Our Favourite Card Deck Collections
By Alex J. Coyne © Gifts for Card Players
Most card players have several decks in their collection and will love to talk about their favourite and cherished decks, some with special memories of great card games attached to them. But some decks aren’t necessarily just for playing with. Card collectors look for different kinds of cards to collect, like antique and vintage cards, special editions, art pieces and rare or signed cards.
Did you know, there are also museums, exhibitions and groups all dedicated to collecting card decks? Check out some of our favourites:
The World in Play is an exhibition from the Metropolitan Museum of Art (2016). It features “luxury cards” from between 1430 and 1540. Truly a must-see for card and art lovers. You can still see the collection from photos available here, and you can buy the catalogue from the official museum store.
The Museum of Fournier de Naipes was, at its beginnings, a private collection originally owned by Felix Alfaro Fournier in 1916. The Fournier collection boasts more than 20, 000 card decks that have been collected throughout history – and these really show the progression of card decks as a medium. The museum’s official website is available here, or you can take a virtual Google walkthrough of the museum here.
The Musée Français de la Carte à Jouer, founded in 1986, is located in Paris, France. The collection hosts not only a massively impressive collection of over 9, 000 cards and decks, but also etchings, sketches and other exhibits and objects that are related to cards and card games. The museum’s official website is available over here.
Who says museums have to be in a building? Visit the official Online PokerStars Museum to find out more about the history behind PokerStars, their big games and their notable players. They first announced that they were putting it together in 2013, and it’s worth a look for any card fan – but especially if you are a fan of online poker.
According to Guinness World Records, the largest private collection of card decks contains 11, 087 different card decks and belongs to Liu Fuchang of Mainland China.
More Resources for Collectors
The mission behind Portfolio 62 is to help card collectors organise their own collections and peek into collections of others to spot card decks they might not have seen before. This is a really cool platform for card lovers, and according to their website stats they already host 140, 012 different decks and 5, 885 decks in their archives.
Connecting with collectors? Take a look at the official website of the International Playing Card Society for more information on card collecting. This is a fantastic resource for those who are new to serious collecting.
This Bicycle Deck Application (unfortunately no longer available)
Need to know more about a specific Bicycle deck back design? There’s an app for that! This app from Cypress Films you can open in your browser. Just hover your mouse to see 82 different back designs from Bicycle; click on one of the numbers to be taken to a more detailed summary of the history and design behind it. They also offer this handy USPC dating guide for collectors.