What to Consider When You're Designing Your Deck of Cards

card decks

When designing your deck of cards, there are quite a few elements that you'll need to consider.  Some things to think about are:

What color scheme will you be using?

Sometimes the color scheme will come together once you decide what elements (art/pictures/graphics) you're going to use.  Let's say you're going to use photographs you've taken.  Once they are all together you may notice a certain color that stands outs.  Maybe you are drawn to a particular color that is in every picture.  This could be the color that you'll use to design your cards to keep everything cohesive.

What design do you want to have on the back of your cards?

For the back of your cards, what do you want to have on each card?  One design?  Text? Solid color?

What size of card do you want to have?

There's a whole lot of options out there to choose from.  There's two standard sizes, a tarot size card which is 2.75” x 4.75".  And the other popular size is 3.5 x 5.  

How many cards are in your deck?

When I start to create a new deck I don't know the number of cards that it will be until I gather my artwork and play around with it for a while.  Once I pick the drawings that I want in this deck, I'll count and see how many there are.  I've found that I settle on 52 - 54 cards for each deck. This is totally up to you how many you have.  

Are you using artwork, pictures, text or solid backgrounds?

There's a lot of creative ways to create your deck of cards.  You can use your own artwork, photography, solid colors, doodles, you name it and you can use it.  The most important thing here is - do you own the right to the items you're using?  You either need to create your own or pay for the elements.  This is important because if you don't do it right, you could end up in some legal trouble. 

Do you need or want to a guidebook? 

So now you need to decide if your deck warrants a guidebook or can the deck stand on its own.  Some decks may have enough information on the card that you don't need a guidebook and some decks may need additional guidance to go along with the cards.  Once you determine if you need a guidebook, the second decision will be is it a print guidebook or an electronic guidebook.

As you can see there's quite a few things to consider when you're designing your deck of cards. Once you start making decisions on these elements, you'll start to see your deck come to life.  

It might seem like creating a deck could be an overwhelming experience.  It definitely can be, however, it can be a fun and rewarding experience when you have someone guiding you along the way.  If you're ready to dive in, I have created a workshop called a Guide to Planning Your Deck of Cards.  You can find all the details here