This deck was in the works for years, and for years eagerly anticipated by dedicated Baba Studio fans, and Tarot enthusiasts in general. So what do we have?
One of the most exquisite decks ever created. It’s like nothing else out there. The artwork is all original, based on the books by Lewis Carroll, and designed along the lines of the Waite-Smith, but with completely original artwork. The Limited Edition deck was a limited print run of 500 decks, and is completely sold out as of about a week ago. The standard deck is still available, and while it has the same cold-foil stamping which lends a very subtle elegance to the already beautiful cards, it is a standard size and comes in a hinged lid box, which is itself wrapped in heavy, coated paper. Let’s look at the LE (Limited Edition) deck.
The box is lovely, fits the deck perfectly. The deck itself is held inside a dupioni silk bag, lined with a bronze colored silk. The deck is large, 6 3/8″ x 3 7/8″. I like how part of the images bleed off the border of the cards. The cold-stamped foil accents are light and subtle, you have to tilt the card to see it. Looking straight on you don’t notice it at all. As you can see, the cards are unnumbered.
The standard deck comes in this box, which is covered in a very heavy paper that is printed on all sides. Karen and Alex don’t miss any details.
I also sprang for the book, which is ordered separately, and I would encourage anyone who’s thinking about it, to go ahead and get it (if you can).
Both decks come with a LWB (little white book) that has traditional meanings, as well as slightly skewed “Alice” meanings. For instance, the High Priestess card speaks of the usual “Divine Feminine, seeking spirituality and enlightenment”, the “Alice” meanings include “A brush with death that makes you see life in a new way” and “Experiencing a magical transformation.” The Empress “Alice” meanings talk of a dysfunctional mother, and a chaotic insecure childhood. The Alice meanings are rather like reversed meanings in that respect.
It was a stretch for me to get both decks, but after seeing the LE in person now, I think I would have cried myself to sleep for years if I’d let it slip away. I’m sorry for those who were not able to get it, that it’s now sold out. It was not cheap, and we have to weigh our priorities. I’ll be circling the wagons for awhile after this little splurge, believe me.
It certainly helps if you’ve read the Alice books. I hear tell there’s a deluxe annotated edition coming out next year which I’ll be on the lookout for.
Also, there’s a Facebook Alice Tarot group for discussion of the deck, if you’re interested, even if you don’t have it (yet). If you’d like me to do a reading for you with this delicious deck, please get in touch. (see “Contact” at the top).