You’ve heard it before. Maybe you’ve asked it, or been involved in a discussion about it. Now it’s time to bring this fine philosophical question to the cartomantic detective: Does size matter?

Of course, I’m talking about the size of cards; of Lenormand cards in particular. One of the nice things about the Lenormand deck is that it lives up to it’s French surname of “Petit.” The average Lenormand is about the same size as a playing card deck, which is nice and small. After working with these for a while, the typical tarot deck can feel super-sized!

But are all Lenormand decks cut equally when it comes to size? Is there such a thing as too small; or for that matter, too big? Let’s take a peek!

Tarot and Lenormand cards. (Click for a larger image.)

The above image includes, from left to right:

  • Rider-Waite-Smith, Centennial Edition
  • Wahrsagen a la lenormand
  • Gypsy Lenormand Oracle Deck
  • Mystical Lenormand

The Mystical Lenormand is the typical size of a Lenormand deck. You can see that the Gypsy is fairly large, while the Wahrsagen is tiny; and all are smaller than the US Games standard-sized tarot deck.

In this brief exploration of whether size matters, we are going right to the money shot:

Tarot and Lenormand assortment. (Click for larger image)

This is a variety of Lenormand decks, with a couple of tarot and one additional oracle for reference.

Top row, left to right:

  • Rider-Waite-Smith Tarot
  • Gypsy Lenormand Oracle Deck
  • Judith Bärtschi Lenormand Karten
  • Lo Scarabeo French Cartomancy (the deck most commonly pictured on my blog)
  • ASS Bilder Lenormand
  • Lenormand mini-astro-mythological
  • Wahrsagen a la Lenromand

Middle row, left to right:

  • Lo Scarabeo Tarot
  • Lo Scarabeo Lenormand Oracle
  • Lo Scarabeo French Cartomancy
  • Magisches Lenormand
  • Mystical Lenormand
  • Piatnik Lenormand
  • Pixie’s Astounding Lenormand

Bottom row

  • Gypsy Lenormand Oracle Deck
  • ASS Bilder Lenormand
  • Piatnik Gypsy Fortune Telling cards (Zigeuner Wahrsagekarten)

Looking at these cards, you can get an idea of the relative sizes. Most of the Lenormand decks are the same size. The Lo Scarabeo decks are just a little bigger than this standard.

Last, but not least, I wanted to show how the differently sized cards compare when spread out. While a visual comparison of grand tableaus (the full 36-card Lenormand spread) might be fun to see, I didn’t want to cover my entire floor with three of them. So hopefully these three-card layouts will give you some idea.

Lenormand spreads. (Click for larger image)

Top to bottom:

  • Gypsy Lenormand Oracle Deck
  • Lo Scarabeo French Cartomancy
  • Blue Owl (which was hiding under the French Cartomancy, and almost got overlooked entirely)
  • Wahrsagen a la lenormand

There you have it, a variety of decks in a relative size comparison. So does size matter? I believe the larger decks are awkward for a full grand tableau layout. The tiny Wahrsagen can no doubt perform under circumstances where the other decks would be a tight fit. The Lo Scarabeo decks are a little large but still pleasing enough to handle. Which leaves the average sized Lenormand deck good for the average usage of this little oracle. Basically, there is something there for every size preference.

What’s your opinion? Let me know in the comments!