MME. LENORMAND'S ORACLE CARDS

Updated 1/30/2013

GENERAL INFO:

This is an obscure deck that is not known by many outside those who are familiar with tarot. This cartomancy system cropped up after the death of a french woman named Mme Lenormand, who became so renowned for her skills that she read for the elite of Paris - Napoleon, Josephine, Robespierre, etc. For more background on her, visit Trionfi's biography link on her.

The deck as it is most commonly known today (petit lenormand) contains 36 cards, each of which displays an image and a title- in some cases also, a verse. For historical examples and images of this system, visit Trionfi's divination deck link, and look amongst the 36 card decks labeled Lenormand. I have taken the ideas in this deck and moved it a step further by collaging the images with some additional symbols from Tarot, alchemy, and the subconscious, as well as enriched the traditional meanings.

The great thing about this deck is it's size and symbols are not nearly as daunting as traditional tarot decks, making it perfect for a beginner or someone
who feels overwhelmed by tarot symbolism. The deck can be a very intuitive tool, lending itself well to various interpretations based on individual insight.

Les Vieux Jours Lenormand available via GameCrafter!

I am very proud and pleased to announce that the deck is available for orders through Gamecrafter. I have made two different versions for you to choose from. The LVJ Lenormand Card First Edition is the 36 card deck in a tuck box with a pdf download of the interpretation guidebook. The LVJ Lagniappe Edition contains the 36 card deck, keyword cards for on the go readings, 9 bonus artwork samples from my upcoming Victorian Cabinet Card Tarot Deck, a printed copy of the interpretation guidelines, a purple fabric pouch, all in a larger box. Click here for some sample images.

Gamecrafter ships the sets via USPS priority mail for the domestic US, and USPS First Class International for all other countries.

More details and photos are available on |
my Game Crafter shop pages!
Click on the images to the left to check them out!
*There is also a one card reading feature available in German (Deutsche) in the links at the left of the page, and in my links section below!*

I just posted adownloadable PDF guide in Deutsche
for my German customers. Click the link on the left!

BUT WHAT ABOUT THE OLD DECK? :(

The old handmade deck lives on in my
online reading parlor below.

So, Why Gamecrafter?

Publishing a card set with your own computer, printer and two hands is hard enough. Tedious, really.
I'm a champion of handmade goods and art, but when it comes to having to repeatedly produce the same items over and over,
I'm nothing compared to a professional printer. I was tickled when people seemed to enjoy my handmade sets that I originally designed
to fit in an altoids tin, but when demand got above a certain point I could no longer keep up with it. Those who have my handmade sets,
you are a lucky bunch because I will not be doing that sort of thing again.:)

My original plan for professional printing was to price custom card printers, and get crowd funding on Kickstarter. Professional print runs are
expensive, and I had been looking at printers who didn't have minimum orders because there was no way I could scrape together the funds
for a larger run. Well, even for a smaller run, truth be told. I'm an artist, and let's face it. I live that time honored tradition of being low on funds. ;)
So, I was looking into what I would have to do to get crowd funded when one of my lovely admirers suggested something FAR BETTER.

The Game Crafter is one of few companies that does print on demand for card decks and games, which has infinite appeal
to someone like me who is DIY, but doesn't have all the resources to really self publish on a larger scale.I did a lot of comparison shopping
between Game Crafter's services, and going the Kickstarter/Card Printer route. There was no question in my mind that the time investment with
Gamecrafter was going to pay out far sooner for both me and those who wanted to get their hands on my cards, and the price to manufacture
the decks was going to be more affordable for me and my customers than going the traditional route. Then, there was the added plus of being
able to provide extras like pouches, boxes and documents which I wouldn't have been able to produce on my own, and having an online storefront,
as well as shipping support so I wouldn't have to spend afternoons standing in line at the P.O. loaded down with boxes and customs forms.

The whole point of my wanting to get my deck professionally printed was so I could have less work on my shoulders and endure less stress than when
I was handcrafting my card decks, thereby allowing me to continue on with new art projects. Game Crafter is certainly delivering in this aspect. For my sanity
and your patience, I chose them, because I knew I would be able to get the cards to everyone faster at a better price for all, and do so in a more professional
manner. I also saw the potential to do other card projects, like a full tarot deck which, consequently, is already in the design phase.

I hope that everyone who gets a set enjoys this deck. It took a lot of hard work on so many levels, and I'm so proud of how it turned out. I'm also very
pleased and grateful for the support and interest that has been around my Lenormand project. I really never thought I'd be undertaking a project like this,
let alone accomplishing it. So, thanks very much, all of you. :) It's nice to know as an artist that I'm doing something that people value and enjoy, and that
even with my meager resources that I can make it available to a wider audience.

What about the old deck? :(

I am fully aware that there are folks out there who will prefer my handmade Lenormand decks better, because I personally made them amd whatever
pouch or special tin they received them in. The handmade appeal will resonate more with some, and sometimes the first version of something will just become the
favorite. As I mentioned above, I originally made the deck to sell on Etsy in Altoid tins. The cards were smaller than poker size. I digtally collaged them all on my
computer, using versions of software FROM THE 90's. (which consequently, I'm still using) I printed them out at first on a crappy epson printer, and then a
better one, and CUT THEM OUT BY HAND WITH AN EXACTO KNIFE. Then I punched the corners round with a corner punch. My hands HURT just
remembering this. Eventually, I moved up to getting on of those guillotine paper cutters. Then I even moved up to laminating the sheets before cutting. Not
including the hours spent designing the tins and sewing the pouches, I spent far too many hours on making sets. I didn't really have an inkling that these were even going to become as vaguely in demand as they were. I had an interest in tarot, card images and emblematic art. I picked an obscure deck and thought,
"This looks fun. Let's try making my own version!" I really didn't know what I was getting into. I was just making art, seeing what people were interested in.

I never focus on just one thing as an artist; I always have other projects going, several at the same time. So when the demand for the sets kept up,
I found that hand publishing the decks was draining away my time for fairs, for rest, and for other art. So, I looked into what it took to get a deck published.

Why didn't I just get my original deck printed? Because I had never planned for it, for one. Most publishers, whether a printer or an on demand service, make
their cards at least poker size. Mine were smaller, and sizing them up was going to make them look bad. Because I had done collages using images from other
sources, that made making a larger print run a huge issue. As a collage artist, I am very aware of what a mess copyright law can be. I do my best to make sure
that every image I use is public domain, or fair use, but there is still a lot of gray area. Large publishers don't really want to touch that short of thing, because, well., lawyers.

While I had collected images for the first deck that I believed to be public domain/fair use, I didn't document very well where many of them came from. I wanted
to be able to attribute my sources, and I couldn't in some cases. A couple of my resource websites had even vanished. Also, some of the images I felt were not as
well designed, some were clip arty, some didn't really express what I had wanted to in the first place. So that's why, using my original designs as a mere starting point, I spent almost two years reworking, redesigning and rethinking this deck.

I was able to make the new deck more affordable than then handmade ones, which originally were maybe $35 for unlaminated hand cut sets, then $45 laminated
with pouch and $50 with tin. The new sets are $20 for the boxed cards and pdf, and $30 for the larger set with pouch, printed guide, keyword cards and extra art.
If you've never tried to make your own card deck by hand, I suggest you try it once. It's more work than you think.
Really, I don't suggest you try making your own set by hand. Just go to Game Crafter and save yourself the callouses and sanity. :)

What I will now refer to as the "Handmade Lenormand", was the first card set I ever made. It was good, but it was just a step in the evolution of my work.
I am very proud of the redesigned set. It's by no means the pinnacle of my work, and someday something else I do will surpass it. I'm an artist first. I'm not well
off, so I've learned to make art with what little resources I have, and to have a professionally printed version of my work available to the public is a big step for me.
I'm very glad that they first deck was as well liked as it was. I know many are sad because it will not be available ever again.
And, I am sorry that I cannot make it available for you. However, you can still see the images in the Lenormand Parlor below.

SPECIAL THANKS ACKNOWLEDGEMENTS
MUFFIN, HEATHER, SEAN,
M, TORI, SHELLIE;

Thanks for your continued support, encouragement, and doses of much needed silliness during the creation of this deck. This deck, and the continued use of my
brain cells would not be without you. BIG thanks also to SYLVIA for the awesome suggestion of The Game Crafter! And thanks GAME CRAFTER for making a wider venue for my art possible!
This deck, as is all of my collage work, was made possible by many generous people who provide public domain images, collections of ephemera, and fair use imagery for artists like me. I would like to thank all of them for their work and support of the public domain as a creative resource for all. For the full list of my image resources and links, go to my acknowledgements page.


What's Next?

I always have too many projects going at once, which I suppose is half the fun.
Apart from the other art you see elsewhere on my website,I plan on continuing with more card projects until I run out of ideas. :) I currently have a full tarot deck in the works, which is starting its young life as several hand made collages using Victorian Cabinet cards. Cabinet Cards, for those unfamiliar, is a style of portrait photograph that gained popularity in the 1870's.with what was typically an albumen print mounted on heavier cardstock. I am working with scans of actual cabinet cards, as well as some antique images that predate cabinet cards, and using them in traditional hand done collage/mixed media.

I'm currently working on the major arcana, selecting pictures, hand coloring with pencils or watercolor, stamping and collaging. The major arcana and court cards will feature the cabinet cards style portraits, while the minor arcana, with the exception of the aces, will feature somewhat of a throwback to the old style of pips before the popularity of the Ryder Waite deck. They will still be very Victorian in theme and feel, though more like a digital assemblage on paper to stand apart from the photo portraits.

The suits, as I've planned so far will be Gears (pentacles), Keys (staves), Candles (wands), and Bottles (cups) As Game Crafter now offers larger cards for tarot, I plan on using their larger format cards for this set instead of the poker size that I used for the Lenormand. If you'd like to see some of the early artwork, check out my facebook page for samples. And stay tuned, as progress will be posted for this new deck!

Check on my progress with the tarot deck with my card by card countdown list!


Mme. Lenormand's Parlor

Welcome!

You are about to enter Mme Lenormand's exclusive card reading cabinet. The deck which she uses features 36 cards each with a different image. In antiquity, these cards often featured a verse as well that related to the picture.

The reading is a single card, and the interpretations are simple as well as traditional to the original deck for the purpose of this site. Here you can see in full colour the cards of the original handmade version of the Les Vieux Jours deck.

If you are ready to enter for a reading,
then click on the fleur de lis.