March 2009


This month started with a flea market and was followed by the general collectors bourse in Utrecht, but this time both brought only a few new decks and they were not of such special interest or quality, that they would compete for this spot. Fortunately there is always Ebay and we found a vintage KLM deck, that was made by the Dutch Speelkaartenfabriek Nederland (SN). There are two KLM decks by SN and we had the 1946 version, but had been looking for the 1948 version for a long time. So we're very glad that we've finally found one now.
Why are you looking at something completely different then here? Well, although we definitely consider it our best find, the pattern is a standard international one,  so only the four aces with pictures of KLM airliners would be interesting enough to show here. We also realize that we're one of the few collectors that have a special interest in SN and that our excitement over this deck wouldn't be shared by many collectors. We received it early this month and had already made this decision then.

So we had to hope that a good replacement would be found. Fortunately by the end of the month there were three decks that qualified. The first one was a vintage Spanish version of the Stag Party deck, but we decided to show that one in the Pin-Up & Erotica xpo. The second one was by a Dutch private printer and the third one is here below.

We received a surprise package from our friend Tao Liu from Shanghai and one of the decks said Volcom Playing Cards on the box and when we opened it we were amazed by the eccentric and unusual designs on the courts. We hope you'll enjoy them too, as we've decided that this would be our Deck of the Month.


The deck was printed in China and published by Volcom in the US September 2008. Volcom is a brand of clothing for the youth, so welcome to the world of hip-hop, skate-boards etc. The faces on the courts are photo-collages. The artist is unknown, but his choice in material is remarkable. Still the complete images are nice examples of contemporary design.

The deck has two other unusual features, which can be best seen on the Ace of hearts here below. All the pips have a very light gray background that is a mirrored version of the back design. So it suggests that the cards are slightly transparent. The suit colours and indices suggest to have been cut and pasted on the cards, thus reducing the background to a single thin layer, that could cause the transparency. However, when held to a strong light the cards are not transparent at all and only the graphic suggestion is left.

The deck consists of 52 cards and 2 jokers.