April 2010


This month we don't have to complain about the number of decks to choose from. We returned from the general collectors bourse at the Jaarbeurs in Utrecht with 14 new decks for our collection. But besides quantity we did find quality this month too. The most exciting find came from a Dutch auction site, where we found a deck by the Dutch Speelkaartenfabriek Nederland, which hasn't been described yet. It's not in the catalogue, nor in the published additions to it.  It seems that only one other collector has a similar deck, but he's out of the country at the moment, so that can't be confirmed. A "scoop" is the latest publication by Hermès Maison for the Spring Summer collection of 2010.
So why isn't one of them presented here?
The SN deck is only special because it has special aces. The courts have the company's version of the international pattern. Besides that, the deck will probably be attractive for SN collectors only and they already have received a scan of it from us.
We've decided to add the Hermès deck to our "Decks with a Fragrance" xpo, together with a new deck, published by Cartier. So check out the last pages of that xpo!

The majority of the decks that we found in Utrecht are reproductions of antique decks from the collection of the Fournier Museum in Spain. There was one that immediately caught our eye. Although it's only a reproduction, it's such a delightful deck to see, that the deck deserves to be the Deck of the Month this time in every way.


The reproduced decks were all published by the County of Alava and are based on the original decks that are in the Fournier Museum in Vitoria-Gasteiz. In some of the reproductions the original flaws, like discoloration or stains, have been reproduced too, but the Fournier Museum must have an original deck in perfect condition, as the reproduction is a perfect one too.


The deck is a reproduction of an antique Spanish deck from the 1890's, made by the Fabrica de Naipes Simeón Dura from Valencia. Although it's an advertising deck for "El Barco" chocolates, the backs have a regular design and don't show any advertising, like we are used to nowadays. All the advertising is done on the front of each card. 

The illustrations are done in a delightful and imaginative style and the enlarged animals together with the young children gave us an "Alice in Wonderland" feeling. The deck immediately won our hearts and we hope you'll enjoy these images as much as we do.

Make sure that you..... CLICK THE ACES (1's) TO SEE THE NUMBERCARDS PER SUIT..... they are more than worthwhile to see!

The deck is a typical Spanish deck, consisting of 48 cards. The card are numbered from 1 to 12 in each suit. The 10, 11 and 12 can be seen as our Jack, Queen and King, although there's no actual queen depicted. In the Spanish patterns the 11 is usually a man/knight, seated on a horse. The regular Spanish suits (Clubs, Swords, Cups and Coins) have been altered in this deck. Coins are now sunflower-girls, Cups have been replaced by a chocolate decanter and a dog and jester head form the end of the Clubs and Swords. Not often seen is that the name of the manufacturer is printed on each card.