Deck Production: About the Gilding (Gold Edging)

Pictured: 2019 Vitruvian Edition box and gilding with forthcoming 2021 Book of Maps

While all of us are waiting on production, I thought I’d take this time to talk about gilding, and why I decided to once again go with gold edging for the third edition. The Revelation Edition decks will have the same gilding applied that both the First and the Vitruvian editions had.

Pictured: 2019 Vitruvian Edition box and gilding with forthcoming 2021 Book of Maps

Y’all… I do have my ear to the ground of the tarot community and I almost always agree with the general circulating sentiments du jour. Gilding is a controversial matter (said lightly, tongue in cheek of course). It irks some people, and I get it. When it’s that crusty, glittery gilding that’s coarse, I totes agree. Bleh.

But when it’s smooth and silky…

Here’s a close-up of what the gilding will look like when brand new. You’re looking at one of my open Vitruvian decks for replacement cards in the event of design production or printing errors, so the stack/thickness you see is a little less than the full 80 cards. Also, it’s what the gilding looks like brand new, fresh out of the box, unused.

And above is my personal workhorse deck, full 80 cards. Wait, maybe there’s only 78 in that stack and the 2 extra Key 0s are off to the side somewhere– can’t recall. Anyway, that’s besides the point. See how the gilding ages? I used this workhorse deck almost every single day, did countless pro readings with it, and before quarantine, had the public handle it when doing in-person readings. This aged look is after 2 years of natural, daily wear-and-tear.

How the gold edging ages is precisely why I opted to go with the gilding once again for this third edition. I had really thought about it, debating whether to go for no gilding at all, or opt for one of the trendier matte edging options, but it’s because of how the gold ages after natural wear-and-tear that I’ve decided to stick with it.

Gilding, when brand new

Brand new out of the box, the gold edging is shiny, but with an evenly-coated sheen, and not like glittery-gold or sparkly-gold. It’s quite elegant (I think). And yet how it ages… oh… (smiles with delight)…

After two years of loving use, the shininess fades to an antique matte. And I really like how it looks. It matches the vibes of the SKT. I like that it looks worn, like it’s got some experience under its belt.

Trying to see how close up my camera phone will let me zoom before it goes blurry. The top deck is my workhorse deck, the one that’s been used and worn in for the last two years. The bottom deck is one of the excess decks I had opened for sending out replacement cards from the 2019 orders. Which means it hasn’t been used for readings at all (and also why the stack looks a little thinner than the full workhorse one).

Gilding, aged and worn after 2 years of everyday use

Although I personally like how the gilding looks brand new, fresh out of the box, I love so much more how it ages over the years. It goes matte after use, and takes on this antique gold look.

In other news, the physically printed sample has been shipped and according to its tracking info, won’t arrive here until May 10. So there’s nothing for me to do but to continue line-editing the Book of Maps and wait for the printed samples to arrive.

I really hope I remember to type out some general care instructions in my delivery e-mail. Aforesaid care instructions don’t just apply to this deck, but to all decks in general. It’s a summation of everything I’ve learned from handling the cards through the decades. Like yeah, don’t leave the cards out under direct sunlight for days or on a desktop that’s near a window. It warps the cardstock for some reason. And I learned, just like violin care, you’ve got to be really considerate about deck handling depending on the humidity and the weather. Nuts, huh?

Anyway, this post was just to give you a sense of what to expect from the gilding for the SKT: Revelation Edition. =P

4 thoughts on “Deck Production: About the Gilding (Gold Edging)

  1. Stuart Shrigley-Wightman

    I think it definitely works especially with the vibe of the deck, what I know of it and the antique look caused by wisdom gained through work. Wow

    Liked by 1 person

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