Cartomancy- preferred method?


I have been attempting to learn how to read playing cards, and have ran across a couple of different ways to look at each card and I am just not sure! Is there a difference between hedgewytchery and cartomancy?
Any of you out there practice cartomancy? How did you learn the meanings? :)


Dear gypsylady,
playing cards are my favorite deck! I'm really passionate about them.
I use two methods to read playing cards:

1.Regina Russell's handbook
2.A greek method that I was taught

Both are very accurate and detailed! I am aware of other systems,too. As far as I am concerned there are:
1.the French method (32 reduced deck)
2.the Russian method (36 reduced deck)
3.various methods that use the whole deck of 52 cards(regina russell, leo louis martello, my "own" method, Hedgewytchery etc.).
4.the Playing card Oracle by Ana cortez
5.Others use the Jokers,too.

To my experience,it's a very complicated deck (even more complicated than any Tarot).
But it's amazing what you can get from a reading!


I have just started (less than 2 days ago!) to learn to read with playing cards and already I LOVE it, more than tarot which I have been doing for ages. So far I have used a few online sources:

mainly so far I used Phoenix Rising's meanings lightly pencilled onto an ordinary deck and have already found the system much simpler and more accurate than tarot (although I think knowledge of tarot helps, for me at least). As I practice already I am seeing how to modify or expand the meanings of the cards. I have just ordered some books from Amazon and some nice new cards and am all set to learn more and more... the book on sacred texts (third link in the above list) includes fairly extensive descriptions of various methods and is probably worth a look, if you haven't already seen it... sorry not to be more helpful but I hope to know more very soon (when my books arrive)! :)


Hi there!
Thank you for this :) I have been looking at the Hedgewytchery method for quite some time, but it's always nice to know what people are using, you know?
You have me super interested in finding out more now with all the enthusiasm you show!!! I did check out the sites you pointed me towards!
Thanks for your feedback on this :)


My recent interest in Lenormand has also made me become more interested in playing card reading. This may be next on my list! :D


I don't know anything about Lenormand yet, so that will be next on *my* list!

I saw just one thing on Hedgewychery, from this source posted by Little Hare on another thread, but I couldn't see where the rest of the information was for the 'witch of medium memory'!!

Is there more than this online? I liked this stuff but the 'red good black bad' doesn't quite feel intuitively right to me so I don't know. Well actually it feels *intuitively* right, as in the colours work that way in my psyche, but since clubs are associated with fire, well their being black in the first place doesn't feel quite right! But clubs as fire don't feel 'bad' to me so that's my sticking point with what little I've seen of the hedgewitchery method but maybe that's not so important. Or am I missing the point of hedgewitchery?! I'd be very interested to know more... :D

Yes, I am super enthusiastic about it, especially because I've always just really liked playing cards and for some reason I assumed learning to read with them would be more difficult than the tarot. Although I like reading with the full 'ordinary' deck and with no reversals (although I do use reversals with tarot) I will look at cutting down a deck to 32 cards and using them with reversals and see how I get on with that. I really like having no majors, and no pictures, and just symbols and colours to work with - it feels really exciting! (Especially with all the amazing card decks you can get in so many colours...!!!!!!) I find the tarot imagery a bit 'too much' sometimes, and the playing cards seem to really get to the nub of the matter...


The Lenormand is one I really want to learn as well! I'm a little intimidated by it still though, so hoping to get past that soon :)

I printed off all the material for the Hedgewytchery method from the site you point out, WulzCat. I'm not sure what happened to the information for the medium memory though, I know I have it all printed off, and haven't been back on the site since!

I agree with you as far as the red=good, black= bad thing. Something doesn't feel quite right about it, because there are good cards that are black. I don't think you should look at the spread and go "Wow, lots of black cards- this is bad", you know? So that part I'm a little iffy on as well!

I find the playing cards harder to learn, personally! I'm not sure what it is, perhaps only because there are no pictures to go by, LOL. I'm very visual so I feel like it may be overwhelming, but then again, I am probably just scaring myself ;)


I find the playing cards harder to learn, personally! I'm not sure what it is, perhaps only because there are no pictures to go by, LOL. I'm very visual so I feel like it may be overwhelming, but then again, I am probably just scaring myself ;)

Out of curiosity, how are you learning? It might be that you're just scaring yourself... I just took the really basic meanings and wrote them on the cards (although so faintly i have to really peer to see them!!). I still have the tarot minors in my head too, so I kind of think of them too as i'm learning. I now also have basic hedgewitchery in my head too, just to complicate matters! (I found the stuff for the witch of middle memory, but haven't read it yet!) But i think best to keep it simple at first, because you just need to find a way that feels right to you before adding too many bells and whistles.

For example, I just did a little spread for myself asking: could i become a professional psychic medium? (in the future, i'm not ready yet!) and drew (am I allowed to say what cards I've drawn in a reading here, or does that infringe the board rules? if so i will edit, thanks mods) 8 spades, 8 hearts and 9 diamonds. With the 8 spades i'm recalling the bound woman in the tarot RWS 8 swords, and that makes sense; but the 8 hearts seems to really break out of my fear, and with 8s signifying power and growth etc, I sort of envisage my heart breaking out of all these barriers and really growing towards my future, towards the self-sufficiency of the 9 diamonds (like the 9 of pents). So the 8 hearts feels intuitively a bit different to the 8 of cups, and in any case I've got written on the card 'invitations, love letters, karmic connections' so none of that really felt intuitively right in this reading and I just went with how the 8 bursting hearts were making me feel as i looked at them.

But, the shadow card for this was the 3 of spades, and that's got me a bit confused. I mean,, it makes me think 3 of swords but that doesn't feel quite right... i've got written on the card 'affair, self-deception, lies' so what should I think? 3 is an increase, like empress, spades are worries, mental issues... that the basis of my question is my own self-cheating sorrow in not allowing myself to break free of artificially constructed barriers? That makes sense to me...

So yes, basically that is how I'm learning at the moment and I will look into other methods but I think the main thing is trying to stay simple to begin with, with small spreads and just trying to think as much as possible of the numbers and what they mean.

Even though I have my reservations about the red good black bad of hedgewitchery, in this reading the hedgewitchery stuff did also make sense, as in beginning with worries, then following my passion and then making a living from it.

Sorry if that was all a bit long-winded and unnecessary, but that is basically my method as the moment, a work in progress! If you ever want to do reading exchanges or my opinion on interps or anything else, let me know as I would quite like a study buddy/ies!! :)


Is there a difference between hedgewytchery and cartomancy?

In answer to this (bearing in my mind my "extensive" learning on this subject which amounts to about 2 days worth :D), as far as I can see cartomancy is the general name for reading playing cards, by any method... while hedgewitchery seems to be the name given to any marginal witchy practice, and the hedgewitchery method of reading cards is a traditionally handed down method as described in that link... but there must be a million variations...? (I would think.) I think it's supposed to be a more organic and instinctive form of card-reading, as suited to the hedge witch! (ie. the witch who lives on the margins, rooting about in hedges!)

Then there are all these other more or less elaborate forms of playing card-reading, with different rules, but all of them fall under the heading of cartomancy.

That's my understanding but am ready to stand corrected! :)


I just took the really basic meanings and wrote them on the cards (although so faintly i have to really peer to see them!!).

*smacks forehead* Why didn't I think of that before! It's been my goal to learn how to read playing cards for some time now, and I've even been purchasing interesting decks with the hopes that one will inspire me, but thus far I've been too nervous to really jump into it. The lack of pictures is quite intimidating. But after I read your post, I realized that playing cards are so readily available and cheap that I could certainly buy a "training wheels" deck and scrawl all over it. Thanks for the suggestion!