card combinations grand tableau interpretation techniques lenormand layouts video tutorials Jul 03, 2023

Hi everyone. Welcome back to the channel. Thank you as always for tuning back in. If you're new here, welcome! I'm Layla, the Lenormand Reader, and I am one of the few people who focuses almost exclusively on Lenormand’s cards.

Today, I want to talk about a technique that I like to use in my layouts and my readings with Lenormand, and it is the technique that I call the corner cards. So this would be reading the cards that are at corner of each other in a Tableau-style layout.

I've done a video about Tableau-style layouts. I'm going to link it so that you can have a look at what we mean by that. But in a nutshell, Tableau-style layouts are specific to Lenormand, and they involve laying out the cards in the form of a geometric figure, typically a square or a rectangle.

The purpose of having a Tableau-style layout is so we read lines, columns, rows, diagonals, and all sorts of other ways the cards come together in such a configuration.

And this is very different from the way we do layouts with Tarot or oracle cards, which is essentially having a position that has a specific meaning in a spread, and the card that lands on that position is dedicated to just that location.

So for example, a horseshoe spread, which is my favorite example to describe the differences, as a past present, future, obstacle, other people, advice, and outcome positions. 

And what I have here is a three by two, and the three by two is a really practical spread to get started with your pairs and triplets, and also with Tableau-style layouts.

You have two rows of three cards, and three columns of two cards. You can also read the diagonals. This is how you read Tableau-style layouts, you read the cards in all these different sentences.

So this technique, that I call reading the corner cards, is just that, combining the corner cards and interpreting them. So it would be these two corners (cards 1 and 6) and these two corners here (cards 2 and 5).

Now, the way I typically read the corner cards is at the diagonal. So like I just pointed out, the two at the farthest diagonal and the other two at the other diagonal.

But it does not mean that you cannot read them in different ways. You can read the two corners at the top and bottom, and you can read the two corners at the left and right, which ends up being the columns in the case of the three by two layout.

Corner cards become more helpful with the bigger layouts, especially a Grand Tableau, because in a smaller layout like a three by two, there are just a few cards so the corner cards are really just the columns and the row, and so they tend to repeat what we already see in these lines.

But with a bigger spread like a Grand Tableau, the corner cards give us some insight.

So what would be the insights that come through the corner cards?

The corner cards help frame the situation. They also contribute to the answer. They help bring out high level energies or indications from a spread.

And that would be in contrast with the lines, the rows, columns, and diagonals, which give us the story details. The corner cards help ‘box’ the spread, give high level indications, and a context for the situation.

So that's basically how I use the corner cards.

Of course, if you have a different way of interpreting the corner cards or different kinds of insights that you would like the corner cards to give you, you are totally free with that.

The idea is that you practice and experiment to discover what you feel the corner cards are telling you, so you build your practice based on your experience.


So let's take this example in this three by two.

I think the message is really clear here because there is a standout combination. There is the Ring and Scythe, and this is a very clear message of a divorce.

Now, obviously, with a three by two layout, it is so small that you sort of see everything together. Whereas in a Grand Tableau, you're going to be searching a little for the messages.

So the corner cards in this three by two example are clearly going to contribute to what we're seeing through the Ring and Scythe, and the reason is because the Scythe is one of the corners.

Now, we have one corner with the Moon here, and the Scythe and Moon are pretty opposite in meaning and energy. The Moon is gentle and soft, and the Scythe is fast and sharp. It is not soft at all.

So there is a sharp contrast that comes through this pair. We see that the Scythe with the energy of the Moon can also cut short a phase, as the Moon represents phases, and it could also bring a sense of disappointment or surprise, and clearly it would put a stop to the unfolding of the Moon or cause a change.

The other pair of corner cards are the Tower and Heart. The Tower and Heart are about a long-term relationship or a relationship from the past. The pair can also suggest a long-standing connection.

The Tower and Heart are in clear contrast with the Scythe and Moon. They are opposite energies. The Tower and Heart are a continuation, a long-term unfolding, something that opens up over time, whereas with the Scythe and Moon, there is a sharp break and something is cut short. We might say the unfolding of the Moon is cut short.

So in this three by two, we can immediately see from the corner cards what the energy of the reading is going to be about, and that's mainly because of the role of the Scythe.

First, it is a ‘loud’ card, second, it comes in contrast with the energies of the rest of the cards, third it is at a corner, and fourth, it is at the right hand side corner, and as you've heard me say in many of my forecasts, the right hand side colon and the cards on the right part of a layout tend to be associated with the future-most and outcome aspects of a reading.

So when we see the Scythe in this position, we know that a separation, a break, or something like that is ahead.

The combinations around the Scythe are also pretty strong, like the Scythe and Ring. The Scythe and Heart add to this pair as well because they suggest a heartbreak. So clearly from these combinations with the Scythe, a separation is ahead.

It is not like we have it with the Clover, suggesting a lucky break, or the Flowers or the Star, suggesting release and a healing potentially.

With these cards, the Scythe is very clear in its meaning. And I do have my own card combinations dictionary in case you want to get into the details of all of these combinations.

And what we see in these corner cards is confirmed in the lines of the three by two, and that is mainly because of the Scythe itself, but also because the three by two is small.

Now suppose we had the Ring instead of the Scythe at that corner here, the idea of a separation would be downplayed. Why?

Again, the Tower and Heart, like we said, suggest a long-standing relationship, a relationship from the past, or one that unfolds over time. And the Moon and Ring are also about something along those lines.

The Ring, like the Tower, is a card of continuation. It is mainly a part of commitment and relationships. And with the Moon, it is quite bright, so quite a positive relationship here.

If we didn't look at the inner cards, and we just looked at the corner cards, we would have felt that the relationship is actually really good, and it unfolds over time. So you see here, the corner cards give a different energy to the reading.

And like I said, it is possible that the relationship does not necessarily break off because in the right hand most column, we have the Ring and Heart, which would be really supportive for a relationship. It is a very beautiful combination for a commitment.

So the way we would interpret the reading in this sense, is that perhaps there is a break from the past, possibly a divorce as well.

It is hard not to interpret these two cards as that because they are so close to each other and it is a very sharp combination. But we also have to take into account the Ring and the Heart as the later most part of the reading, which is supportive for a relationship.

So what is going on here is not as sharp and final as when the Scythe is on the top right corner (as in the first layout), which contributes to this column as well as the corner cards.

So these are the kinds of nuances we can develop and have a feel for as we work with the cards and with the different parts of a Tableau-style layout like the simple three by two.


Let's work through another example before we get to the Grand Tableau. Let's do an hourglass.

So here is an hourglass, the large hourglass. There is a free resource for the Hourglass. I'm going to link it in case you're interested in trying this lovely layout. It comes in three different sizes, small, medium, large. And this example here is large hourglass.

I find that this size is ideal because you have a triplet in the central line. As you can see, with an hourglass, we have more cards than the three by two, and the corner cards are roughly in the same positions, but there are more cards between them.

So this is going to give us a bit of a different feel for what the corner cards offer to the reading. They tend to add more insight because they are farther away from what's going on in the middle of the hourglass.

The first set of corner cards is the Key and Letter, which suggest some very good news. I also typically read the Key and Letter as suggesting a green light of sorts. This can be positive feedback, receiving a yes answer, or applications going through. The overall idea of a positive outcome is what I see with the Letter and Key.

The other pair of corner cards in here are quite interesting because we have a challenging card, the Whip, and the Whip is for all practical purposes, the most challenging card of the deck. It is with the Moon.

We had the Moon in the three by two so we're seeing a similar energy to what we read with the Scythe and Moon. The Whip is in contrast with the soft energy of the Moon. It messes up the Moon, you could say. It interrupts this gentle unfolding, these phases of the Moon.

Now, the Moon is interesting because it also suggests an offer. And when we look at these corner cards together, the Moon can suggest this. So what we could be looking at is some kind of offer or invitation that comes through.

However, with the Whip, there can be a challenge. It can mean that we reject the offer or that perhaps it doesn't turn out to be so good.

We also have the Whip and Letter in this farthest column, and they are also corner cards that we can combine together as well. Clearly this points to challenging news in contrast with the Key and Letter, which point to very positive news, positive answers, positive feedback, or success. So these two pairs are in great contrast.

So without looking at what's going on in the middle parts of the hourglass, the corner cards by themselves tell us that there is quite a lot going on in this reading. We get quite a lot of interesting insights from just examining the corner cards.

It looks like there can be some good news, but we might turn down the news. Or perhaps there is a flip side, or it turns out not to be as good as we initially thought. These are all possible scenarios.

The cards might seem like a contradiction, but in real life, these scenarios happen. It happens that sometimes we think we got the green light or it worked out, but then something comes up and messes it up. Or it turns out not to be what we thought it would be.

So interpreting the corner cards gives us a feel for the rest of the reading. It puts the reading in the context expressed by the corner cards. They affect how we are going to read the rest of the cards because of how they box the layout and the reading.

Looking at the rest of the cards, we see that everything is working well, except the Whip. The cards are neutral and positive, but the Whip is quite challenging. So it will be interesting to see how the story weaves.

I am not going to get into the details of the interpretation, but just at a high level, it sounds like there is a job offer because we have the Fox in the middle. We have the Ring and Letter, which point to a contract. We have the House and Garden, and again, the Fox and Garden along with the Ship, can suggest a job situation. The Stork and Ship point to changes, and the Whip would actually contribute to that.

So with this, I think the way we can read this hourglass is to suggest that there is an offer that comes through which enables us to break away from the current circumstance.

That's how I would read the cards, and the reason I would read them this way is because the majority of the cards are positive or neutral and there is only the Whip that is challenging. We also kick off with the Key, and sometimes the opening card has quite a lot of impact on the rest of the reading.

So I would read the Key and Letter as suggesting this positive news, and we see it in different lines, like the bottom row. These diagonals suggest there is indeed good news, and it seems that as a result of that, we are able to separate and embrace this new opportunity or this contract.

The Moon and Whip can suggest that we need to be a bit gentler perhaps with our changes and transition. But we still need to draw the line and move on and embrace this opportunity.

So back to the corner cards, we initially said that there could be a scenario that plays out that the news is initially good, but then it turns out to be bad. Another scenario is that the news is good and so we're able to make a move and announce it. So we get our opportunity, we get the green light to move forward with whatever it is we want to move forward with.

And so this is basically goodbye, parting, and separating from the environment that we're currently in. We have to make changes in order to embrace this green light. And that's how I would read the cards.

Can you see how the corner cards help us with setting the energy for the reading, boxing it, and creating a framework for it?

At this point, I want to ask you, have you used corner cards in your readings and your Tableau-style layouts? Is this technique new to you? Are you interested in using it?

Leave me a comment below. I would love to know where you are at with these Tableau-style techniques.


With this said, let's go ahead and look at a Grand Tableau and see how the corner cards play out in there as well.

Here is our Grand Tableau as straight as I can get it and of course I've zoomed out and I used a different deck, my own deck, because it is smaller than Titania's Fortune Cards, and we can get more cards onto the table.

Obviously there is plenty to read in a Grand Tableau, and what is tricky about it is that all the cards figure in it. Every single card of the deck is in the Grand Tableau. This means that we have positive cards, negative cards, all the challenges, all the good stuff, and also all the neutral cards in between.

It is in a layout like the Grand Tableau that combinations like the corner cards and other structures help us get the energy of the reading, so we are not confused from all the messages that come through with all the cards being in a Grand Tableau. This is where we really see the practicality and the help we can get from structures like the corner cards.

And as you can see, there are many other structures we can read. And that's the thing about Tableau-style layouts. Their geometry helps us put together all of these structures.

In the Piquet version of the Tableau, which is this one, we can look at these corner cards here, at the corners of the big rectangle. Or you might want to include the ones from the small line. So you might do Scythe and Heart, and Cross and Whip. It is up to you.

In my practice, I use the big rectangle for the corner cards because I feel that the bottom line is a little bit outside of the main structure, but you might want to experiment and see which corner cards you prefer.

So again, all the cards figure in the Grand Tableau, but the combinations they’re in are unique. Structures like the corner cards help us draw the bigger energy for the reading, or the energy that surrounds it, as it were.

There are many others we can read in a Tableau and if you are interested in learning more of them, I encourage you to explore the Handbook of Layouts and the LLIT.

Looking at these corner cards in this Tableau, I find that they are really helpful in telling us about what's going on.

We have the Scythe and Dog, and we have the Whip and Ring. And of course we have the Scythe and Ring and the Whip and Dog if you want to combine them this way. This clearly tells us that a relationship is falling through.

We have two relationship cards and we have two separation cards in their different combinations. In fact, any way you combine them, they are loud and clear about a relationship falling through.

And this is a very good example of how helpful the corner cards can be. They really help us draw big outlines, big outcomes, big energies, around the situation, and help us not get lost in all of the details that we can have in a Grand Tableau.

These corner cards are also well confirmed by other combinations. If you look at the bottom row, we have the Mouse next to the Man and Heart. It is also next to the Cross, which is often read as challenging, especially with other challenging cards.

So it is clear from the bottom row, that first, there are challenges because of the Mouse and Cross, and second that there is a relationship element because of the Man and Woman. And so reading this line together, it is clear that there are relationship troubles. And notice that this aligns very well with what we're seeing in the corner cards.

So really just looking at these big structures helps us take away something really important from the reading and it also helps set the stage for interpreting the rest of the Tableau.

In all cases, this is how I like to use the corner cards and these techniques because they really help point the reading in a specific direction.

And again, in a Tableau, there are all the cards, so we might think that everything is happening. But of course, not everything is happening. Every reading is unique and every situation is unique. And so these structures, in tandem with everything else going on in the Tableau, really help us takeaway insights that are unique to the reading, that help us focus on what is going on, and avoid reading the cards in a too general way.

Other standout combinations in relation to the corner cards, include the Coffin next to the Dog - the Dog is a corner card. The Dog also knights to the Snake. So we can get a feel for the layers and additional insights that are supporting the messages of the corner cards.

Notice here we have the Child and Ring, which point to a new relationship. We have the Ring, Road, House, and Stork in this diagonal. This is often a clear combination for moves and changes. And of course we have the bottom line which is very clear.

I'm also noticing that the Woman knights to the Snake, and in fact the Snake also knights to the Man. So we have the Man and Woman at an arrow with the Snake, which is not great for a relationship.

The Man knights to the Coffin, and of course when we read all of the different rows and columns like this one which has the Coffin, it looks like a chapter is ending.

The Whip in this column suggests standing one's ground strongly in the face of these challenges. And when we take into consideration the bottom row where we find the Woman, there are positive messages for a relationship but in the wake of an ending, which aligns well with the Child and the idea of a separation and a new beginning.

This is why I like the corner cards and similar structures, because they really help us weave the story in a way that makes sense, and you see how the details confirm them. And of course we have to read all of the lines, the rows and the columns, because that's where the main story lines and its details are.

Putting together the bottom line, the corner cards, and details like the arrows and the knights, and all the lines of course, helps you confirm the messages and find internal consistency in the Tableau.

So again, I feel that the corner cards are very helpful. I think they are also pretty important because of their way of framing a reading.

This is the kind of technique that is helps us interpret bigger spreads like the Tableau and smaller versions of it, because there is a lot going on, and Grand Tableaus are prone to go in many different directions since all the cards figure in it. But with the corner cards really, we can frame what is going on and discipline the interpretation.

So that is my take on the corner cards. I encourage you to try interpreting them to help you frame your bigger readings, your bigger spreads, and your Tableaus, and to help you have a context for the reading at hand.

Like I asked earlier, I would be really interested to know if you interpret the corner cards or if this is the first time that you come across this technique, and tell me how you use them or if you combine them in different ways. Give me a little bit of detail about how you apply this technique, I would be really interested to know.

So thank you for tuning in. As always, I look forward to your comments. Please be sure to like, share, and subscribe. Again this is my channel. Share it with people who are looking to learn Lenormand so that they are aware that there is someone out there who cares a lot about this practice and who is sharing all sorts of interesting things about it. Thanks again for watching and until next time take very good care of yourself.



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