a great deal of themselves in what they do
a situation best handled sensitively
handling things with tact, perhaps letting it go and seeing how it flows; aggression will make things worse


a loving person
can show a husband, lover or caregiver

The Tarot Spotter's Handbook: The Major Arcana



High Priestess








Wheel of Fortune


Hanged Man



see if there is an area you need to give more to, either because you've neglected it
or others are giving more than you
balancing, things returning to normal
take it easy, don't get worked up


situation/person/anything you need to dump or are bound to
something you do that you enjoy but doesn't amount to much (playing computer games)

Falling Tower

complete, many times sudden, change or collapse


stars were/are used as guidance; hope


timing- waiting for a change, perhaps leaving it up to outside circumstances
actions or plans not gaining much progress



authority figures; reviews
waiting for judgement to be passed; people's impressions


expansion: getting something out into the world, farther than you've done before; presenting to an audience
experiencing new things and places
progress, something you may not have considered will show up to help

The Tarot Spotter's Handbook: The Pentacles

All about the Pentacles in Tarot.


new direction, not always money related, but bringing something to chart your course by
a new job opportunity or way of earning money


attention to detail
trying out different ideas pertaining to business or money
exchanging money, gaining money and spending in the same day


others' perception of your work
practicing your craft especially in front of or working for others




generosity; seeing others, or being seen yourself, as worthy
investing; charity


time for results
satisfaction or a return on your work/investment



Pride in your work or surroundings
Comfortable, having a lot






mature person, someone in authority, head of finance
you may appear as the King after making sound financial decisions
maturing financial accounts

The Tarot Spotter's Handbook: The Wands


the hand is usually grasping this wand- a new project or path is underway, most of the time
decided by you


giving things direction
deciding between two viable options




action, not always productive
See all the things this poor lady has to clean?  
These objects are supposed to make your life easier, not take
up all your attention.  "Too many pans on the fire."








many times he shows house moves
physical legwork and movement
progress will pick up
can describe a male that appears exciting to others
high energy



The Tarot Spotter's Handbook: The Swords

**Work in Progress**
All about the Swords in Tarot.


because this suit deals with straight, no nonsense communication, you may need to open your mouth more



wondering what went wrong
getting out of your comfort zone vs being forced out or made to compromise
taking a risk




being extremely downtrodden or hard on yourself, not always


People of air suits; intellectuals; professionals especially in areas of law, business, medical, etc

Cutting through crap; space clearing; analyzing/decision making;

It's come up in readings for travel partners with a "gogogo" attitude.  Bags packed way ahead of time, plans made.


Also of interest...