‘The Stretch Tarot’ is a mixed-media tarot deck by first-time creator, J.E. Stretch. Featuring rich, collaged artwork and vintage imagery altered using a wide variety of methods and mediums, the unique style of ‘The Stretch Tarot’ is designed to help both new and experienced readers see the cards in a different perspective, illuminating traditional meanings in a new light.
Following the conventional structure of the tarot, teachings and symbolism from the masters are brought together in a new aesthetic which is at once fresh and familiar. ‘The Stretch Tarot’ includes the full cast of tarot archetypes in a complete set of 78 cards, with a fully illustrated Major and Minor Arcana. Both artistic and practical, the deck is intended to aid in interpretation, enabling you to explore, celebrate, understand and foresee the details of our human experience.
In response to feedback, ‘The Stretch Tarot’ evolved into a diverse deck, working to including people of colour and remove the traditional boundaries of gender, specifically in the court cards. Despite their ‘vintage’ appearance, the cards are designed to combine the old and new in a way that reflects the modern reader and our current world. The tarot has endured for centuries due to its ability to adapt to circumstance and context; ‘The Stretch Tarot’ is no exception to this.
The history of the tarot is shrouded in as much mystery as the symbolism of the cards themselves holds to the layman. Yet we all share the same image - a Victorian fortune-teller, fanning the cards in the low, orange haze of gas lamps and candlelight in a dingy parlour. In ‘The Stretch Tarot’, this stereotype is embraced and heightened through the use of public domain, 19th-20th century photography and illustrations - bringing you the ‘authentic’ atmosphere of the tarot and making this mystic fantasy an exciting reality.
I discovered the tarot when I was about 13 years old, my first deck being a second-hand copy of the Rider-Waite-Smith brought from Ebay (which to this day is my favourite deck). I have always been a creative person, studying art and photography at school but never on a serious level. However, this creative streak manifests in the need to give back to the things I am most interested in. Making a tarot deck of my own was something I found appealing since I first held a deck in my hands, and it was an idea I toyed with for a few years. Never intending for it to be for anything other than my own enjoyment and use, I set out making cards and posting them on Tumblr. ‘The Stretch Tarot’ gained a following, and I realised that I was actually making the tarot deck I had fantasised about.
Nearly two years in the making, the artwork is now complete and ready to be self-published. I am thrilled to be at this stage and am thankful to everyone who has watched the project grow and bloom.
‘The Stretch Tarot’ is near total completion save the final card backs and additional material. It is time to get the deck mass printed and on offer to you!
The new target of £3,000 covers the cost to print the first run of 100 copies of the deck, in addition to packaging, subsidised postage, and the materials needed to create the campaign’s rewards. No profit is included in this figure; all of the money will go into production and giving back to you who have pledged and made the final result a reality.
The previous attempt at funding here on Kickstarter reached 63% of a very ambitious goal, so I am very thankful for all of those who backed the campaign and had confidence in its success. This time around, I am focusing on a much smaller and more manageable production and hope that the project continues to receive as much positive feedback and support.
'If at first you don't succeed, try, try, try again.'
What's in it for you? Well, there are a number of interesting rewards available (most limited only to this campaign) giving you greater incentive to help the funding. There are one-of-a-kind, handmade items up for grabs for those pledging higher amounts, and even exciting rewards for the smaller pledges – any donation will be highly respected and received with gratitude. There are a few reward bundles to choose from, and there’s something to suit everyone’s budget, listed below.
A thank you page will be set up on ‘The Stretch Tarot’ website, and your name will be listed among those who have pledged. Even small rewards are very helpful, so this is my way of acknowledging your contribution!
The first physical reward on offer are these simple, handmade bookmarks. Measuring 7 x 12 cm and featuring artwork from the deck, these lovely bookmarks are another way in which you can enjoy the art of 'The Stretch Tarot'.
The eight designs on offer are:
- The High Priestess
- The Lovers
- The World
- II of Cups
- Page of Cups
- Knight of Cups
- Queen of Wands
To take a look at each of the designs, click here!
These high-quality prints feature one of my personal favorite and best received cards, the 10 of Pentacles. A great way to celebrate the publication of the deck, this limited A6 print will look beautiful on display and will only be available to those who pledge to this campaign, signed by the artist.
These playing cards have been exclusively designed as a reward for the relaunch of this campaign, and showcase the most beautiful and striking images used in 'The Stretch Tarot', as well as images considered for use in the tarot deck.
As a part of the process in creating the tarot cards, I had to search through hundreds of public domain images in order to find ones that carried the meaning and style I wanted the cards to have. In doing so, I came across a number of wonderful photographs and illustrations, now put to use in these new cards.
Celebrating both these images and 'The Stretch Tarot', these high-quality playing cards are suitable for both games and divination, as they largely follow the structure of the tarot's minor arcana.
The aces are digitally altered illustrations, designed exclusively for this deck.
The Stretch Tarot
With a pledge of £25 (plus additional postage outside the UK), you are essentially pre-ordering your own copy of the deck. You will be among the first people to receive ‘The Stretch Tarot’ shortly before it goes on sale, making this a perfect opportunity for those interested in owning a copy to finally get one!
These A6, spiral-bound notebooks are hand-decorated with unique artwork, each in the style of ‘The Stretch Tarot’. Where else would be a more perfect place to journal about your journey with the deck, invent new spreads, or record your readings?
A wonderful addition to the deck are these handmade deck pouches! There are two designs available, the first featuring yellow/gold outside with a navy cotton lining, the second a reversal of this combination. The pouches will be kindly handmade by my mum!
With this very special reward, your package will come nestled in a beautiful, one-of-a-kind, hand decorated pine box, featuring artwork in the style of ‘The Stretch Tarot’ and showcasing images considered for use in the deck.
Flecked with 100% gold leaf details and finished with an antique crackle, the boxes suit the deck brilliantly yet stand as an art piece on their own. Large enough to fit the deck comfortably, these boxes would be perfect to store additional metaphysical items such as smaller card decks, incense, tea-lights, crystals and stones; a great home for ‘The Stretch Tarot’ and a huge thank you for the immeasurable contribution you'll have made.
The boxes measure W 9.5 cm, H 5.5 cm, L 18 cm.
The final reward on offer is this wonderful spread cloth. Also handmade by my mum, this navy, velveteen cloth is finished with beautiful gold trim, makes a perfect place to spread the cards and adds a luxurious quality to your reading experience. Measures approximately 45 x 60 cm. Again, a huge thank you for the immeasurable contribution you'll have made!
Please note that I am also happy to customise reward tiers upon request, so do not hesitate to send me a message if you would like to do so!
Risks and challenges
All possible precautions have been taken in order to avoid foreseeable risks in completing the project.
The deck is complete and ready to be printed, so there are no deadlines to be missed in that regard. Test printings have already been carried out and a printer decided upon, so, once again, there should be no issues or challenges in the printing.
For the production of the rewards, sufficient time has been left until the delivery date, so once again deadlines should not be missed. If, of course, there are unfortunately any issues then this would be made public and adjustments made to the dates if need be.
Please note that the style of the notebooks and boxes may vary.
Although I will attempt to keep them the same, fabrics and ribbons may also vary.
The worst possible outcome would be a failure to fund this campaign, in which case an alternative method of funding would be worked out and 'The Stretch Tarot' will still be self-published.
I hope you will help to avoid this outcome, and see that this new campaign is a success!Learn about accountability on Kickstarter
- (30 days)